Updated: Oct 22, 2020
My friend joked the other day that he was the only one of his friends who hadn't started a podcast in 2020. Ironically, my husband and I were getting ready to officially launch our podcast, Fruitful Sessions, soon after. We're living in a time when everyone is excited and motivated to share their voice and I think that's a beautiful thing. Of course, we must do our due diligence to ensure that the voices we allow ourselves to listen to and act on are wise and light-bearing, but I'm still encouraged to see people in my generation not being afraid to do what they love or act on a passion or gift.
My journey with the pursuit of creative storytelling began before I can even remember. Stories of other worlds and characters with strange similarities to people around me always filled my imagination. I remember starting to write my first novel at 8. I wasn't encouraged to write, nor was I discouraged. But, at the time my family thought that because of how easily I excelled in the classroom that I should set my pursuit on something different - practicing medicine.
Honestly, I don't even remember how it began. All I can recall is being in high school and being told that's what I always wanted to be. So, I pursued internships and applied to the universities that would make that dream a reality. I never really thought about if it was "my" dream. Not far into my studies at the Universities of Florida, I would be confronted with this very question. Ironically, I was the one who posed it to my newfound freshman friends. "What job would you do if every job in the world paid the same and you didn't have to worry about money?" I asked as we stuffed our faces with free pancakes, boxed eggs, and sausages from Midnight Breakfast.
"I would probably travel and take photos of the different countries I visit," shared a friend. "I would still want to be a doctor and help people," shared another. "If I could start all over again, I would want to study directing so that I could tell stories and make movies," I confessed. This was the first time I'd share my real dream with anyone. The thought would lie dormant for some time after that.
In May of 2014, I graduated with a Bachelors in Health Education due to a lack of discipline in my pre-med courses. I figured that if I still majored in the health field, I could continue with a post-bac and apply to medical school later. But soon after graduation, I realized I would rather live, see the world and gain experience to find out what I really wanted to do with my life.
I would end up working for various prestigious non-profits and work my way steadily up the non-corporate ladder. I was desperately hoping that some way on the journey I would find my passion. In the midst of this pursuit, I met the man who is my future husband at church while co-leading a small group. He was obviously a passionate lover of Christ and leader, but what also stood out me about him was how creative and motivated he was. A commercial photographer by day, he was also self-taught on the piano and guitar. When we started courting I would share my dreams of public speaking and writing and to my surprise, he didn't laugh or tell me how ridiculous I was being. Instead, he asked me questions and made me feel supported as he came up with ideas to help me thrive. It was then I could see him as my partner building a lifetime of creativity together.
My youtube Channel was birthed not long after we got married. We had a honeymoon baby, not planned by us, but we know God makes no mistakes. During my maternity leave from work, I found myself writing blogs and planning out "talks" to help young women grow in their faith. Later, I found out that I wouldn't be able to return to work and saw it as a God-given opportunity to devote my time to raising my son and fully pursuing a career as a creative storyteller.
On November 7, 2018, I published my first video and was met with overwhelming positive and supportive feedback from my family and friends. I decided to launch my website/blog in February to supplement the content I was producing on my Youtube Channel and to provide multiple ways for those interested in growing in their faith to gain access.
Although, I'm still very much at the beginning of my creative storytelling journey - I'm so thankful to everyone who has shown me support and love throughout all of it. And if this serves as anything, I pray it would serve as encouragement and motivation to you that you can do that idea or passion project you've been dreaming about.
Remember, "you miss 100% percent of the opportunities you never go for."