My youngest daughter, updated her Christmas list - decorated and glittered and hanging on the fridge - the other day. There, at the very bottom and written in pencil so it kind of blended with the red construction paper, she'd written:
"For my daddy to get a job"
Yes, I got all blurry-eyed and felt that Grinch-heart expansion that stole my breath and made me have to hold up the fridge a few minutes. And yes, my biggest want this Christmas season - even with a book on submission - is for my husband to land a job. We'll be fine, we're fortunate I'm working. His going through this has been tough because I can't fix it, can't even attempt to fix it. And he's excellent at what he does and is a hard worker and SO didn't deserve to be caught without a chair when the music stopped. The Mom part of me knows it's life and life's not always fair, just like I've had so many talented writer friends passed up by agents and publishers and reviews. It happens. (Insert boo-hiss here!)
But the re-org which organized him out of a job has been a blessing in disguise. It's made us ask hard questions like:
How do I want to live?
What's most important?
Am I doing what I LOVE?
This same line of questions pack the same punch when you turn them to writing. Especially the last question, in this season on want. Are you writing what you love to read? Are you writing a story you love or writing a story you think you should be writing? It's the details we ignore until we have to which seem to make us grow the most. And like any other type of growing, there are periods where some sort of pain is involved...but in the end, things are better, bigger or even both :D