Why I Stopped Writing

For the longest time, I called myself a writer. If you asked me to describe myself I would say a teen writer and aspiring published author.

It was my dream, my hobby, my outlet, and my main personality trait all rolled into one.

Writing? My oxygen.
Writing? The blood that flowed through my veins.
Writing? My hopes, dreams, and fears transformed into ink on a page.

I remember the moment that I thought I knew that writing was my calling: I was eleven and for my co-op, we had to re-write a fable. I re-wrote a fable that I found to be boring to be funny. That Friday, they had us pass our stories to our classmates, the kid that got mine burst out laughing and turned to the person next to him and said, "You have to read this, it's so funny!"  

The proud feeling in my chest as I watched my classmates laugh at my story felt like a whisper.

Writer. You're a writer. 

It's human nature to take ordinary things, twist them in our minds, and call them supernatural or a "calling" when they're not.

I wrote from then on, short stories, novellas, even a few novel-sized wips. I participated in Nano. I was active in the indie writer community.

Writing became my life.

I even named this blog Writing is Life to reflect that.

And then?

The hardest two years of my life hit.

Fourteen and fifteen.

A lot happened those two years, we got a new "preacher" at this church we had been going to since I was eleven. The youth group there went from questionable to bad. The sermons were empty rants about politics. The people became disgruntled.

Have you ever walked into a room full of people and realized that no one there cared?

It's a terrible feeling and it happened every time I went to the youth group.

A lot happened. In short: it became very toxic.

There were also other huge changes in our lives, and all of this together started to pile up.

And then it fell on me.

I cried every day.
I had breakdowns.
Sensory overloads.
I started binge eating.

I wanted it to end. I thought about how I could kill myself every day.

One night I walked into my room after a breakdown and both of my parents were sitting on my bed.

They asked me what was going on.
They asked me if I had thought about harming myself.
They asked me if I wanted to die.

My mom cried harder than I had ever seen her cry before.

They took away all devices of mine.
They told me I couldn't close the door to my room when I was in it.
They stopped leaving me alone, especially home alone.
My mom made me tell her where I was going always.
I had to tell her that I was going to the bathroom and then go back to her afterward so she would know that I wasn't having a breakdown.

They put me in therapy.

Therapy helped me to cope. I learned ways to calm myself down when I felt a breakdown coming on.

I stopped feeling terrible all the time, but I still felt numb, empty.

I felt broken.
I knew I was.
And I hated who I had become, I hated how everything in my life reflected my brokeness including my weight gain.

Then.... everything in my life started to change....

One day I was sitting in my room doing school when a booming voice interrupted my thoughts, it came from the living room.

A voice that stated verse after verse, I could hear pages flipping. Poking my head out of my room, I saw my mom sitting at our table with the lady she was an assistant basketball coach with.

My mom had invited this woman over because she was interested in hearing her beliefs, she had noticed that this lady acted differently.

I went back to my school work, clueless about what had begun.

My mom started studying with this lady, and after a while, she realized that we hadn't been obeying the Bible, she realized that we had been wrong about everything.

I wrote a paper with all the reasons and verses that I thought disproved the steps of salvation and the need for the baptism for the remission of sins, and it was returned with the verses I had taken out of context corrected.

My mom was baptized. No one in our family agreed with her, but we decided that if it made her feel better.

We started going to a church of Christ congregation, and although I didn't agree with their beliefs, I couldn't deny that I found more love, logic, and Bible knowledge there than anywhere else I had been.

They knew what they believed, they knew why they believed it, and I wanted that.

I didn't sleep for a week. I read my Bible and cried more than I had ever cried in my whole life as the truth hit me full force.

After Christmas, I gave my life to the Lord (video explanation here) and was baptized for the remission of my sins.

I'm not going to lie to you and say that my depressive moods and anxiety episodes magically disappeared the next day, but there was a peace in my heart I had never felt before.

I had hope.

Real hope.

And slowly, my depressive behaviors started to decrease and I started to take care of myself by eating healthy and working out.

"You're on a high," my therapist told me, "you're going to crash soon and go back to normal, you have to be ready for that." 

She didn't approve of all the sudden changes in my life, her eyes widened slightly when I told her about getting rid of my immodest clothes, cutting out the bad words I had been saying, and joining an evangelism class because I wanted to reach out to people who had been like me--lost, without hope.

"You're moving too fast, you're going to have a breakdown after a while, you don't want that." 

I respected my therapist, but I realized that she didn't understand the power of the Lord and his church, so I quit therapy.

I had hard days, but every day I felt better, and I knew I was recovering.

It's been ten months.

Two months since I had my last major breakdown.

I am alive.

I am more than alive--I am redeemed.

How does this explain my lack of writing?

I have changed, I am not the same girl who hid behind fictional worlds and clung to words on a screen for sanity and sense of self.

I realize I wrote in order to cope, I wrote to feel like I had a purpose.

I know my purpose now.

I still plan to write a book one day, but this book will be hated because it will be the truth. That's all I'm going to say about it.
But for now, who am I?

A follower of Christ.
A daughter.
A sister.
A friend.
Me and my best friend + fellow sister in Christ

And am I still a writer?

Well, I write.

 The fact that you are reading these words proves that, so yes, but that word doesn't even begin to describe me.

How about you?

Are you a writer?
What's your story? 


  1. I call myself a writer but that's not my entire entity either. I'm lots of things: A Catholic, a daughter, a historian, a waitress, a farmgirl.....

    Writing, for me, is a way that I can glorify God. I've actually grown a lot in my faith partially because of my writing. God gave me that talent of writing, and it doesn't do me (or Him!) any good to bury that talent under the ground (please forgive the paraphrasing of Holy Scripture!).

    I too quit therapy because my therapist was driving me away from God. I got much better counsel from a nun that I know and I'm now getting my life back together after my own rocking emotional experience (aka grad school)

    Obviously pray about this, but I would encourage you to pick up writing again. We need solid Christian stories that uplift, give hope and joy and address sin in a charitable manner. If the old stories still haunt you, bury them.

    Remember that I (and the rest of the RW team, the indie community and the blogosphere in general) are right behind you :)

    Catherine <3

    1. Thank you, Catherine. <3 I appreciate your support more than anything. <33
      I have been praying about it, I do hope to write again. <33

  2. aww Gray this is so beautiful and I still remember when you said you'd become a Christian and I was so happy and also because I saw the change in you and HELLO I'M ON THE OTHER SIDE OF THE SCREEN. I could still see it and I was so happy and you're a blessing to me ok. Ily 😘

    1. <33 It makes my heart so happy that you could see the change even through a screen, ahhh. <333
      I love you too, friend!! <33

  3. <333
    Gray, I just love this! Honestly, I could see the difference Christ makes right away, when you posted about your conversion. And I love seeing how He helps people grow and heal. xx

    1. Thank you, Danielle! The Lord and His Word is so so powerful. <3

  4. This is definitely something that I can relate to. I will always be praying for you Gray. Know that we are all here for you anytime you need us <3 <3

  5. This is so awesome! And super encouraging. Life is so complicated. I'm learning all time. Thanks for the writing you do!


    1. I'm glad this is encouraging! Life is crazy complicated, but God is good. <33

  6. This was beautiful. I've been through a lot of church issues in the last decade and it eventually built up to the point that I hated church and I hated Christianity because it seemed so empty and full of hypocrisy and abuse and a hundred other things. I didn't hate God, but I think hating church so much did draw me away from God as well. It wasn't really until earlier this year that I helped lead my youth group through the Alpha course and I was able to speak openly to the group about my feelings and I was able to let them go. I relate quite a lot to your journey of working through that pain and depression.
    Thanks for writing this!

    1. <333 Finding the one church that Ephesians 5 talks about is so hard, but if you seek you will find.
      Thank you for reading!

  7. UM WOW WOW. This is beautiful. Girl. I love this so much!

  8. Aww, Gray this was beautiful!! I love it so much! I am so happy that God placed that woman in y'all's life who helped change it for the better! <3 <3

    1. Thank you so much, Abigail! We thank God for her <333

  9. The pictures of youuu! Your so good lookin!! Actually you remind me a lot of my older sister.

    I feel bad for only commenting cuz I tagged you, but... haha

    -Lexah @littlerancher.blogspot.com

    1. Aww, thank you, sweet girl1

      And don't feel bad, thanks for tagging me. <3

  10. Gray, you are so amazing! The truth that shines from you is so beautiful!!! I am so, so, so, sorry that you went through such a terrible time, but it makes me incredibly happy to hear that you have found hope. Never forget how much you are loved!! <333333

    1. You're too kind, friend <333
      Don't be sorry for me, I learned so much from it.

  11. This is so beautiful and broken, and I don't even know how to comment about this because it's...it's very raw and heartfelt.

    I'm sad you had to go through all that, but at the same time, I'm thankful for your journey. You have such an amazing story, filled with all sorts of things, and I congratulate you for not giving up, and I thank the Lord for grabbing hold of you when He did. <3333

    I myself am a writer, but it's not necessarily a hideaway for me. I don't go to writing when I'm depressed or low or any of those things. For me, writing is actually a way to express me better and to possibly help the world through the messages I place in my books.

    I want to be raw and real when I write, I don't want to be artificial, and I don't want to hide behind writing like it's a shield that protects me from the world.

    I'm very proud of you for realizing the things you did, even if it means you aren't really writing any more. You often make me think until my brain feels as if it will burst, but that's always a good thing!! ^^

    Love ya, friend!

    ~ Lily Cat (Boots) | lilycatscountrygirlconfessions.blogspot.com

    1. <3 I'm very thankful for my journey as well, it's taught me so much.
      Writing can be so wonderful. <333
      Love you too, thanks for reading!

  12. I'm so glad that all you went through brought you to Christ, and you've grown so much. I'm super proud of you, and so thankful for the work God has done in you. <3

    Do you mind if I quote this line: "It's human nature to take ordinary things, twist them in our minds, and call them supernatural or a "calling" when they're not."? I've experienced this, too, and I think it's a really interesting topic to talk about.

    1. Thank you, sweet friend! <3

      And quote away, I look forward to reading that post. <33

  13. I'm so glad you have found hope, Gray! You are such a sweet friend and I love you so much!!

    I'm just wondering tho...it seems like you are always mentioning the "body of Christ" or a church, or the Lord...but what about Jesus? The name of Jesus wasn't even mentioned once in your post. Jesus is what saves us. Not baptism. Not works. Not people. Not even a church. The only name that can save is the name of JESUS. (Acts 4:12)

    I'm really not trying to start a fight here. I just want to simply point out that you say "Christ" and "Lord", and talk about your church and the Bible all the time...but ultimately Jesus is the LORD! Jesus is the Word! Jesus is the Christ (anointed one)! We all need to remember to not follow people or a church, but pick up our cross and follow Jesus. (Mark 8:34) <33

    1. John 20:31
      But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name.

      Acts 17:3
      Opening and alleging, that Christ must needs have suffered, and risen again from the dead; and that this Jesus, whom I preach unto you, is Christ.

      Acts 18:28
      For he mightily convinced the Jews, and that publicly, shewing by the scriptures that Jesus was Christ.

  14. This is so beautiful. I'm so happy you've come so far and it makes total sense to me why you would need to stop writing the way you once did.

    Your passion for serving the Lord is so obvious and never fails to inspire me. <3


    1. Thank you so much for your kind words, Emily. <333

  15. This was so interesting to read. I think writing should never consume someone's life, but just be something you enjoy doing. I'm glad you grew in your faith. <3

    1. I agree with you wholeheartedly, thank you. <3

  16. Wow, I knew bits of pieces of this of course..but still. I feel so bad for your hard times, but so glad you're pulling through.

    I write. It's not all I do is it doesn't define me, but it is a huge part of who I am.

    MB> keturahskorner.blogspot.com
    PB> thegirlwhodoesntexist.com


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