Sunday, March 2, 2014

Sitting in the Quiet

“But I had reached the point where I no longer gave a s#$%.   The fact that I had no money was not going to make me quit. I didn’t have a family, I didn’t have a home, I didn’t have a future I could count on. None of those was going to make me quit either.
By that point I didn’t even have a dream. That was a good thing. I had given up on the fantasy that there was a brass ring, or a movie deal, or a rave review that was somehow going to change my life. I had found what I did, which was to sit at a keyboard beating my brains out, day after day, no matter what.”
Steven Pressfield 
I read the above quote in an e-mail newsletter from Mr. Pressfield.  There’s more.  He talks of ruined relationships, several failed projects and even thoughts of suicide.    Still he wrote.  So that’s what I’m doing.  And here’s the thing.  I will give all of it up and all I ask is two things:  my house on the beach and the privilege of writing every day.    So right now, though I’m tired I move forward.  I drink my cup of coffee to stay awake (it doesn’t help) and I keep writing.  I tell my Muse how much I love her by sitting here and working.  I sit here in the quiet and write.
I sat in the quiet earlier today.  I went to my first Quaker service.  I won’t go into the history of the Quakers or what they believe at this time.  I will say that they go back to the 1600’s, that there are differing beliefs and sects within the larger group and that they are committed to social justice.  In the service, there was mostly silence.  Two men spoke for about five minutes each, but that was all.  After an hour, it ended.  This was different than anything I’ve ever attended.  I liked the silence.  I was able to hear God.  He told me I could let go of the memories of the unpleasant parts of my past and that I would not lose myself by doing this. 
Letting go of pain, despair or self-pity allows me to be more fully myself.  Just as we’re created to be healthy and not sick, we are created to be free and not chained either physically or emotionally.  This is why I spend time with my Muse.  So I can be as free as possible.  This is why I write.  So I cannot only be free, but so I can be in control of my own destiny if nothing else. 
Hopefully my journey won’t be as arduous as Mr. Pressfield’s. 
Even though I’m falling asleep, I’m taking control of my destiny by finishing this blog.  It may not be a great work of literature, but it’s still my work.   And I’m proud of it.  I sat at the keyboard and got something done.  I’m one step closer to my house on the beach.  I was able to Get Started and Keep Going.