Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Other Side

I might have mentioned before that I think life is a beautiful, wonderful thing. But on occasion, it does have a suckage factor of about a billion. Sure, there is a time for everything... or more prettily put, “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.” But when those times come for breaking down, dying, losing, hating, waring, mourning, weeping, and refraining from embracing, isn’t it easy to forget everything else, all the good stuff? It is all too easy to wallow in all that isn’t. To waste life.

I am going through something, something so normal, so part of life, and yet, so decidedly on the suckage side of the force, and, somehow, I’m finding clarity as I fight to see the good, to remember all the time life offers to plant, to heal, to laugh, to dance, to embrace, to love, to find peace. I’m taking time each day to remember that on the other side of hardship is beauty. That every day we are lucky enough to reach the end of is another chance to work to see the good. It’s not free. We have to fight for it.

Too many people (myself included) have wasted so much time picking through old wounds and never allowing the healing to come, never seeing the beauty on the other side of every loss. I hated it when some sage friends told me that happiness is a choice, but now I believe that more than any other thing in my life. And I choose to be happy. That doesn’t mean that tears aren’t lining up for me as I go through this current hurdle or that my life is bursting with money, fame, power, true love, and Dairy Queen Oreo Blizzards. But I choose to believe that on the other side of this grief, beauty is waiting. Love is waiting. Adventure is waiting. And I wouldn’t give up one good minute even though minutes eventually run out for all of us.

And I want to give credit where it is due and say that when going through anything rough, good friends, good family, and good fiction really help. I’m currently reading the third book in the Anne of Green Gables series (for the first time), and Lucy Maud Montgomery gave the world a wonderful thing in writing such amazingly positive and hopeful stories. She made that choice, because her life was anything but easy.

I hope that everyone out there is choosing happy and seeing their own power in the way they perceive the world. Truly, I believe this is how we change the world.

Quote for the Day from Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery

“Isn’t it splendid there are so many things to like in this world?”

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A Twisted Perspective

Recently, I had a conversation with two wonderful friends, both of whom have recently had a hard time in relationships. I listened anxiously to their experiences, the amazing letdown of a relationship gone wrong, and the subsequent feelings of rejection.

In my twisted writer’s perspective, a part of me thought... “Just one rejection... I’ve got a couple hundred.” Of course, the human in me smothered that line of thinking because rejection is rejection and rejection equals major suckage of the universe. But I did think I should share that tale with my writer friends who can laugh at how twisted this road is and how twisted we who walk it can become.

Rejections are a part of this business we all know. We all accept that we’re going to experience more bumps than smooth sailing. And we stay in the fight because... well, we’re twisted... okay, no, because we’re believers and dreamers and we can’t imagine not believing and not dreaming. We can’t imagine abandoning the parts of ourselves that sneak new stories into our minds while we’re not looking. The parts that show us worlds and characters and allow us to take journeys that maybe others will never truly understand. And even without publishing them, the worlds we create are worthy and have a purpose to their existence.

And we have to take from our rejections only what can help us in the future and drop everything else that can’t. It’s not easy. But in our hearts, we’re fighters. So, we’ll do what’s hard and just keep going, knowing that if the last punch didn’t knock us down, neither will the next one. And truly, it’s only up from here.

Quote for the Day from Cool Hand Luke

Luke: Yeah, well, sometimes nothin’ can be a real cool hand.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Turning Pages... There’s Nothing Better

Gotta say, I love new years. I realize it’s just a relatively arbitrary accounting method designed a very long time ago, but that doesn’t dim the sense of possibility I feel every single time I’m fortunate enough to see a January first... and second... and third. The close of an old year and the beginning of a new one feel to me like turning pages, and I love the sense of wonder that comes with a fresh page (either blank for me to fill or filled with undiscovered words written by someone else). Turning pages brings great freedom to let go of everything that came on the page before... or the year before. 2010 for me was an amazing year, one of greater peace and happiness than I’ve ever known. The power of the contentment I found is that it came from within, not because my goals have panned out or I won the lotto. And I hate to say this out loud (or on paper), but I’m grateful that I found happiness before the tangible reasons for it arrived. I’m grateful for having the chance to evolve more before I get an agent, a publishing deal, or any of the other things I dream of. It does rankle a bit to be grateful for a long and sometimes painful waiting/rejection process, but I am.

2010 also had a darker side of frustrations, hardships, and unfinished things that can now be released because the page has turned and all that wasn’t doesn’t matter as much as the possibility of what could be on this page or the other side of the next page.

Any year that begins with my dreams solidly in place, my loved ones held dear, and a hope that fills me to brimming—now that’s a great first page.

And I’m wishing everyone a hopeful first page. No matter what scars former years leave on us, I say we have the choice to turn the page and live today as free of former pages as we choose to be.

Quote for the Day from T.S. Eliot

“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language and next year’s words await another voice.”