In her own words: My name is Tracy Morrison and I live in sunny Minnesota. I’m neither British nor a nun – I’m just a Midwesterner with a headache. Mine is mainly a humor blog but sometimes it’s not. I am an ex-corporate ladder climber turned writer, social media maven and ruler of my own little universe. I really should polish my crown a bit though.
I hate to say it but I relate writing to pain. Not that it’s painful to write, but that it seems easier to write something if it’s painful. Pain is an emotion we all understand and rarely question. When we are at our most vulnerable our emotions surface and spill out onto our papers easily. Therapy it is. And it doesn’t sounds so self-absorbed like those happy thoughts can be. What fun is a story full of rainbows and unicorns once you’re an adult?
I kept a yearly diary starting in the third grade. Except in the third grade I could not spell ‘diary’ and instead wrote ‘Dear Dairy.’ I wonder if the milkman knew I was writing to him. When I read these diaries they are filled with “this boy did this” and “this boy doesn’t like me” and “this boy doesn’t even know who I am.” There are no dreams or happy birthdays or visits to the beach…just boy crap. They kind of make me angry now. My grade-school angst grew into my high school diaries being filled with heartbroken ‘woe is me’ poetry about the loser boys who never gave me the time of day. Assholes.
I honestly don’t think I liked myself much…except that made me a better writer.
I never received high marks in writing. My teachers would make comments that my subjects were shallow and my grammar was poor and they could tell I wasn’t portraying anything real in my characters. I only received an ‘A’ on two papers in my entire life. And you want to know why – because they were the most painful papers I’ve ever written and came directly from my heart. The first was a paper I wrote in seventh grade. I wrote about being the new girl in a new town and new school and how I had the wrong hair, the wrong accent, the wrong folders and the wrong jeans. I wrote about how my mom stayed up nights cutting my jeans and resewing the seams to the proper style, and how I grew out my bangs just to fit in. It summed up an awkward 12 year old in two pages front and back and my teacher hugged me when he handed me back my A+ paper. I liked the grade but not the words that existed on that paper. It was a complete illustration of my diary entries.
The only other paper to receive high marks was one I wrote for AP English my senior year. I hated my teacher. Hated her and she hated my writing. D’s D’s and more D’s – ‘lack of effort’ ‘lack of depth’ ‘lack of who the fuck cares’ – so I showed her. I wrote about what it was like living as an anorexic and how my friends had now shunned me and how a doctor told me last week that I would never have children because of what I did to my body. I laid it all out for her in a story that not even my own mother really knew. I gave her my heart that day and sobbed when I handed it in. It was also the day I started getting better and taking control of my own life.
I kept those two papers. The only two assignments I’ve ever kept from school because I want to always remember that girl right then. The girl I don’t see in the mirror anymore.
Which is why I started my blog four years ago. I started my blog out of the pain from my miscarriages because pain needs a voice and it’s an easy voice really. Try writing humor sometime– it’s hard. My story means something. To me. Maybe to my kids. To my parents. To my friends. The words are important. Even when they are painful.
And while most teachers I’ve ever had would tell you I’m not a writer, I know I’ve proven them wrong.