I’m going for the record on starting blog posts with, “So, I haven’t blogged in a while…”
And it’s true. I haven’t. Why? Good question. Oh. You want the honest to God truth, huh?
Because I haven’t felt like I have anything to say.
Nothing you haven’t heard before at least. And let’s face it, whining about this, that and the other just gets old after a bit, doesn’t it? Not that I ever set out to whine or moan. Sometimes it just seems, to me anyway, that’s how a lot of my thoughts come across. Fractured, to say the least. Because I think, for a long time, I was broken.
There’s probably a story there. But you know, I’m not sure I want to tell it. Not today.
I’m in a new season now. And I have things to say. I do.
It took me a while to figure that out. I hemmed and hawed over this darn blog, wondering if the words were worth it. If anyone was reading and what did it matter if they were or they weren’t … I have no control over that. Just like I’ll have no control over who reads my new book when it comes out in July. Or who doesn’t. But it’ll still be my book. With a cover and a title. Oh, did I tell you that? The Things We Knew. Cool, right? But I don’t want to talk about that today either. I want to tell you about my latest revelation.
Finally, after I sat for days just staring at this stupid empty Word Press box and cursing it multiple times, I read a bunch of books. Fiction, and the self-help stuff I can’t seem to get enough of. I spent too much time on Facebook, I completed first round edits and sent them in, spent more time on Facebook (yes, I know. It’s just a teensy problem…), and I laughed quite a bit. Some of the stuff that people put out there … well, you know. What else can you do but laugh?
Yet I couldn’t sit here and write this blog. Couldn’t figure out why. And finally I asked myself why I write at all. Not just this blog, but in general. Of course I do it for the fun of it, because let’s face it, sitting around all day chatting with imaginary characters and drinking copious cups of coffee … that’s fun, really … but why? What is it that drives me to get the words down, to reorder them until I’m finally satisfied with the sound? Why do I pour my heart and soul out into stories for strangers to read? Which led to a dozen other soul-searching questions, which all barreled into this one.
What is it that I am passionate about?
Yes, I am passionate about many things. Beautiful sunsets. Smiles. Dogs. Books. Roses. Minions. So many things. But really, truly, deep down? Here’s what I want.
For people to find their place.
That’s it. That’s the one thing. And I don’t mean it like ‘know your place as in, sit down and shut up’, I mean it as ‘find your place’ – where is home for you? What is home? Who is home? Your tribe, your peeps … who’s got your back? Who’s seeking you out, wanting to hear from you, because they believe in what you have to say? Where is your place?
I think I’ve struggled so long with this because I was actually afraid I didn’t have one. Didn’t fit in. Didn’t really have a voice. Age old records play that tune, and sometimes they’re impossible to shut off. It’s hard to believe you can succeed at anything if you don’t believe in yourself. Even when I was told otherwise, even with actual written proof staring me in the face, I don’t think I quite believed it.
Even standing in a room full of amazing authors and agents and editors, being told, yes, this is your place, I wanted to shake my head. This is Scary Town, people. Because what if … God forbid … what if I fail? Yes, that’s always the risk, isn’t it? And I know now that I’m not crazy, because most everybody feels that way. Which is why you need to know your place. Because once you know that, once you embrace that, it doesn’t matter who throws what at you. You’ll always belong. Your people will love you anyway, whether you’re a great smashing success or not.
November is National Adoption Awareness Month. It’s a thing. Look it up.
As an adoptee, I’m all for adoption awareness. Part of the reason I took so long to find my place, I believe, is because I never knew where I came from. Once the pieces of that puzzle started to snap together, I could get to work on completing the rest of it. Because it’s important to know who you are. And to know where you’ve been. Once you figure that out, you’ve got a much better chance of figuring out where you’re going.
Find your place.
My place is here, being a writer, using my words, telling stories that make a difference, using whatever talent God has graced me with to the best of my abilities, and trusting HIm for the rest. And not being ashamed of what I say, write or do. Because now that I know my place, my people, my passion, I’m learning how to say no to guilt and shame and feelings of inadequacy. There’s no room at the table for them.
After half a century on this planet, I think I’ve earned the right to say this is a no BS zone. So yes, I have a place. YES I HAVE A PLACE!! WOOHOO!! But it’s not always comfortable. Doubt still creeps up and tries to push me out of that chair. But I’m breaking it in. And with every day that passes, I’m loving it just a little bit more.
So maybe we can talk about stuff like that here, together. About finding our places and our voices and where we fit in. Where we belong and why.
Because everybody’s got a story.
I’d love to hear yours.