“Living involves tearing up one rough draft after another.” Unknown
As I’ve sifted through the journals of the last several years of my life — both the years I fought infertility and the years since I became a mother of twin girls — I’ve learned some startling things about myself. I’ve had to throw out a few rough drafts of who I thought I was at the time. They were good. I liked them. They worked at the time. Some may even work again some day. Who knows?
But, they no longer work. Projects I thought were great then are no longer.
I’ve known for a while that I have seasons of creativity — seasons when I produce more, seasons when I produce less, seasons when I dream more, seasons when I dream less. All of these seasons, no matter the outcome, led me to the same themes, themes I have often ignored.
I have always put practical before the dreams, which is why so many drafts have been tossed out. They never felt right. They never felt authentic. They never ignited a true spark that I could stick with and sustain.
I struggle very much with sustainability. I get fired up about an idea and then, later, it fizzles or I fizzle or we all fizzle and then I’m left wondering how I got into this mess and, more importantly, how the hell can I get out now that I have no fire burning inside of me for it.
But going through these journals has elevated the fact that I am on the right path, finally. The same amazing themes have popped up over and over and over in my writings.
I’m OK now that I’ve had a few — OK, several — rough drafts of myself over the years. In fact, there has been too many to count. It will be easy for me to lead my daughters down a path of authenticity — to live a life that they measure for themselves — knowing that we never know what we’re going to be in life. Enjoy the ride. Go with the flow. Let your passions lead you, let your heart lead you and then let your brain bring you back, reel you back in and help you find that balance of what is right, what works, what doesn’t and where you should go next.
The doors open all the time. Some of us know how to notice that, others do not. Not every door is the right door but they all certainly lead us on the right journey — our journey.
I’d like to think that now, just a couple years shy of turning 40, now as an experienced mother, now as a true creative soul who has embraced Living as Art that I may not need to throw out any more drafts. I’d like to keep this draft. I may tweak it a bit. I may change a few things around. I may even toss out a few big paragraphs that I thought were really good. But I like myself more now than ever.
For the first time, I respect myself and who I’ve become. It’s pretty radical, really, to be here in this place of such self-love.
And, I’m OK with throwing it all out to the wind if I must. I”ll just be really surprised because I’m awesomely awake now and I just get myself. I hold no more apologies of who I am. I not only know my values but I trust them as my guiding force.
The draft was always mine to keep and tweak. The story was always mine to plot.
The ending is mine as well.