Written November 3, 2015
I’m not sure dreams ever truly die. Sure, they get pushed aside for a time, or morphed into something bigger, or coaxed along slowly and carefully over days turned years, but they still exist. They’re still alive. Maybe they sit patiently for a time, waiting for us to realize they were stifled but not silenced, muffled but not inaudible. And then, in a crescendo of strung together moments, they reenter the part of our souls that nudges the hardest and we can’t ignore them any longer. We can’t not do it.
I have felt this prodding here and there since high school, maybe earlier, to put words on paper. But I thrive within boundaries. I need order and rules and without a prompt or an assignment or a purpose, I have struggled to even begin. I do not see myself as “a creative”, which certainly fans the flames of self-doubt.
If I am not artsy and definitely do not exude any sort of hippie-type, go-with-the-flow aura, how could I ever engage in such an organic process? My lack of creativity, coupled with my fears – of not having anything worth saying, of not being capable of writing without guidelines, of not being well-read enough, of not knowing the nuances of grammar as well as some – have paralyzed me. And, until the last few weeks, I mistook crippling fear for a dead dream.
Now, more than ever before, fresh in the throes of new mommyhood, my lack of soul care has never been more evident. I have never been very dedicated to personal refreshment. Cognitively, I know investing in myself reaps great benefits, both to me and to those around me. But practically speaking, heaps of guilt well up inside at the mere thought of focusing any amount of time or energy on myself. I immediately feel lazy and selfish.
I don’t believe it is a coincidence that articles and comments and books and social media posts fleshing out the topics of both self care, soul care and nurturing one’s gift of writing have been grabbing my attention lately. These gentle soul-nudges have turned to sharp jabs and the whispers to shouts: Write!
So, here I am, hesitantly putting pen to paper. I recently listened to a podcast episode featuring the beloved author Sally Lloyd Jones. In the course of the interview, she said something to the affect of “part of stewardship is nurturing our gifts.” So, I suppose these are scribbles of stewardship.