You have the making of a good writer,” so scribbled in my blue book by my Communication I professor. I was a college freshman then.

Oh, Speech ka ba? Mag Writing ka na lang” (So, you are taking up Speech? Why don’t you take up Writing, instead?) then turning to my classmates, he quipped, “She writes quite well.”

This time it was my Humanities professor who always spoke with highfalutin vocabulary egging me to take up Writing instead of Speech Communication. I initially considered taking up Theater arts, but somehow, I had not had an itch for acting when I entered the academic jungle that was UP. (I only got to showcase my prowess in one of my outrageous performances for my English 3 class under the most motherly Professor I ever had and from whom I received a resounding compliment, “Florian, ang galing mo!” (You were good!)

But I was young then… I loved to be in the spotlight— chattering like a parrot. I relegated writing in the backseat—necessary to jot down my daily insights and nothing more. I wrote some scripts for our comedy skits on special occasions at our Christian fellowship, not to mention the countless essays and papers (term, reaction, research, etc) we were required to submit so we could hurdle college and face the real world.

If writing tasks were rammed down your throat until you gagged, your tendency, given the opportunity was to take a clean break off it and breathe. My insomnia returned when I was in college – mainly due to academic pressures which I found out, albeit dismally, had nothing to do with what reality awaited me four years later. Well, I had to do the best I could to survive, and I did by showing my diploma to my parents who equally worked tooth and nail to make my student life bearable.

Since writing became a chore that I needed to do, instead of something I wanted or yearned to get my hands on, I stopped dead on my tracks. I just ventured into reading, and reading, and reading some more. Until…

I realized I loved good writing! I was moved by the interplay of words and the meaning they evoked— how they wrenched my heart, moved me to tears, pushed me to think, and spurred me to act. One day, I just woke up with the not-so-crazy thought that I would dip into the writing pool once more. Whether I’d swim, glide or squirm, and for how long would depend on how it would affect the muse that lay unmoved for years. I would just play it by ear, without the pressures that I had back when I was in the university.

That was almost ten years ago. I started blogging in 2008, and I have never looked back since. No, I have not been as consistent in my posts as I should or as I would have wanted to. But every post I made came out of my heart. They were visceral, and words just flowed freely once I let my heart took over. I wrote simply for the love of it and to keep a record of life’s pinches that were worth brooding over. I have had 80 plus posts so far, so sparse considering the length of time it took me to pen those blog entries. I could have written more. I should have written more.

But there is still time and I am not about to waste it. Boy, am I just glad I found a nurturing online community in My 500 Words. I feel the vibrancy come back. The pen beckons once more.

And like Dory merrily gliding her way even as the surge of current sweeps her, I am going with the flow–relishing each writing moment– one exhilarated gasp at a time.