If She Is To Write

I have not quoted Shakespeare in a while, but I feel I must do so here. Though, perhaps, a cliche line, Polonius’ advice to his son still holds true, beyond all other phrases spilled out by characters who likely never realized the full depth and importance of what they said:

“This above all: to thine own self be true, 
And it must follow, as the night the day, 
Thou canst not then be false to any man.” 

~Shakespeare’s Hamlet

 

Above all else.

 

It is important in all relationships, of all variation, to have a sense of one’s own truth. No matter how close you are to someone, no matter how much you trust them, you must have a sense of your own self, your own soul. You must keep, for your sanity, a sanctuary of mind.

 

So we come to Virginia Woolf and A Room Of One’s Own. Truly one of the only things I recall from my single semester of Intro to Women’s Studies, the following words have echoed through the life of this part time artist, and resonate still, both in hobby and in profession.

 

“A woman must have money and a room of her own if she is to write fiction.”

~Virginia Woolf’s A Room of One’s Own

 

If she is to write fiction. Or if she is to write nonfiction. Or poetry. Or create anything at all.

 

 

The need for a room of one’s own has so much to do with personal needs, more than it is a reaction to those around one.

 

As I sit cross legged on our bed, a wall dividing our spaces, I am able to freely spill my thoughts upon a page, a step removed from my beloved husband. My trust for him is greater than I have for any creature. I have no fear of stepping wrongly either in words or any other ways in front of him.

Yet, seeking the innermost secrets in the inner most chambers of my very own being is something I alone can do.

Sometimes it is the quietest solitude of my own breath that can tell me what my truth is.

For you must be able to know your deepest thoughts alone, thoroughly secure, before you can falteringly or confidently give your truth in any measure to another being.

Separate yourself from distraction, from the needs of others, from even the loving attention of your dearest companions. Take time for yourself and your art and your truth. For one needs a room – a space – of one’s own to create honest wonders.

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