Lately, my life has been very chaotic. And while chaos is pretty much my norm, it’s rare for me to go for months at a time with no lulls. Lulls are important. They are the oases by which I chart my course, because I know that in the lull, I’ll finally be able to breathe. Lulls allow me to think and plan my next move, and sometimes, they even give me time to process.
You can’t wait for lulls, though. Life will never stop throwing things your way, and that is the guiding principle of my own life. Dealing with constant chaos has made me into something of a scrapper, and I’m almost always prepared. Even when I’m not, and resources are low, and things look incredibly bad, there is one thing I know:
I can make it.
This wasn’t always something I was dead sure of. I spent my teens and the first half of my twenties doubting whether I’d make it. There were good reasons for that–I was still trying to finish a degree and move out, all while dealing with the nasty reality that I’d lose my mom. She’d been sick for a long time, and every time I thought things couldn’t get worse, they did. What I recited to myself back then became my mantra, and now, I’m solid in that belief, because I’ve made it come true more times than I can count.
These days, I have a good life. I have a house, a loving husband, and the world’s sweetest and surliest cats. My mom got better, and my family did, too. I have an awesome support network, three amazing best friends, and great critique partners. I’ve completed one book, I’m working on a second, and I won’t stop pushing toward publication because I know eventually I will make my way there.
None of that would have happened if I stopped believing I could make it. I had my moments, to be sure–it’s not easy to handle someone you love being very, very sick, and for many years, I was certain I would lose my mom. It seemed inevitable, but there was always the thought in the back of my mind that at any moment, things could change.
And they did. They changed for the better in some ways, and worse in others. You never know until you’re in the lull and can check yourself for scrapes. In the lull, you find what stayed with you when the wave hit, and you discover you’ve lost.
Right now, I am still searching for the lull. One major event has hit me after another since roughly June, and I’m hoping the lull will find me soon. We’ve weathered the worst so far, and things have been slowly improving, so I’m hoping for a peaceful, quiet October. It is my favorite month of the year, and it’s when I tend to be most productive in terms of writing. There’s something about the turning leaves and the crisp air, the way the sunlight turns everything gold and amber in the afternoons. October is when I do my very best writing, and if I had it my way, that’s where I’d stay year-round. But time doesn’t work that way, and neither do lulls. I just have to keep going.
The plan for October is to power through the newest draft of THE WILD HUNT. I got stuck in the last one, and it troubled me quite a bit until my critique partners dismantled the problem. It took someone who knew both me and the story inside and out to find the problem, and another to help me figure out how to deal with it. Between the two of them, I finally got a handle of my book, and now all that’s left is to write it.
All I have to do is believe in what I already know.
I can make it.
I can finish the book. I can weather the chaos currently wreaking havoc, and I can also enjoy my favorite month of the year. I will keep my chin up, and I’ll keep at it, because no matter how chaotic things become, they can always change for the better.
And for now, that’s what I’ll believe until it happens.