Confessions of a Mama/ Author- Writer
(Okay, I know that’s silly, but it’s my way to describe the Parent/Writer.)
It’s not easy to squeeze your dreams into the crevasses of Cheerio-covered, I’m-going-to-be-on-the-news-as-the-only-woman-to-have-suffocated-by-her-laundry, leftover time.
In all honesty, as sad as it is, it would be easier not to have a dream. Yeah, how’s that for a Doomsday Debbie opening for you? Sorry to start off like that. Not exactly the ‘I Have a Dream’ speech, huh? I don’t think Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. would have been nearly as successful with a starter like that. Here’s the deal, and I’m sure many can relate, I’m a busy mom and I have a physically and emotionally draining day job. Sometimes I think it would be easier to not have that drive and constant nagging desire to put words on a page. That being said, to wish my dream to be a writer away is a little like wishing I didn’t have a part of myself– as writing is so much entwined with my heart, my soul, and essentially, who I am.
So, this isn’t so much a gripe-fest, as it is a chance to laugh at myself and maybe commiserate a little bit with those out there that can relate to being a parent and a not-quite-yet full-time aspiring author. I also don’t want anyone to mistake my love for my children. They are sooo precious to me and are in no way an inconvenience, but a blessing to my husband and I. Again, this is more of an opportunity to admit frustrations in balancing the different aspects of my life, which I’m sure others will acknowledge with the ‘nod and smile’.
Here are some ways in which you may recognize yourself as a Mauthor or Fauthor like me:
Let’s laugh, shall we? Anyone got an ‘Amen’ for any of these?
- A perfect example just occurred while trying to write this blog post. I’m trying to work in a few minutes while my daughter’s playing and meanwhile she is pushing my rocking chair back and forth, bopping me on the head with a ball, and shouting ‘Poop!’, which inevitably means I need to change her diaper (and by the way, I had just changed her only minutes before). Sigh.
- The complex worlds, the characters, the poignant heartrending dialogue, hilarious snappish retorts, evasive conclusions and connections you’ve been trying to work out for weeks, inevitably come during an epic sibling fight or dinner boiling over.
- You have ever written your latest action scene on the back of a grocery list or the receipt from the last diaper run. (Done this too many times to count! Sometimes their just isn’t a piece of paper when you need one!)
- Your book and character outlines have crayon scribbles, and some brownish green gunk that looks suspiciously like either boogers or some kind of fruit snack. You’re hoping for the love all thing sacred that it’s a fruit snack.
- The only ‘alone’ time you have is in the bathroom, so you tend to brainstorm while doing your ‘business’, but right in the middle of a good idea there are those sweet, pudgy little fingers poking underneath the bathroom door and shouts of ‘Mommy!’
- You realize just how loud the click-clack of your typing and the steady, almost silent hum of your laptop can be when you’re trying not to wake the sleeping child nestled up against your leg.
- During a long exhausting albeit love-filled day, you fantasize about all of the writing you are going to get done after all the meals, dishes, cleaning, boo-boo kissing, story-reading, laundry, sweeping, monkey-bathing, etc. is done. Only when all is finally quiet and said monkeys are in bed, you try sometimes unsuccessfully to keep your eyes open and your brain focused long enough to put two words together that make sense.
- You sometimes use the silly imaginative things your children say and do in your story like a sweet little reminder of why you’re doing what you’re doing. You want to follow your dreams but you also want to teach your children to never give up on theirs.
Keep writing my friends! Take a deep breath. Even when it’s hard, keep writing. Even when you don’t feel like it, keep writing. Even when it seems impossible, keep writing. Even when you’re tired, keep writing. I’ll do the same. I firmly believe that God gives us gifts and talents, and plants dreams in our hearts to use for His Kingdom and even when all hope seems gone, I’m going to use mine. How about you?
P.S. Perhaps this is TMI, but as I type the last words on this post my youngest child pointed out to me she coughed up something on the carpet. Once more into the fray. Deep breath.
Image courtesy of Ambro on freedigitalphotos.net