I have been in the eye of the storm before. Literally. Growing up in the swamps of Louisiana and living less than 50 miles from the Gulf of Mexico gave me many opportunities to witness this particular force of nature. It never made much sense to me that our school would open for the new school year in late August. This almost guaranteed that we would never make it to class those first few days because we would be running for the nearest shelter as our annual hurricanes would visit our little town. I always managed to come away from those moments unharmed, but while in the middle of those gale force winds I was never quite sure of the outcome.
Yesterday I witnessed a personal hurricane come my way. I'm sure you have weathered a few yourself over the years. Somehow the stresses of your job, your personal life, and your writing come together in a perfect storm. It's solitary mission is to attempt to knock you off your feet. Gale force winds of frustration, disappointment, and self-doubt over even the smallest things can throw you off course and make you wonder if you will ever see the eye of the storm. And then suddenly, you're in it. The eye of the storm. A moment of calm clarity when you get a chance to take a breath, steal a moment for yourself, and realize that there really isn't anywhere else you would rather be in your life than right here.
Maybe it's because I am such an extreme optimist. Maybe it's because I've had to deal with a number of things in my life that give me the perspective I have. Maybe it is the encouraging words of a new found friend who helped to calm the waters long enough for me to get a better grip on the railing. You know who you are and I thank you!
I'm sure you have heard the old saying, "When life gives you lemons, make lemonade"? Well here is my twist on that..."When life throws you a perfect storm, turn it into a work of art"...
Oh yeah, something else I'm going to do when I'm feeling the stress of everyday writing a wee bit too much. I'm not going to sit on the island all by myself and stew in my frustrations and self doubt. I'm going to reach out to my new friends in the writing community and let them know how I'm feeling. Gathering their encouraging words around me, I will know I can step out of the eye and tackle whatever that storm wants to throw at me!