I Need a Julia*

I’ve been watching the movie Julie and Julia for the past few days. It’s nearly impossible for me to watch an entire movie in one sitting, so I watch while I fold laundry, prep dinner or wash dishes. I was in the mood for an easy, feel good film this week and this one fit the bill perfectly…. in more ways than I expected it would.

If you’ve never seen it, it follows the story of a modern day woman named Julie who is about to turn 30. She’s a would-be author who is frustrated that she isn’t yet where she wants to be in life, so she decides to set a goal for herself: to cook her way through Julia Child’s entire cookbook, and record her experiences in a blog as she goes along. As her story unfolds, it parallels back in time with Julia Child’s story as she embarks on the mammoth task of writing and publishing her cookbook. It’s based on a true story, and it’s just one of those films that makes you want to curl up on the couch and eat absolutely everything that she’s cooking… while wearing pearls, of course.

I’ve seen it before, but Julie’s story really hit home for me this time. I saw so much of myself in her… the desire to write and be read, wanting to accomplish something, wondering if your thoughts are floating around unread in the universe while obsessively checking to see if anyone has commented, and mostly, feeling like I start a million things but never finish anything. Julie struggles to find herself through the story, beginning by writing for others, but ending realizing she needed to do it for herself. In the movie, Julia’s story motivates Julie to find her own. I need a Julia.

I have always felt this pull to write. Always. I’ve picked at journals off and on over the years, I wrote my first “book” in grade one, I went through an intense poetry phase in high school, dabbled with lyrics, and written short stories, but blogging has always felt the most like home to me. Writing is my joy, my therapy, my passion and often my never ending frustration. I have all these things that I want to do, but seem to lack the motivation to actually do them.

SO, Julie has inspired me. In the film she sets a goal to cook her way through Julia Child’s entire cookbook in one year. As I watched I realized that I needed to set a concrete goal with an end date to get myself writing again. To get myself writing for me again. I’ve tried this before, but it’s been a while and I feel ready to try again.

I am going to write every day for the month of September. It’s a small goal, but it also feels big as I haven’t written with any regularity in so long. I feel like I’ll have lots I’ll want to record and vent about as M and I navigate my return to work, H starts J/K, S goes into grade one and P continues to climb everything in my house. I’m going to try and write without too much editing or stressing about the reaction I’ll get from others. I constantly fear judgement, but I need to let that go if I want to write freely.

September is going to be me, unfiltered. The good, the bad, the ugly.

I’m nervous.

But excited too. I can do this.

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