I almost recycled material tonight. It’s not that I was uninspired to do the work today, but in my travels of the day (nothing glamourous and I wish that those travels included an elephant or camel or private jet – some worthy conjuring of the word ‘travels’) I saw a pair of earrings that reminded me of a pair that I once had. A pair that was (deep intake of breath) stolen from me.
So while I kicked around all the experiences of today; gut wrenchingly watching as Little Sister barely peeled herself out of the car and cried on her way in to school, beaming with pride as I watched her big sister comfort her and pull her into a side hug as she encouraged her to keep walking in, a low sodium basting find used at dinner, magic tricks eagerly executed before they were perfected after dinner by Big Sister, to name a few… I didn’t worry about what I would write. I would write about the earrings. Then, eureka! I remembered that I had ALREADY written about the earrings!
A few years ago, I bought a book of writing prompts called “642 things to write about” by The San Franciso Writers’ Grotto (which I highly recommend as a way to practice ideas that you might not self-generate, also, this is not a sponsored post – in case you thought I was super famous and being courted to plug products). One of the many awesome prompts included the direction to write about “Something you had that was stolen”. In it, I recalled a jewelry box that I had that was taken when our house was broken into. That box held the earrings, among other precious things. I loved this essay as it meant so much to me and thought it would be perfect to write a little disclaiming blurb for the blog tonight explaining that it was original work and I was recycling it because I was reminded of it today.
I could almost hear the theme song to Jeopardy! playing in my head. I would knock out the blog and still have time for final Jeopardy. I was efficient! I was sly! I was in need of ethical guidance. So I turned to the authority on the subject, my husband, who is the most ethical person I have ever encountered. Explaining myself and illustrating how, again, it was still original work and my goal was to write every day for a year and I was still technically writing and it was still technically something I had written (do you hear how hard I am trying to argue my case? I know, yuck.). The lights were off so I couldn’t see his face as he took in the hard sell.
But his reply was the one I needed and the one I knew I would get from him. “It’s not a question of ethics, but if you have to ask…” I couldn’t tell you what he said after “ask” because I left. I could have left after he started with “it’s”. I left not because I was miffed, but because I had my article. There is a lot of talk about soul mates. I have a soul mirror. Though it is an almost certain death sentence for an ego, I couldn’t be more eternally grateful for him.
The situation with Little Sister kills me. That she doesn’t joyfully skip off to school is still befuddling. It pains me to see my kids unhappy, but the joy of seeing them overcome is unparalleled. I need to build her up in a way that she can stand tall. I need to do the same thing with myself. Trying to wriggle out of writing by labeling it posting and calling it a success wouldn’t have sat well with me and I know that.
I will go to bed later tonight, but I will believe in myself just a little bit more. I hope that we are all this lucky, to have someone who loves you enough to let you grow. I wish for us all, a person who is there to support us and cheer us on while we find our footing, reminding us that we have a harness but that we will have to climb on our own.
What started with sadness and longing over something that was taken from me turned into illuminating what has grown and strengthened with the years, as I hope my abilities do too. To the girl wearing oval shaped peridot earrings with a yellow gold pronged setting – you took me back in time and it broke my heart all over again. Fear not, though gentle reader, I have a steady soul mirror in my corner to keep me company as I put it back together once more.