Keep Calm

Have you ever had a fear that you find hard to put into words? Do you sometimes think that the moment you give it power by acknowledging it, it might come true? So, you hide it, in the recesses of your mind and try your best not to give it validity.

I have such a fear.

I think I have enjoyed writing and storytelling since I was a little girl but found it difficult when my family migrated, and I had to learn a new language. There is a joke among us migrants, that we often use (with great laughter at the end): “I have forgotten my mother-tongue and I haven’t learned to speak the new language!” Thankfully this wasn’t what happened to me, since I can understand, speak, and write both. Yet changing languages as a teenager did set me behind.

I have always enjoyed writing because it feels good to express what is inside. But I think it is only in the past five years that I have found how passionate I am about it, how therapeutic it is for me, how alive it makes me feel and how I need an outlet of writing like a person needs air.

I find words powerful. I agree with Edward Bulwer-Lytton who said in 1839: “The pen is mightier than the sword”.     

Words can heal, mend, wound or destroy. They can motivate or discourage.  Words can take you on a journey of self-discovery, their meaning crystallizes perceptions and motivates change. But ultimately the power of words arises from our emotional responses when we read, speak, or hear them. The right words make all the difference.

So, what is it, I fear? Am I brave enough to voice it, to put the words on paper?

Like a pianist who fears getting arthritis in their fingers, a marathon runner breaking their leg, or a singer getting vocal nodules, I fear I will not be able to continue writing after my brain tumour surgery.

There is a reason people say: “At least it’s not brain surgery”. It turns out that this saying makes those of us who must endure it really nervous.  

I have already survived neurosurgery in the form of spinal cord tumour surgery. That was bad enough with the fear of not being able to walk again, but I have been told I still have two tumours growing on my brain. And apart from the idea of someone cutting my head open, the thought of not being able to express myself in the form of the written word frightens me.

If we are honest, every one of us is afraid of something. We fear losing things because we value them. Being aware of our fear is smart, but we should never trust our fears.

Fear kills more dreams than failure ever will. So, I keep putting pen on paper. I need one of those signs: “KEEP CALM and KEEP WRITING”. That would keep my focus on my passion rather than on my fear. Because we should never let our fear overpower our passion.  

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10 Comments Add yours

  1. Amy says:

    Jaana, your way with words is something special and I too really hope your surgery doesn’t interfere with it. I think your gift which underpins this though is in how you soulfully interpret and express complex thoughts and feelings. You inspire others. If a day ever came when words were not the easiest tool for you to use to do this, something tells me you would find another way. I believe your soul isn’t trapped in the physical matter of your brain, so it’s impossible to physically remove or sever any part of it. I believe that whatever happens, you will find a way to express yourself.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Amy, what wonderful words of encouragement. comfort and hope! I believe you are right, there would be another way. The human body has a remarkable ability to compensate.


  2. Glenn D. Grace says:

    Love your post, and am re-blogging it! Thank you for such a wonderful energy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So happy to hear you love my post and want to re-blog it Glenn! Thank you!!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Glenn D. Grace says:

        You’re welcome. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Anne-Marie says:

    Please keep writing. I agree with Amy. It is never the end of the story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Anne-Marie! I shall keep writing, come rain or come shine!


  4. Hanna says:

    I feel you ❤️.
    I understand your fear. But you are so analytically studying your fear. That is amasing. I think it is the best way to tackle the fear to write it out. Your own way. You are strong and beautiful. Keep on writing ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes Hanna for me writing is the best way to deal with the fear. Thank you, your words help me!!


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