and now, i breathe.
It's done. The book proposal and sample chapters that I've been working on (at a painstakingly slow pace) over the last six months... it's all done & out of my hands. It's out of my care and control, and in the care and control of my brilliant agent. I was telling a couple of close friends about finally being done with this step... I hit "Send" on the email that had the chapters attached and as soon as it was gone, I yelled at the screen, "No no no! Give it back! They're total CRAP!" I'm probably the best second-guesser you'll ever meet when it comes to writing.
I can't wait to tell you more about the book, but now just isn't the time. When it's time, I'll share. But today, just know that I can't WAIT to tell you about it and I can't wait for you to read it in its entirety. Every time I would sit down to write a piece of a chapter over the last few months, I felt like I was pouring a bit of my soul into each word I typed. It's been an incredibly draining process so far and at this rate, there's a chance I'll just totally cease to exist after the whole thing is written. Disappear into thin air, that's what I think.
So anyway... the first big step is done.
And now, I breathe.
I feel a deep sense of freedom now that I'm out from under a deadline. It's been a while since I've had a day with no expectations to write. I cleaned up the kitchen and finally organized my desk. It's now a home for me to work and write instead of a catch-all for all of our mail and random items picked up around the house. I made the bed, wiped down the table, emptied out the fridge and unloaded the dishwasher all before noon. I'm working on catching up on laundry, though that feels futile every day - deadline or no deadline.
I have a little boy with a horribly stuffy nose who spontaneously decided to take a nap around lunch time. You know my kid isn't feeling well when he randomly falls asleep in the middle of the day, on his bedroom floor, nonetheless. We've been watching Pixar movies and snuggling on the couch in our pajamas. He tries to lay his head on my tummy, but every time he gets comfortable, his baby sister kicks him square in the face from inside the womb. He gets irritated and moves to my lap. Sibling rivalry already. Love it.
I made two loaves of banana bread that came out a little overdone on the outside, but it tastes good and the house smells like home. I poured myself a cup of homemade spiced tea and sat on the couch with my friend Rachel's new book (which, so far, is fantastic). I've got a candle or two lit around the house and the sky outside is far more grey than I anticipated.
I feel a slowing-down... like I can finally take the time to notice the small things, like the way the light hits the kitchen counter in the morning. It makes the bowl of clementines light up just right. Or how half of the city's trees have dropped their leaves into the street in the last couple of days.
I know this is probably the calm before the storm, but the change of pace is so welcome and I feel like the world just needs to be gentle with me for a little while. With how busy I've been this fall, I've hardly even thought about the baby & her impending arrival in December (that's NEXT MONTH. How in the hell did THAT happen?). Not a single thing is pulled out of storage and I don't have a single newborn onesie for her yet. Mental note: I really need to get my crap together.
I'm also excited to spend more time here, in this space. I've only managed to squeeze out a blog post here and there when I can over the last 5-6 months. It's not that I don't want to be here, it's just that I lacked the capacity to do so. One thing I've noticed about blog writing vs. book writing, is that it's a bit like running and training for different things. With blogging, it feels like wind sprints. Quick, less than a thousand words a couple of times a week and you're done. With writing book chapters... it's thousands of words over several sittings to get to the finish line of one chapter. It's excruciating and long, more like training for a marathon. It's very difficult to go back and forth between the two. I expect that I'll need to get back into book-writing mode more after the first of the year, but for the next couple of months, I can share words here more often. That feels good.
So, all of that to say, thanks for being patient with me. It feels good to be here, to have the proposal done, and to slow down and prepare for baby's arrival. More soon.