CLEARLY the Lord is working on something within me, because I’m still struggling with my writing. For weeks (months?) I felt like maybe it just wasn’t “in the cards” for me to continue as a writer. Maybe the season is over for me? Then, after journaling during nap time, I took on a new perspective: perhaps it’s just the devil trying to get inside my head and steer me away from my gifts. Maybe? I asked God to make it loud and clear what is going on, because nothing else makes sense.
Within other areas of my life: food, sleep, relationships, and time spent caring for myself, I feel totally healthy. I have no trouble sharing with others how I’m feeling, from the little details to more substantial topics.
So, what’s going on with my writing?
Friends, I truly feel like I’m in a writing drought! “Drought” isn’t the right word — I feel like something is standing in my way. Like a literal block. I’m not giving up (I really enjoy writing), and it’s not that I don’t know what to write about (I have lots to share). When I sit down to write, either nothing comes out or my mind goes blank. I can see my thoughts, but they are fuzzy and out of reach.
My choice to minimize where I spend my time online has helped in a big way, so I know it’s not that.
I need to switch gears…
One of my priorities for this year is to cook new recipes, and ohhhh goodness, I’ve been making so many different soups. (Edie has taught me so much.) Making soup is so fun! I love pulling an armful of ingredients out of the fridge, warming up my dutch oven, and cooking dinner as my tribe plays around me. Usually I have Marigold near me in her high chair, Natalie is coloring with markers or crayons, and Max is building with LEGOs. But also usually, Max loves (lives?) to chase Natalie. He usually has on a t-shirt and underpants; she’s wearing leggings and a sweatshirt. Both are barefoot. Her pink “baby” is tucked under her arm, and she’s hollering at him to stop. I love watching their personalities emerge.
Soon after the chase begins, Bauer briskly walks to our bedroom to hide from the kids. He’s smart. After a few minutes, someone gets distracted, and the chasing stops naturally. (Whew.) I fill my water glass one more time, chop the vegetables, add some broth and meat or soaked bean, then I sprinkle in a few spices. I get out the bowls, set out a tub of shaved Parmesan, and ask Max to help me set the table. It’s a wonderful mix of chaos while I create in the kitchen, and it’s our routine.
I think it’s normal to have waves of doubt with the things we feel called to do, with the activities we enjoy doing, but what I’m feeling with my writers block is really starting to discourage me. I enjoy writing, and I miss not to being able to write. I’m nearly miserable.
Yesterday, a new notebook arrived in the mail. Beginning tonight, I’m gathering with a group of women from my church, and we’ll be meeting weekly. Maybe this will spur on some sort of writing revival for me?
Praying for a “yes”!
PS. my tassel/wooden necklace is by The Jones Market. It was a surprise gift from Zack this past Christmas, and my absolute favorite accessory!
I loved this post. You haven’t lost your writing skillz… they came out strong today. I smiled picturing Max and Nony running through the halls. Just love you. Don’t stop writing. Just keep pushing through. Your mojo will come back stronger than ever!
Thanks for the encouragement — it sure means a lot :)
I agree with Rebecca – Your writing was fantastic in this post.
Maggs, you’re so good, and I’m proud of you for talking through the struggle. Let’s keep the conversation going.
I love you
You know I won’t turn down an opportunity to talk ;D thanks for being such a great encourager, I really value it.
I said a prayer for you just now. You do have a gift, and your writing encourages many. I pray that as freely as the ideas come to you, they would flow when you sit down to get them out. In the meantime, you’re letting your natural creativity come out in your cooking and appreciating the small moments with your babies. Keep shining! The words will come. xoxo
Thank you, Jenny — for your prayers and kind words! xx
Check out the book THE WAR OF ART. it’s an easy read. Also my husband loves MAKING IDEAS HAPPEN.
Hi Tara! Thanks for the book recommendation! xx
Wow. I feel bad that you feel miserable. I understand what you’re saying. When you journal are you able to just write without holding back? Do you ever force yourself to do that?
Hi dear! Sometimes I can do that? Other times I feel like I’m writing the same thing (about my frustrations). Maybe I need to follow some prompts and push through with those? Instead of just freestyle writing… Hmmm, you’re giving me something to think about… :)
I was once told by my English teacher to keep writing even when you feel that you have nothing to write about. Like running or exercises if you stop it’s likely you may never start again. Keep at it girl.
I’ve heard that too, which is equal parts encouraging and terrifying ;D so glad you commented! xx
Just wanted to say hi and hope you are not getting “cabin fever” too bad yet! We’re in WI and up in the thirties for temps this week and it has been SO nice in comparison to the negative zero temps earlier this winter :) Take care!!
Hi Mara! We’ve had pretty warm temps for winter/January — I’m sort of bummed, ha! That also means very little snow. We are on the East side of Michigan, so we don’t get much snow. I bet it’s beautiful where you are. We loved the heavy snowfall Minneapolis received when we lived there. xx
I am a writer on the side and I so understand this. I think this is very normal. Your life is in a very unique season right now… and I think it would make sense to think that your creative/writing mojo is focused on your very young and needy children right now, and when you try to direct it outwards it doesn’t quite flow/feel right? Maybe? In any case, you ARE a fantastic writer, and your personality and honesty shines through with every word. I have no doubt that you will be writing freely again before you know it. Have you read The Artist’s Way? The author recommends a daily routine called Morning Pages – 3 pages of free writing each morning before anything else – this helps access the creative side of our minds. I’ve tried to do this but right now it is very hard to get up before my little crew of early birds. :) Anyway that might be a book for you to check out and an idea to consider! Oh and also – Zack is such a gem. I always smile when I read his comments. He obviously just gets you. :)
I’ve heard of that process, and I’ve tried it a few times. My schedule is all upside down right now, we’re up too late at night but then sleep in. The kids are such good sleepers that we usually wake up when they wake up, which is 7:45am lately. CRAZY! So because of this, I rarely have a moment to sit down and write. I’m hoping to turn off my bedside lamp soon and then get up early to write and read my Bible ;) I definitely need to get back on schedule. Wish me luck! xx
Oh, it’s so frustrating to feel like you have words, but they just won’t come out! I’ve been there before… writing isn’t probably my strong suit… but I often have deep “big idea” thoughts floating around in my head that I just don’t know how to share!
I’ve always been a journaler… may I encourage you; next time you sit down with God… try to listen & write what you feel He is telling you? Write what’s on your heart first… pray, seek Him… then… listen. It’s an amazingly encouraging experience, & I have learned so much from the Holy Spirit as I seek to hear Him & follow him.
Also… your heart & your voice still are shining, even if you don’t feel like they are. :-) Keep trying to write, Maggie! I look forward to your posts!