I have always used writing as a therapeutic tool. Even with ebbs and flows, I have always found putting pen to paper usually revealed something more than I was ever thinking. At some point after having my boys, I decided to write children’s books. I mean, how hard can that be? Uh…..it was hard. While your intended audience are kids, the people buying them are adults, so essentially you are writing for two demographics. So, with a pile of rejection letters, I was ready to surrender.
My mother has always been a staunch supporter for whatever her girls were interested in doing. Writing was one of those things. In fact, she is the reason why my career as a freelancer has been so successful. One day, she told me about a local program that would allow me to get a master’s in writing. It was a two year program in a brief-residency setting, so I wouldn’t have to sacrifice time with the boys. I applied with hesitation. I say that because I have never been overly confident in my skills and this program was going to be run by a well-known writer, so the intimidation factor was high. To my surprise and horror, I was accepted.
When I listen, sometimes it changes the course of my life. Imagine if I had simply not heard my mother or allowed fear to dictate my decision. I certainly wouldn’t have had ten years at a major publication with my own column or be hired for other magazines. I would still be trying to write children’s books or maybe, I wouldn’t be writing at all.
Sometimes the messenger is an unlikely source. I have to remember that God has this plan and it is my job to listen to the messengers. Pay attention to the signs. Take the risks. Obstacles are simply a detour toward the right direction.