Tuesday, January 3, 2012

You Are What You Do

Good morning and Happy New Year!

I am a person who loves to learn new things.  I crave challenges and am always seeking out my 'next thing.'  Sometimes a phase of fascination can be for a relatively short period of time, such as reading a series of books that are related by subject, or my obsessions can be years long, where I am driven to master something and it becomes part of my personality.  My love of horses has been a lifelong passion, and a purpose that permeates nearly every aspect of my life.  Likewise, being a riding instructor, trainer, and breeder are all endeavors that generate a huge amount of inspiration, drive, and yearning to learn within me.  They are fascinations that turned into my reality because I worked at figuring them out, every day.

More recently, I began writing about horses.  This is something I have wanted to do for a long, long time.  What held me back?  Well, first, having the time to do it; I was out living it and doing it, and it seemed that writing about it (adding my voice and recording my experiences) wasn't as important when I was younger.  But I think I was also afraid to use that title...."writer."  Who am I to call myself a "writer?"  Aren't writers intellectuals?  Esteemed authorities on everything there is to know about their subjects?  If I boldly called myself a writer, wouldn't there be people, maybe even people that I really care about, who would laugh at me, or *GASP* even worse, tell me that I suck at it?

And then it hit me....no one is ever going to give you permission or approval to claim that title.  That is one you give yourself.  In everything that I have done - teaching, training or breeding, I have taken something that I loved, something that moved me deeply, and worked everyday to figure it out, learning to be better, and earning the title. It occurred to me that every time I write, I am earning the title of writer.  YOU ARE WHAT YOU DO.  If I regret anything, it is that there have been moments where I hesitated to take action because I was waiting for someone to give me approval.  So here's to a New Year; one in which I intend to give myself permission to be what is in my heart.

Who do you want to be this year?