I used to think that one day I would become a writer, so I started this blog as practice. However, I’ve learned that writing is a creative pursuit like painting or sculpting or playing the guitar. In this way, I am already a writer, just as someone who paints is a painter or someone who sculpts is a sculptor. I’ve learned that the product I produce by practicing creative pursuits is not necessarily as valuable as the act of creating. I’ve learned that it doesn’t matter to me how many people read my blog or can find meaning within it. The moment that I start writing for someone else is the moment that I leave behind my greatest intention for my work which is to compile my personal observations and initiate new thoughts from my unique perspective, a perspective that is no more or no less valuable than another human’s lens. In this way, I am able to remove the pressures of pleasing an audience or crafting a certain aesthetic and retain my focus on personal growth.
I started this blog over two years ago and although I have made changes in the format, I have chosen to leave the first posts I have written, even though many of them contain ideas and thoughts that are no longer relatable to me as I have grown tremendously since the days of my earlier posts. In a way, I think this blog is a visible reminder to me of my growth that inspires me to continue creating new experiences for myself and challenging my most deep-rooted thoughts, values, and beliefs.
In conclusion, I will tell you a little about myself that I have learned over my past twenty two years here on Earth. I am Allison. I just moved to Portland, Oregon from Columbus, Ohio and am serving a year with AmeriCorps. My bachelor’s degree is in Social Work from Ohio State. As much shit as I like to give the midwest, Columbus was my home for the past four years and I love that city and the people in it with my whole heart. Columbus has been the backdrop for the development of my most cherished friendships and for that I am extremely grateful. I am also very thankful for my new home in the Pacific Northwest, a place where I am endlessly discovering. What a great feeling that is.
I am a listener and an observer more than a speaker; I often find myself absorbing the energy of others when in a group rather than expelling energy. I value inextricable human connection more than anything else in this world, however, sometimes I would rather spend time by myself or with a single friend than be in a room with a lot of people. I think that surrounding yourself with people and places that are different from your version of normal is most valuable and essential to growth and I strive to place myself in settings and situations in which my ways of thinking are challenged but accepted with empathy. I have had the privilege of widening my world view through traveling and I learned that discovering new places with interesting people is one of my greatest joys. My love for fluffy little creatures like squirrels, kitties, and even mice was the inspiration for my blog name.
In other words, I am just a human and in no way have everything figured out. I am here experiencing the raw challenges of humanity like everyone else, struggling but also thriving.