A few years ago, I stumbled across a blog that I fell in love with. I liked her writing style and her story. I’ve commented occasionally on her blog over the years and we’ve exchanged a few e-mails.
I was ecstatic for her when her dream of becoming a novelist came true. Of course, there was a twinge of envy, but she is talented and hardworking and very deserving.
After reading her first novel, I sent her an e-mail letting her know that I enjoyed it. I gave her a bit of my backstory, as well.
She thanked me and wished me luck in my endeavors. She surprised me, though, when she said, “Enjoy this time while your kids are young. I always wanted to be a writer, but I’m glad that I shared that time with them first. Your time will come!!”
I appreciated her kindness and her genuine hope for my future success. But the latter part of her e-mail left me a bit disgruntled. “Who does she think she is? Why can’t I be a writer and be there for my kids?”
As it turns out, though, she was right.
When I started Life Happens When, I wanted to use my words to inspire others to embrace the journey of life. I’d be lying if I said that was all it was for, though. Any publicity gained would be welcome and would help me make my writing dream(s) come true.
What has surprised me is that I have gained some publicity. My posts may not have gone viral. I might not get hundreds of comments a day. But I’ve been exposed. I’ve gained readership. I’ve gained dare I say followers.
While this is weird and surreal, it is also a HUGE step towards my dreams.
I love this corner of the internet. I love the way it has challenged me. I’ve discovered myself over and over again as a writer. I’m encouraging myself alongside my readers.
It is hard work, though, and it has taken a huge toll on me.
I was driving down the road the other day and I know I heard the voice of God. I have trouble deciphering His voice among the crowd sometimes, but this time, it was clear.
Wanna know what He told me?
He said, “Leanne, it’s not time.”
I thought about it for a minute. I let the words settle in. I pondered what exactly He meant by it. Instantly, I recalled the words I had shrugged off from that e-mail.
Suddenly, her voice, God’s voice, and other voices of reason began swirling around in my head:
“Enjoy your kids.”
“Live your life.”
“Write for fun.”
“Stop putting so much pressure on yourself.”
“You don’t have to be Superwoman!”
“Your time will come.”
“It’s not time.”
For a brief moment, I considered my own insecurity. I considered the devil sneaking in to destroy my self esteem and my dreams.
But I heard it again and I knew.
It’s not time.
This does not mean I will never publish a book. This does not mean that my dream of being a “real” writer is lost.
This means that though there are STILL stories and advice and words to be written, there is more to my life (especially right now).
There are kids to take care of. Walks to go on. Zoos and parks and libraries and Chick-fil-A’s to enjoy. Bubbles to be blown. Boo boos to kiss. Cuddles and snuggles. Adventures.
Exercise. Time to myself. Chats with friends.
Dates with my husband.
Laughs to be had.
Life to be LIVED.
Computers to be shut down. Facebook to be ignored. Blog posts to leave unpublished.
While this message from God was pretty unexpected and felt like being slapped in the face, it was much needed. I am a writer, yes, but I am more.
It is so easy to get wrapped up in things that we are passionate about. We get swept away by the idea of something and soon it takes over our life.
Sometimes we need to step back and remember that our life is composed of many parts. We must give our best effort to our most important priorities and responsibilities. When we feel like we’re being pulled in a million different directions, that’s usually a sure sign that we’re neglecting something important.
Perhaps it’s time for you to give something up? Or take a break? Or just slow down? Not for forever. Just for right now.
It’s not time. Not yet.
Life happens when we wait our turn!
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