I used to believe that I was inherently, obsessively organized. Rational, objective, analytical: left brain all the way. I carried my four-color pen everywhere, as evidence.
I used to believe that I was an all-or-nothing kind of girl. If I wasn’t the best, I didn’t bother, and if I didn’t do something every day, I didn’t do it at all.
I used to believe that there was a right way, and that I was on it. Then I believed that there was a right way, and I was definitely not on it. Then I realized that things might be just a tad more complicated than I thought.
Turns out the four-color pen might have been a nod to my visual, creative side. Without the structure of school and studying, I am intuitive, holistic, comfortable with chaos: pretty damn right brained.
There are a number of things I love – like sewing, and cooking, and working out, and writing proper letters on pretty paper – that I do infrequently. It’s a big world, after all, with only so many hours each day.
This realization – the shades of gray and the utter acceptability of inhabiting them – came from my directions. My husband taught me to love what I’d always defined as faults; my children forced me to confront creative (and not so creative) chaos; I let myself grow up.
I also let myself write.
For years I denied that I was a writer. Writing belonged my my Pulitzer-Prize-winning grandfather, my editor parents and uncles, my husband. But once upon a time, from the bottom of a well, I admitted it. I would rather write than just about anything else, and if I give myself the time to write, I have the energy to love a lot of other things.
For more than two years, and exactly 200 posts, I’ve given myself that time right here, at Mamas Always Write. 100 posts ago, I was almost giddy with achievement and expectation. Today I’m much more comfortable in my skin. I no longer harbor secret hopes that this blog will make me famous or get me a book contract, but the work I’ve done here has helped me forge a writing career. Yes, that’s right. Right now I have three – THREE – proper writing gigs, in which I exchange words for money or goods.
It’s pouring rain this morning, and there’s something pretty amazing about all the gray.
Thanks for reading along.