One Year: a journey toward the obvious
There are many things in my day…many “I gottas” which are…hmmm…well…TOXIC. They subtract more than they add, but this? This writing and sharing exercise? This free therapy? It adds, and adds and adds.
A few months ago I had a little epiphany. It was on a busy saturday full of single parenting and 3 kids with needs screaming. I was making mad dashes around the house AND mid-relay grabbing pieces of paper and jotting thoughts down.
It occurred to me that:
A – most sane people probably don’t do this and
B – maybe it’s time to admit something.
Don’t laugh, but somehow – the stacks of journals that I’ve kept as long as I can remember, and the fact that it’s not unusual for me to take a couple hundred pictures in a day hadn’t clued me in…
God designed me to write, to capture and release. He designed me to love creating in these ways…little things that refract bits of his magnificence…in the way the trees sway, in dappled light on my son’s face, in little toes dancing…
I thought I had to be exceptional to embrace writing. But why?
When I began this blogging venture, I was hesitant to say that anything official-sounding about my love of photography or writing. I thought that would be presumptuous of me. Maybe it is. But really, whether I write, photograph or create well…that’s another matter entirely. I’m pretty sure God sees right past false-modesty.
And perhaps, if I’m really being honest, there is the fact that there are more than a few moms out there that blog and photograph. And then there is my husband’s favorite quote about blogging –
It does make me smile, but it also made me wonder. Did I need to send my words and photos into the abyss?
I switched majors in college like crazy. Couldn’t decide between about a dozen things. I think we all wonder, ALL THE TIME: What am I meant to be doing? What career path should I take? We feel a DESIGN toward something deep within us, and yet it’s so hard to put our finger on it!
Ultimately I think we are designed to delight in God…but this takes many shapes and forms. There are certainly different ways of learning and knowing a thing…for some of us, light comes to our eyes through a pen and paper.
So today I can say: I was made to write, create, photograph, jot down, scribble, do anything I can to capture and share the beauty around me. This doesn’t mean that I do or don’t do it well…only that it was and is my design, and that I find joy in it. And whether it encourages 1 person or 1,000 doesn’t really matter. We were made to share and walk alongside one another.
So here is to a year-long journey to being able to say the obvious – I am a writer! …and I don’t think this changes a thing, only that I’m not afraid of a word – a label.
WRITING WITH MY KIDS
And one more thing I’d like to add…the whole bit about running around my house and trying to care for my kids and write… Yes. I fail in this, at times. I’m also learning. I don’t want my kids to think for a minute that I prized scribbling above them…or that I kept my passion closed away from them.
So…this is what I’ve done lately…and LOVE it! I do what I love to do: go to grab coffee and flip through books and write BY MYSELF…only I don’t go by myself. I’ve done this WITH my girls a few times (Blue was in school-and bird watching is one of our mom-things), and brought a journal along for them. They draw. They tell stories. I scribble down the stories with them. They read and look at pictures and sip chocolate milk. It’s OUR time.
And you know…you need to hear the standard disclaimer – and you need to believe it…not that lie that often pervades. This is not my everyday. I fail. I fail daily. Several days sometimes pass without my reading to my kids, playing with them. I get immersed in tasks and have them chasing me around the house while I’m on the phone. It’s often NOT PRETTY. I crumble at the end of many days. “Arsenic Hour” is a term that made me cringe when I first heard it (and still does). Is there a better name for it? But that crazy hour or 3 that begins around 5…it happens here too. But sometimes, some beautiful times – we make up stories together. We watch birds. We take pictures. We play.
…and about it all. I write. I document. I count. I delight. Recording these things brings me extra delight in all God has given.
Delight yourself in the Lord; And He will give you the desires of your heart. – Psalm 37:4