At one point in my life, I wanted to move to Boston and be a clinical psychologist. I had it all planned out. I would live in a cute little apartment while I got my Ph.D. and eventually did a residency at Mass Gen. Why Boston? That’s where I wanted to go to college but didn’t get accepted. But I had visited the city and completely fallen in love. In my extended reverie, I was going to meet my future husband in the hospital cafeteria. He was going to be some kind of doctor. We would bond over random things like the bumper sticker on our cars and our mutual love for Chinese food. We’d date, we’d get engaged, we’d move to the suburbs—my eighteen-year-old self had her heart set on Weston—and then we’d live a happy life with two kids, a dog, and a Pinterest-worthy house.
And then I realized I hated psychology. Okay, hate is a strong word. I realized that I only liked a small section of psychology. I realized that I didn’t want to do four to six more years of psychology. I realized that I liked writing more.
I was writing analysis papers when I wanted to be writing fiction. I was reading textbooks when I wanted to be reading novels. At the end of the day, I was so exhausted that all I could do was crawl into bed and fall asleep. It didn’t take me long to figure out that I didn’t want to do this for another day; let alone for the rest of my life.
A couple days later, I told my mom I didn’t want to go to grad school and instead, I wanted to focus on trying to publish a book. I prepared for her to tell me that I had to go to grad school. I thought she would get mad and yell and try to “put me back on track”. But she didn’t. She said, “Okay, if that’s what you want. I’ll help you get there and support you along the way.” And to this day she has been my greatest help, my biggest cheerleader, and the best momager I could ask for.
Now, I don’t want this to sound like the reason why I want to write is so I don’t have to do more school. Or because I picked a major I wasn’t completely in love with. I want to write because I had to choose my happiness over the traditional path of college, grad school, Ph.D., job.
I wanted to be happy. I didn’t want to wake up every morning and loathe going to work. I didn’t want to wish away my life by begging for the day to be over just so I could go home and sleep. I didn’t want to be living for just two measly days off only to have to dread the ending of the weekend. I’m a firm believer in loving what you do. And I love writing. Writing doesn’t make me wish I could just go home and crawl into bed. Writing doesn’t make me want to extend the weekend out five extra days. Writing makes me happy in a way that nothing else does.
So that’s the long way of saying: I want to write forever.