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Thursday, October 27, 2011

Wet Jeans & Sandy Feet

"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again." Daphne Du Maurier's "Rebecca."

Longing. Heart-breaking, gut-wrenching longing. I remember that feeling.

Mine was not of a homestead or family estate. It was of the ocean. Salty air, sand between my toes, and the high-pitched screeching of sea birds. It was of the thunderous roar of the waves crashing and spitting up upon the shore the remains of beautiful shelled creatures, whose armor was of no consequence to the awesome power of the deep.

It was of long walks filled with inspiring sights and peace-inducing breezes.

Today, I had those experiences, once again. In the midst of all of life's challenges and trying situations, I was able to decompress for a while and once again, appreciate the miracles of the moment.

I don't know if I coined the phrase, "returning to self," as I've used it on a number of occasions in my journey of a writer's life. But, today, I did. I truly feel as though I've reconnected to my self in a way that I've not felt possible in some time.

It may have to do with heading out early in the morning to watch the schools of dolphin swim by and frolic in the waves. Or observing the hawks dive into the surf and come up with a catch. Or, seeing the surfers wait patiently for the right moment to catch the wave. So many beautiful moments that serve to refresh and re-energize me in the midst of chaos and unnerving transition.

Things just don't seem to take their toll on me as much since I've returned home. I feel more resilient.

I have my moments. But, they are fewer and farther in between.

I suppose I needed this transition to get me to the place that I long to be in my writing. Baby steps, once again.

I meet my muse there at the ocean's edge. I hear her most clearly when I take the time to walk to the sand and let my vulnerability call to her. I say "vulnerability" because I'm never so alone and raw as when I go there. No make-up, no power-dressing, no masks. I'm just "me." It's so freeing. I let others walk passed and see me for who I really am. They are "raw" and real as well.

It's so refreshing. No one is there to out shine another. They're all just doing their thing, and thinking their thoughts, and processing their lives in a very simplistic way. No judgement, no competition, just living the "Salt Life."

I suppose that's why hikers hike, and bikers bike, and sailors sail, etc. It keeps us in awe of something and someone so much greater than ourselves. Nature in it's purest sense keeps us humble and very aware of our "humanness." It washes our soul.

And, it's from the soul with which we write. Pure and unaffected, if we allow it.

I also have a supportive family who believes in what I dream to do. And it is they, my husband, in particular, who has encouraged me to press in and begin to write again. Having others who believe in your talent is a priceless gift. And, I'm so thankful to have those, who when I've nearly thrown in the towel and admitted defeat, come to my rescue at the eleventh hour, and encourage me to push on.

So, here I am, again. And, that's OK. It doesn't matter how many times I try and fail. It's the time that I try and succeed that matters in the long run.

xoxo,

CJ






Sunday, October 23, 2011

I've Come Home

Yes, I know. I'm fully aware that I've basically fallen off the face of the earth for the past nine months. I don't even know where to begin other than to say that my family and I have taken drastic measures to change our life-flow this year.

The truth is that, after 21 years in a certain vocation, my dear hubby and I decided that it was time for him to retire from that profession and move from the frigid tundra of the north-east region, back to southern coastal-living in our beautiful hometown in Florida. We desired to begin a new chapter of our life where we considered to be "home."

It was hectic, scary, daunting, exhausting, and down-right insane, but, we did it.

We are still adapting to all of the changes. Working different jobs, re-acclimating after being away for nine years, but, reveling in the peace that we know we made the right decision, as hard as it was. We loved our life and friends up north. But, we knew we needed a life-change.

Needless to say, during all of this chaos, I've not written a thing... seriously. Not a thing.

That's been one of the hardest issues for me to deal with. Having identified with being a "writer" for so long, and now, not writing at all for almost one year, has wreaked havoc with my mind and creative process.

I've wondered, at times, if I might have forgotten my muse during the move. Maybe she had wandered away during a pit stop in Virginia, or strayed and gotten lost somewhere between point A and point B. I've even thought she may have accidently fallen into a box labeled "Good Will," and was donated to charity before the move.

No, none of that is true. I bumped into her the other day while going through some old books and journals. She has just been patiently waiting for her turn to speak. I've found that she has been graciously sitting behind me as I've struggled to make sense of my new "everything." She hasn't wished to pull on me when I didn't have the time, energy or attention to give her. She's been very understanding. I appreciate that.

So, today while I was at the water's edge, sorting through shells and watching the birds dive into the waves, she walked up beside me and gently whispered in my ear.

"It's time," she said.

Deeply, I breathed in the cool salty air, and whispered back, "I know."

It's not going to be the same as before. I'm not actually sure what it all will look like as far as this blog is concerned. I'm just starting over, again. I'm learning to be a writer, again. I'm on a journey, again. And, that's fine with me. I'm just blessed to be in the process, and to share with whomever is interested.

Simply stated, I'm home... in more ways than one.




Shoe Mood:
Home is where shoes aren't required! ;-)

Must Reads

  • "A Long Fatal Love Chase" by Louisa May Alcott
  • "Gone With the Wind" by Margaret Mitchell
  • "I Capture the Castle" by Dodie Smith
  • "Les Miserables" by Victor Hugo
  • "Rebecca" by Daphne Du Maurier
  • "The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing" by M.T. Anderson
  • "The Grace Awakening" by Charles Swindoll