Today I want to write about my Oomph. Now don’t get ahead of yourself people, “Oomph” isn’t some weirdo code word for my lady parts or something equally uncomfortable that I would probably write about. No, “Oomph” is something much more important.
I once thought my Oomph was the crazy and ridiculous things I would do in the spur of the moment to attract any kind of attention I could. The actions that would make a passerby take a second look. The way I dressed or the insane misadventures I would get myself into. Now that I am older (and I hope a bit wiser), I know this to be untrue.
I have been asked so many times in my life why I write. Why do I stay up far past bedtime to write an article or wake up before the sun rises to complete a poem that came to me in the wee hours of the morning?
Each time I reply with a similar answer — because I have to.
I write for myself. I write for the calm as well as the challenge. I scroll words to paper to uncover hidden emotions and bask in the inner solitude those emotions create. I write to exercise my imagination. I write to achieve the goals that constantly float in my always wandering mind.
Secondly, I write for the voice; a singing in the depths of my soul. It resides in a place deep down, a place that is cramped and lonely. Recently I’ve come to the understanding I must set this voice free of that place. I want this voice to be heard because it has many beautiful, funny, heartfelt, and glorious things to say. I’ve hid it away for far too long because I was afraid of criticism and censorship. And undoubtedly some will hate the words this voice will warble — but now as confidence washes over me, that will only make me sing louder.
I write for the one person who actually hears the words.
Sometimes I will scroll through Facebook, the newspaper, WordPress and find an article that in that exact moment catches my eye and after reading it I feel somehow changed. This is the beauty of the written word, and it is truly magnificent. To be stirred in a small way or moved absolutely immeasurably by the prose that a complete stranger wrote is truly a uniting feeling. If ever the words I carve — past, present or future — can claim these types of feelings in even one other human being I will feel prosperous in my endeavour as a writer.
And finally I write for my children. Yes I may write embarrassing tales of their not-so-easy potty training days and the weird and wonderful things that they say and do on a daily basis, but they give me such great material how can I resist?
In all honesty, I owe my so-far writing career to them. Those beautiful little beings inspired me to begin writing again after a long and saddening dry spell. They were the ones who allowed me to once again find my true Oomph. And for that, I’m not sure I can ever repay them.
But I can say this much, I will do everything in my power to help Lars and Sophie discover their own niche. The thing that energizes and uplifts them into the people they were always meant to be.
Whether it is mountain climbing, accounting, miming, marine biology, or something I cannot even fathom within the limitations of my own mind.
I will do all that is in my power to help them achieve it.
But this is no great feat it is simply called parenting.
I want them to know that following a dream is never a wasted undertaking. There will be trials to overcome and tribulations to conquer, but if the dream is something worth chasing anything can be attained.
I want my children to understand the importance of finding oneself. To venture into unknown territory, despite the misgivings and naysayers. To acknowledge that standing still for the sake of fear has never fared well for anyone.
I hope to teach them how to summon up the audacity to take a leap of faith. The boldness to walk blindly into a room when one has nowhere else to go but onward. Because this kind of hunger rejuvenates the soul. It feeds that small part of our mind that propels us.
It’s called Oomph; and it is what transforms us into the beautiful individuals we are.
What I desire most for these beautiful little people in my life is that they are both given the opportunity to discover theirs and live with that passion favourably for the rest of their days.
Lindsay Brown is a Sylvan Lake mother of two and freelance columnist.