I just realized I've never really written you a letter before. I feel like a dork writing this to myself, but I thought this might help you see things in a different light. I know you need that.
First of all, I wanted to thank you for all the hard work you do as a mom every day. Raising a family is not an easy task. I see you get frustrated when the boys get fussy and the house gets messy. Finding calm in the chaos is not your strength. You raise your voice to the boys and that makes you feel like a failure. Take a deep breath and slow down.
No one is expecting you to be a perfect mom. Some days, the best you can do is to just show up and be there for the kids. And you know what? I think the boys like that. They just love being around you. That's a beautiful thing you got going there, even though it's hard to see it that way when you are in the middle of the day to day chaos.
You cook dinner for your family every night and that really counts. The boys see you working in the kitchen and I think that comforts them. Just like you felt as a little girl when you saw your grandmother cooking in the kitchen.
She walked in the kitchen at 4 o'clock on the dot every day, remember? Every, single, day. She would stare outside of the window for a moment as if trying to figuring out what to cook for dinner, while rubbing her lower back to relieve the pain from standing.
She always prepared meals in silence. So, you stood beside her and just watched. Neither of you really spoke in that kitchen, but the air of comfort took place in there. The kitchen was actually never quiet. The sound of your grandma's chef's knife on her old butcher's block, the gentle sizzling of onions in hot oil, and the bubbling of hot water filled the kitchen. You felt safe there.
You know that was the gift your grandmother gave you. Now you are trying to give your boys the same gift, just because you know that matters. Call your grandmother and tell her how much you love her. Tell her you appreciate everything she's done for you. She taught you the ordinary things you do every day makes who we are. She taught you what it means to be brave by showing up every day without a complaint. She is your hero and role model. Tell her all about that.
And that blog thing you started last month? You are doing a pretty good job so far. I'm not saying you've written something mind-blowing, but you have learned to be accountable. Putting a decent post together takes a lot more time and effort than you thought it would be. It's a good practice for you.
I know you are torn sometimes between spending time with your family and writing a blog post. You also get frustrated not spending enough time on writing stories for children. Don't worry. You'll soon learn to put your priorities straight. Hopefully. You know your family comes first and always stick to that.
The one word inspiration you came up for the new year, "create?" I love it. It's a perfect fit for you. But I also know something unexpected happened that stirred up your soul a great deal. The word "write" came to your mind out of nowhere (well, actually came from within).
When you heard the voice in your head, your first instinct was to run from it, as far and fast as possible. Well, this is not the first time you tried to run from what you were called to do.
When a father of this famous pianist told you that you've got a gift for playing the piano, what did you do? You just shrugged your shoulders and walked away. When you took an drawing class in college, Ms. Barry, the art professor encouraged you to pursue art, what did you do then? After much thinking (over a glass of wine), you decided to pursue your Master's in Human Development. Brilliant.
Looking back, every time you saw a glimpse of your true design, you ran away from it and didn't even know it. This time you are not running from it. You are pursuing it and this is scary.
You struggle to write. Trying to string words together often feels like a chore than a joy. Even having a thought of wanting to be a writer feels like a sin. You have avoided writing in the past twelve years, after all. You cried and complained it wasn't fair, because it rather felt like a curse than a blessing.
You have something simmering inside of you, wanting to come out. Just like a mother bearing her child inside, you have no idea what will come out of you. But you know you need to be a better writer so that you can bring forth what's growing inside. Keep on writing and don't be discouraged. That's the only way to get better at it.
Your urge to write doesn't have to conflict with your passion to create. Perhaps, the one word you really needed for this new year was "becoming." Perhaps you can only become who you are through writing and creating things. We'll figure that out as it goes.
Write for the sake of writing. Create for the sake of creating. Don't craft things so that you can please other people, get attention, or be successful. I hope you find yourself, your unique design, unfolding in the middle of that process.
Your better half.