Photo by Matt Hoffman on Unsplash

Sometimes, the best advice doesn’t come from family at all. For most of my life, this is a phrase that has always rung true. The advice that I was given came from complete strangers or very close friends, those who chose to support me no matter what project I decided to take on, and would be my virtual cheerleader, often being the first to swoop up my latest short read, poetry or photography. My family really didn’t see my hobby as a true career and never really encouraged me to hone my talents to something that could lead to success down the road. I was the different one, the dreamer, the creative who would spend hours tucked in her room, drawing, and writing, who put together poetry from gazing at a photo. Most of what I’ve accomplished has been done on my own.

From time to time, I would hit a roadblock and start doubting myself. I think every one of us has those moments where we really do question our why, our purpose, and if we are really headed in the right direction or if we’ve made a horrible mistake. I too, get a case of the “what ifs” I am a very pragmatic person and do not take leaps unless I know where I’m going to land. I can tend to be a worry-wort when it comes to taking on new projects of my own, funny because I’m a total protagonist when it comes to championing someone else’s. I’m the first one to rally the troops, stand on my soapbox and start holding up a sign telling the person they are great and to go for it.

The best advice I’ve received was from the Mother of a close friend. I was very hesitant to actually self-publish my very first book; being such a newbie, I believed that the only way to do it right was to have an agent. This woman knew my struggles, having made a very famous career of her own. What she said spurred me to take the steps to put my work out there.
“You are still young and have a great deal of time to decide what you truly want in your life, use the talent that you have and create something beautiful, don’t sit in despair, be happy.” I took her advice and never looked back. To this day she has been my support system and has never faltered; someone that considers me like a daughter and I think of her like family too.

It is very true what they say about family not always being blood. I never have to question if I’m accepted, I know deep down that I am and always will be.