After getting slammed with a particularly atrocious cold in November, I quit writing and watched lots of Star Trek reruns and played way too much Uno. While I'm finally feeling better, I still don't want to pick up the quill. Not until January, anyway. Truthfully, I've lost the motivation to write even more word. I need a break. Fallow ground to germinate new ideas.
My mother passed away in 2008, but I will always treasure the emails she sent me while I was at college, and her constant encouragement to pursue my stories:
"Don't be afraid of what lies ahead. Just love your dreams, and go for them. See what happens. You'll always regret it if you don't."
"Take care, and follow your dreams. They are the best part of you."
"Just remember that I love you to pieces, and I believe in you totally and completely."
"If I could I would take every pain and trial from you, but then you could not grow, and I cannot do it anyway."
Despite these wonderful words, I must confess that for the past few months I have felt terrified that I had nothing left inside me worth saying. That all my stories are irrelevant, especially in a world with so much sadness on a global scale, from climate change, struggling economies, wars, and mass migrations of refugees. What could I possibly say in the face of all this sorrow that matters?
I don't know yet. But I do believe there is a difference between fallow ground and wallowing grounds. I refuse to give into useless self-pitying. I want to open my mind and heart to the goodness of the universe and learn how to better share it. As the poet Sara Teasdale said in her poem "Night," "Look for a lovely thing and you will find it, / It is not far--/It never will be far."