This is a throwback post from February 7, 2020 on Momsieblog. I thought it made a lot of sense to re-publish today. I received a few snarky comments lately on social media and I have to admit, they stung.
But we creatives? We just keep on creating. The snarky audience might always be there (oh why are there so many folks out there who seem to really love tearing other folks down?), but so is your God-given talent. I wonder which one is more important?
Things At Which I am Talented:
- Making sure prepositions don’t go at the end of sentences
- Writing really wonky sentences
- Understanding addiction
- Understanding relapse
- Understanding my own story is wonky but it’s the best one I’ve got
- Reading reviews that weren’t thrilled with my books and then obsessing
- Reading over my own writing and then thinking, “Hey, this is not that bad. Back off, people. Jeez.”
- Writing really really badly some of the time
- Writing some good stuff, some of the time
- Figuring out how to finally turn off the humidifier in our living room which refused to turn off after I pushed the Power button like fifteen times and it would NOT, I SWEAR turn off and decided it was kind of possessed but then I just googled it because isn’t that what everyone does now and I get it and feel a tiny private moment of triumph each and every time I turn off something and hey, I take triumph where I can get it.
- Run on sentences.
- Repeating my children’s names so often that it ends up sounding like I’m a rapper and therefore so very cool. Sorta.
- Pointedly ignoring parenting articles that tell you not to repeat your children’s names endlessly because it supposedly trains them to ignore and then you have horrible children. Pfft. My rapper name is Biggie Sighs, btw.
- Having faith in my parenting. It’s terrifically wonky and it’s all I have.
- Having faith in my God because without him all of it is wonky. All. Of. It.
- Having very little faith in anything else. SURRENDER, DOROTHY.
- Leftover night.
- Collecting boxes and then tossing them down in the basement where crickets go to die. I have a thing for boxes. Every time we get an amazon delivery, I caress the box and think, “Oooo. What a nice box. I should keep it,” and then down it goes. And now our basement looks like one of those hoarders episodes. But only the basement, so it’s ok. You never know when you’re gonna need a nice box.
- Just plugging along. Acting as if. Doing the next right thing. All of that business.
Recently, I made the silly mistake of reading negative reviews. I have written two books, and that in itself is a miracle. A straight-up gift from God. But sometimes… I like to torture myself and try to make all the people like me all of the time.
Also this: Did you know, snarky review writers, that there is a HUMAN behind the book that you didn’t like? Did you know that?
Sometimes my writing is solid. Sometimes it’s not. And that just really makes me nuts. I write about my own life, so when people don’t like it? It’s tough. It’s like standing in front of a crowd and having some people point and shrug. “Meh,” they say. “I quit half way through.”
Yep. That was a tough one.
So, this morning, as I was praying in my laundry room (my prayer closet) I came to this conclusion: My talent (or lack thereof) is not my own. It started out as God’s and then he funneled it my way. Just poured it on me, and said, “Go write about getting sober and see if you can help.” And, like so many things about faith and following, sometimes I grip onto it and say, “Mine.“
Not mine. Not perfect. Not for everyone. Not easy. And not ever enough.
Talent is tough.
But so am I.