This is my path right now. Hazy at the edges, an unsure future beyond the few feet in front of me, and no concrete idea where it will lead or end.
But from what I can see, it’s beautiful because I am pursuing my dreams and this fills my soul with such peace.
I left behind a full-time job – money, insurance, stability – to pursue a dream I have had for years, writing. Stepping away from the familiar into the complete unknown has been challenging – researching to determine what I need to do and when and pushing my creativity to what I thought were its limits and moving beyond. Proud of myself for what I have done yet scared to death that all of this hard work and these sacrifices will be for nothing, other than to say, “Well, I tried.”
But that’s what we have to do, right?
We have to try.
We have to dig down deep, where our fears lie in the recesses of our heart and tug at them until they break free, confronting them head on. I have a framed quote on my desk which reads:
“Everything you want is on the other side of fear.” – Jack Canfield
To push beyond the fear and go further than I thought possible, to write a novel and see its publication. That is my other side of fear.
I finished writing a chapter yesterday and then typed, “Chapter 26,” thinking I was moving on. But I stopped. Because my gut, my heart, and my mind, all told me this was the last chapter. And for a second, I was filled with an overwhelming sadness. That this process, this story, was coming to an end and that sadness was then replaced with joy. To have accomplished what I set out to, sheer pride. And so I stopped writing, for yesterday anyway.
Today I wrote another 1,000 words and could’ve kept going but I stopped myself again. It’s like I’m eating the most delicious meal or having the grandest evening and I don’t want it to be over, for a number of reasons.
Because it means these characters will no longer be an active part of my life and I’ve come to adore them. They make me giggle with their words and bring tears to my eyes in other moments.
But more than that, because it means its time to let this story see the light, to let others see the landscape of my soul.
And that means letting go.
And listening to both the critics and my heart, to improve the story, to let it grow to its fullest potential, to put it all out there, leaving nothing on the table and then giving the story wings and believing it will soar.
Everything I want is on the other side of fear.
And I am standing on the precipice, a few pages away…