This post wasn’t planned out. I sorta just felt like speaking from my heart, and what my heart is feeling a tad bit sentimental. So here I go:

When I was younger I was never much of an athlete. My classmates were praised for their basketball skills while I sat in the corner to read. It wasn’t until fairly recently when I began to grow an interest in fitness. Back then, writing was what compensated for that feeling of not being able to run an eight-minute mile. Hearing my teachers praise me for an essay I wrote or a reflection paper was enough to make me feel whole again.

Now that I’m older I’ve noticed how easy it is to get sucked into society. I’m not saying it’s a bad thing. But when I go to school and look around, the campus isn’t filled with individual people. Instead, it’s clumps of like-minded teens. It’s easy to make friends and get sucked into the social world, and that’s not a bad thing, as long as it’s kept in moderation. Writing was the one thing that tied me down. It’s been there to keep my eyes set on a goal, to keep me from slipping into the crowd.

Everyone has something they do when they’re feeling down. Some people pray. Others talk it out. Sing. Bake sweets. Binge-watch shows. For me, that thing is writing. Nothing can relieve my stress more than a nice writing session. I can fling my feelings onto the page and hope they settle along with it, and most of the time, they do. Writing has kept me from feeling like I’m alone by reminding me that I never am. I always have words.

Writing opens up my creativity. It’s helped me to look at everything from a different perspective. The process of creative something out of nothing has taught me soooo much. Without writing, I would probably still be following my mom’s advice on pursuing the medical career, something I’d tried to be interested in but never could be. Writing has taught me that if you think creatively, there is always an alternative.

I’m sure everyone wants to leave behind a legacy. After you die, what will be left? Will you be nothing than a name on To some people their goal is to star in a hit movie, find a cure for cancer, or some other phenomenal thing. To me, I just want to leave words. I want to leave behind this website and how it’s impacted me and others around the world. I want to leave behind a few books I’ll be proud of until I die, as well as some videos I’ve poured my heart into. I aspire for writing to be a large part of what I leave behind during my time on Earth.

Writing has kept me sane. I like to think I’ve remained sane by myself, but that would be a lie. Words themselves have brought me to so many new people around the world. And these connections have changed me in a variety of ways. It’s like one giant chain reaction, all beginning with words.

Sure, I have other hobbies. Music and film-making also play a huge part in my life. But have they kept me sane? I don’t know. In the times when I’m feeling down, I haven’t found myself being cheered up by reaching for my guitar or working on editing a new video. To me, those hobbies are only distractions. Writing is the largest action that shapes my identity.

So you read my post. Go ahead and take what you want from it. I just have one question for you before you click off the tab:

What keeps YOU sane?

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Melissa Torrefranca

Hello writers of the world! I'm Melissa, the founder / designer of Teen Authors Journal. Although I create blog posts every Tuesday at 4 p.m. (Pacific Time), I have absolutely no clue what I'm doing! I'd love to learn more about all of you, so please don't hesitate to shoot me a message! 🙂

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