February Chills & Parenting Thrills
This time of year is heartbreakingly beautiful in Alaska.
Why heartbreaking? Because spring is not yet around the corner. We have to get through at least two more months before the weather really turns warm. (And what I mean by that is that the daily temperatures might average above freezing for the month.)
So while it's gorgeous (true story. Check out my IG account for some Alaska photos), it's also maddening.
What is a gal to do during these chilly months?
Well. Right now, my life consists of attempting to write on my phone via Scrivener for iOS while holding a two-month-old and negotiating with a three-year-old.
I'm also attempting to eat healthy and get back into shape after pregnancy and child birth. (Easier said than done. Especially when coupled with a newborn with food allergies.)
I also have to keep the soon-to-be-four-year-old happy, teach him to read, to be kind, and to deal with his other emotions and disappointments of this world.
Then there's maintaining a relationship with my husband. And dealing with illnesses and feeding people and animals, keeping up with housework... Oh, the list seems endless.
There's also the writing. Er...did I say writing?
Most of my writing brain these days is focused on several projects. What I'm currently working on is this: edits for “The Salt of the Earth,” which is a retelling of “The Dirty Shepherdess” fairy tale, and crafting a series loosely inspired by “Snow White,” “Sleeping Beauty,” “Cinderella,” and another yet to be decided fairy tale. Yes, I'm a bit fairy tale obsessed these days.
(But forgive me for being a little excited about fairy tales--my most recent retelling, Three Nights, a retelling of "The Twelve Dancing Princesses," just came out on the 26th! It's in Of Legend and Lore, an anthology with ten--I think--other talented authors.)
But I'm also working on edits for my women's fiction novel, “Broken Time”--Which has absolutely no mention of fairy tales at all.
Yes, I am a bit busy these days...
And, to be honest, a bit conflicted these days.
We're all human. It's a matter of how we spend our time that makes us who we are.
Life is a constant balance of choices. What do I do with my spare five (or thirty) minutes, after (most) of my other responsibilities are met?
You might knit, might watch TV, might call a friend.
But this unleashes my own insecurities.
There are writers much busier than me who accomplish much more than me. And that tempts me into playing the comparison game. It's so easy to do, isn't it?
I refuse to compare myself to others.
Instead, I've been focusing on getting out of the house and enjoying my children while they still love me and aren't ashamed of me. Well at least embarrassed by me. Yet, I admit: I've been so busy that work has actually felt like work.
These days I'm trying to take it slow and realize that there are seasons in life for a reason. Work will always be there, but my kids won't be. They'll grow up and move out, and I will be left in my own little writing world.
Hopefully I'll have my own writing cottage by then...
Something like this:
Or even this...
...where I will be nothing but productive and focused...
But I digress.
Right now, I'm right where I need to be: meeting the needs of these little humans in my life.
It's certainly not easy. It's daily a challenge I don't feel prepared for.
Like a test I didn't have time to study for, I'm constantly trying to think of what I read on this subject or that, keep kids from crying, and scribble down a few words when I can.
And all of this inevitably results in a meltdown right at the most inopportune time. (Sometimes my own meltdown.)
But I'm a firm believer that God allows us to be broken to bring us closer to Him. And parenthood is a fantastic way to be broken. And I mean humbled, foot-in-mouth, pie-in-face brokenness.
Nothing shows you your own flaws like your children.
They're sweet, terrible, and brutally honest little images of our own sinful natures. And we love them in spite of it. Just as we love ourselves in spite of our own problems.
We love them even though they're pretty selfish little beings--just like us.
I suppose that's been on my mind lately. And since this is a more personal blog, I had to share it.
Brokenness is never enjoyable. It's humbling, it's infuriating, it's vulnerable.
I’ve had a lot of things on my mind lately. (What mother of young children doesn't?) Amongst them is always my writing projects.
Which I currently don't feel like I have time for. But I plug away and continue to work, even though it's slow progress. Because it is my calling. It's a calling I've felt since fifth grade, and I cannot turn my back on it.
I'm not just a woman, wife, mother, sister, daughter, and warrior of God. I'm a writer. Broken and imperfect as I am, I am a writer. And so I write.
My life lately. 😍