Introspective Collective
a collection of letters


Array of Ambitions

We are entrusted with talents—a pocket-sized gift hidden away within us. Unwrapped, it is a brilliant display of dynamic creativity and is within each of us. 

I recognized my art through an old sketchpad and pen. The notebook had no lined paper, and was already filled with my older brother’s illustrations; they were detailed, perfectly shaded and he always made them seem effortless. I decided I would etch a few notes or scratches and shuffled around in my bag to fish for a writing instrument. The pen I found was stolen from a waitress at a Chinese restaurant and was spotty in between strokes. I feverishly started to compose a letter, after scribbling out a few indistinguishable drawing attempts.

The letter itself was to my mother, a poetry-heavy depiction of my new life since moving cross-country. I was enamored with the potential the future possessed, but was fasted to the past. I was eighteen at the time. With each tiny word inscribed, came revival. I was able to comprehend my current state, dissolving each detail to paper. I snatched out the letter and spoke the words written to my sister, and shared the unfetter my mind felt when I wrote. I started habitually visiting a café where I would write every weekend, and revisit this same feeling. 

Six months later, I dropped my pen for about a year. Suffocating the seed inside that wanted to sprout, I was distancing myself due to self-doubt. I wasn't satisfied with the poems I was producing. Rather than practicing and being patient with myself, I quickly filled my time hollow diversions. Without writing, my mind was cloudy and unable to organize itself, a constant conveyer belt of thoughts and ideas that piled up against a wall. I felt restricted, bound, and apathetic. I thank God that I received support and encouragement from my husband and my sister to start scribing again. 

Over the past few years, the dedication and persistence has grown exceedingly. In the beginning, it was a therapeutic release—but has now madly matured into a passion. If I were to be commended on my poems back then, I would have thrown a shy smile and dropped my head. But this gift has been planted with purpose; it will someday be the orange tree that flowers fruit and blooms.  

These endowments are not always brought to our mind automatically or smooth at the start. Although it begins concealed, once uncovered, it is as if the habit can never be replaced. Writing and painting are sweet endeavors that pull my creativity and solidify my ideas. It embraces the moment, and channels it to a visual translation.

The trades you hold are exquisite and unique to you. Your background, experiences, perceptions, creativity, nor vision that you encompass has been planted identically within another. For we all possess these gifts—this array of ambitions—which have been entrusted to us to propagate and grow.