Back over the summer I wrote a post on my blog about how I’d never run out of inspiration because I had children. You can find the post >here<. The summer had my children (and I include my husband in this designation) building a boat in our pool (see, the photo). It also had the children playing putt-putt golf in a thunderstorm. Needless to say, at the first sign of lightning, my boys abandoned my husband, holding all the golf clubs, and bolted for our room. For more details, please check out my post on my blog. Anyway, I have a somewhat colorful life. But sometimes even that’s not enough to get the words on the page.
Hopefully, you’ve read James A Owen’s fabulous post on this site. He might call it inspiration, but what he’s done in his life takes a whole heck of a lot of courage. He awes me.
A deep dark secret is I tend to lean toward the depressive side. It’s often hard to find the reason to get out of bed, or not crawl back into it, pull up the covers and hide in the dark once I’ve gotten out the first time. How strong the urge to hide is depends on what’s going on. My last three months have been chaotic. The law firm I was part of split up months before it was projected to and left me scrambling in the busiest month I had to make agreement for a new practice, whether it was solo, with most of the original partners but as an employee rather than a partner myself, or a new firm where I would likely be a partner by the end of the year. The woman I consider my second mother is dying of cancer. It was caught late, and she opted not to undergo chemo. She’s getting hospice care now. My father has Lewey Body Dementia. It’s a nasty disease where, essentially your brain forgets how to talk to your body. He’s having more bad days than good. My folks are trying to take a Disney cruise for their 51st anniversary this week, but now there’s a hurricane threatening. Thanks Sandy. I have a crazy neighbor, and that’s a whole ‘nother story. And that’s just a list of the big issues. There were, of course, other challenges. As a result, earlier this month, I learned what it took to break me. Not an experience I recommend to anyone or wish to repeat. So, lately, my reason to get out of bed was solely that I had no choice.
Well, not solely. There were those pesky kids again. And the peskier husband. And James and his Superman ring.
Those pesky kids that spent all summer sailing that boat from one side of our very small pool to another. If we’d actually had a breeze, the boat probably would have broken the pool. But they loved it. My husband and I kept promising we’d get the boat out of the pool and into the nearby lake. Didn’t happen. And the kids didn’t care.
We have fabulous kids even if they have no common sense. Even as I write this they are fighting over who has to change the “input’ for the TV so they get cable rather than snow. This fight become more ridiculous when you consider that the TV has to be turned on manually – we’ve lost the original remote and no universal one works with this TV- so my oldest was next to the button he needed to push to fix the problem had he waited 5 second instead of walking back to the sofa. Instead. I had to get up, go down stairs, yell/laugh at them for the lack of common sense and hit the input button. Sadly, this wasn’t their most asinine fight.
Here’s the thing, for me at least. I’ve lived through some terrible things, and I’ll live through more as long as I keep seeing the sun rise. Although this last thought is a good argument for becoming a creature of the night. There are always going to be terrible things happening in life. Sometimes all those terrible things will happen at once.
And then there’s the Superman ring. For a very sick child, Superman became a symbol of hope. We still have James A. Owen because of it. Because of hope, James has found the strength to say “no” and the strength to go on through some really terrible things.
What’s my Superman?
My husband does fairly outrageous things to make me laugh. I can’t tell you what he just did without losing our “clean” rating, but I laughed so much I had tears streaming down my cheeks. Where was I again?
Oh, yes, finding the strength to chase the life you want. Not the dream. Staying something is a dream means it’s not, and can’t be, real. You fight toward The Goal, the straight line James talks about. Life’s about finding the will to keep walking that thin line, even when you stumble, even whn you have to resist the urge to lie down and give up, it’s about moving forward when you have to crawl and your knees and hands are bloody from the effort.
You have to believe.
I believe in my sons’ laughs. I believe in fighting through one more day that brings me closer to The Goal. I believe that standing for what I want most makes me a better person for my family, makes me a better writer, makes me a better lawyer. Time in the crucible stinks, but it reforges us stronger.
What do I want most?
I want to spend more time with my family, continue as a professional writer (to put the right words for the story on the page), and have the freedom to take the law cases I want, not that I have to to pay the bills. I want to see my epic fantasy in print, to hold that book in my hands regardless of how long that takes. If I keep The Goal in mind, the choices I need to make are obvious, even though they are often not easy. So, I get out of bed, throw the curtains open wide and get down to the job of life.
What do you want? What inspires you to keep pressing forward to that goal?