Wednesday night on Twitter the hashtag #keepgoing was making waves, giving authors and writers a chance to show where they were a year ago (or even further) and where they are now. A lot of people found in inspiring.
I found it depressing. And I tweeted this, and got a lot of great tweets back. Had some conversations that made me cry (both happy and sad) and left my mind whirling. Took me forever to fall asleep!
I’ve touched on my doubts in a few recent posts, but never fully explained everything. But, I feel like I need to get this out of my system, so grab some popcorn and read on to my word explosion.
I struggle with whether or not I can give writing what it needs to get published. I am not writing to write, I am writing to get published. And right now, I don’t get the time to devote to writing enough to feel like I’m moving forward. I feel like I’m treading water a lot…still wishing and hoping for more time, better words, finishing revisions.
But, most of all…I feel like I’m wasting time. I’m wasting time with my family. Instead of being with them, I’m writing. Or instead of watching Friday Night Lights on Netflix (our new obsession) with Brett, I’m revising (again).
This question is always on my mind: Is it worth missing all this for a dream that has a good percentage chance of never coming true?
I know a lot of my current mental state is exhaustion related. My 7-month old baby is still figuring out the whole sleep thing…we’ve gotten a few 5-hour stretches lately, but that’s a new thing. Otherwise, he’s been up at night. A lot. Meaning, I’m always, always tired. And my 4-year old has a lot of medical struggles so we’re at a lot of Dr appointments and are currently looking at possibly two surgeries by the end of this year. That takes a lot out of me, mentally and emotionally, leaving me bone-tired by the time they’re in bed. There isn’t much left over for writing.
My super wise friends Tameka and Jessica provided some amazing conversation that night on Twitter. Reminding me that dreams take time to achieve. Reminding me that my words are good. Reminding me that even in the lonely world of writing (because, so much of this takes place with fictional people and only with my computer) that there is support and people and success.
I need to give myself permission to WASTE TIME. I’m a go-getter. I’m a goal-oriented person. These are great skills at a desk job or in college, but put that in a creative arena without a clear guaranteed path to success…I SUCK. My nerves hate it.
But, I want to do this. I want people to meet Olive and Vi from The First Drop and I want the SNI in my mind to be written, for people to experience the lake in my hometown.
So, the next time Brett says – GO TO THE LIBRARY AND WRITE – I need to GIVE MYSELF PERMISSION to pursue this. After all, if Sammie or Emmett wanted to pursue writing or painting or some other dream…wouldn’t I support them and tell them to do it? Why not give myself that same support and cheerleading?
And, I originally said I wanted to give myself the 5 years I’ll be a SAHM to pursue this. I need to give myself that time. It’s not wasted if I’m having fun and making friends in the writing community, right?