“I’m going to write a book.” I kissed Hubby and sat in bed with my laptop in hand. Hubby rolled over, unsurprised by grandiose proclamations on my part, turned out his light and whispered, “Okay. Love you—goodnight.”
I wrote until well past 3AM, possessed—determined to spell out the story unfolding in my mind. When I could no longer ignore the burning in my eyes, begging me to sleep. I set my computer on the floor and dreamt of the same story. That was day one.
Today is approximately day 2,000.
In the days between, I have become a mother for a third time, experiencing adoption for the first time. Moved my family across town. Started a blog. Left the state more times than I can count, and visited foreign countries at least five times I can recall off-hand. I ran a 215 mile relay and hundreds of more slow miles in early morning hours. I attended a writer’s conference. Read somewhere in the ballpark of 90 books. Gave innumerable hugs and kisses, laughed and cried often, slept and showered not often enough. Accepted a new job. Volunteered in my community for any number of causes.
In those 1999 days since starting…I lived. And it was good.
But for me, part of good living is following my heart—allowing myself to be passionate and unapologetic about the real me. When I say, “I’m going to write a book.” and a still small voice in my soul replies, “Yes.” The only option for me…is to do it.
It may sound ridiculous and dramatic, but obeying that voice can be terrifying. When the voice agreed adoption was where we would find our son, I was petrified with the fear of what that journey might look like. There were so many questions, and so many fears. I listened to the voice, standing firm in the belief that any choice made in truth and devotion to an authentic life would be the right choice—no matter the outcome.
Recently, I doubted the voice. I argued that a desire to be an author of simple stories was a silly ambition, especially when there are so many superior to me in skill, practice, and achievement.
The voice reminded me I have never rejected the ambition to run, or the title of “runner”; I run as a hobby—an outlet for emotions and an avenue for escape. I have never won, nor is it likely I will ever win, a race…yet I run. The voice reminded me I run for the scenic views and the ache of muscles confirming I’m alive. I run because something deep inside me is compelled to breathe fresh air in time with the rhythmic pounding of pavement. I don’t care what I look like as I place one foot in front of the other. I pay no heed to being fast enough, strong enough, or talented enough…because the experience and the contentment of a finished run is enough for me.
The voice reminded me nothing I do in life is any different from my ambition to “be a runner” if I choose to see it this way.
I am not “a writer” because I have studied the craft for years. I am not a writer because some third party professional legitimizes my claim. I am not a writer because I am determined to win prizes or make lists. I write because something deep inside me is compelled to paint pictures with words. I am a writer because I write.
And tonight when I crawl into bed, I can whisper to both Hubby and The Still Small Voice, “I wrote a book.”