“Writing is a way to escape from the hard realities of life,” my stylist said as she lifted a long strand of my hair and snipped. “Really, when I write, I feel like I’m getting a break.”
“I can completely relate.” I held my head still even though I wanted to jump up and down and nod in agreement.
“My husband just doesn’t get it.” Her fingers and the scissors danced around my head. “But after working full time and taking care of the kids, I need something to take my mind off everything else. My writing and reading do that.”
“I hear you. I need something else to focus on too—besides my kids and homeschooling.” My hair-standing-on-end, wet-dog reflection in the mirror stared back at me. “When we’re busy and life is crazy, writing is really—well, like a gift. Isn’t it?”
That conversation with my stylist is similar to ones I’ve had with other friends over the past year. Maybe not all my friends are writers, like my stylist or me. But many of us are struggling with the same issues—being busy and trying to balance our time. The pressures and demands of our hectic lives begin to take their toll on us.
What I’ve realized is that writing really is a gift. At this point in my life, when I’m busy with the demands of mothering and teaching and running a house, my stories give me a change of place, something else to focus on for a little while besides the everyday craziness around me.
Sure, I still look at my writing as a job, something I take seriously. But it’s also a pleasure and an enjoyment that adds refreshment, creativity, and joy to my life.
Don’t we all need something like that in our lives, something out of the ordinary that takes us away from the mundane tediousness of everyday life?
Maybe it’s gardening, or playing the piano, or running, or reading, or any number of activities. Whatever it is, if it makes us a healthier, better person, then we should embrace it, see it as a gift, something special to treasure.
One of my favorite songs is titled “Blink” by a pop band called Revive. I love the way the song reminds us that life happens in a blink. Here are some of the words:
“Teach me to number my days and count every moment, before it slips away;
Take in all the colors before they fade to gray;
I don’t want to miss even just a second more of this . . .
It happens in blink, it happens in a flash, it happens in the time it takes to look back.
I try to hold on tight, but there’s no stopping time, what is it I’ve done with my life?
It happens in a blink. It happens in a blink.”
Here’s a poignant video of the song along with the lyrics (video credit to Bob Marshall). You’re welcome to watch it if you have the time!
Life is short. It really does happen in a blink.
I don’t want to get so caught up in the crazy pace that I forget to savor the pure joys of living—the shared laughs with my twin daughters, the butterfly kisses with my princess, the whispered dreams of my little guy, and so much more.
And my writing. For all the hardships that accompany the writing life, I don’t want to forget it really is all about the pleasure of weaving stories.
What about you? Are you savoring life? What GIFT (writing or otherwise) do you have that helps put joy into your life?