From Sister #2 via e-mail today: "The last time you wrote on your blog was January 17th. WRITE!"
Ouch. I admit it--I've signed in, only to sign out again, unable to write about anything. It seems that tiny little nuggets of doubt have crept in, taken root. The freelance that last month was overwhelming has slowed to a sluggish, painful trickle. The Really Big Company that keeps me "On Call" (and continues to hold and "nurture" my 401K) has gone to radio silence. I will be dropped shortly from a company that requires months of testing and exhaustive interviews to enter. Part of me sensibly says, "It's the economy, Stupid." Yet the part of me that harbors doubt, self-loathing, whispers, "If you were a better writer and editor, you'd still be in demand."
But it's not just the doubt. It's also the not-quite-but-seeming-failures that register as dull thuds in my chest. Becca will turn 2 in a matter of weeks. And with that fateful date fast approaching, I'm asked by family, friends, and virtual strangers alike, "When is Number Two coming along?" In response, a tight, pained smile plasters across my face. The response varies: "Oh, Becca's enough of a handful for right now." "Maybe in awhile." "We'll see..." The truth is much simpler: "We're trying, but...nothing. While Becca was a miracle--against all odds and precautions--now that we're actually open to adding to the chaos...nothing. And all around me, friends and acquaintances are happily sporting baby bumps. Three out of the eight-or-so mothers from Becca's Mother's Day Out class are expecting, due in April. And me? I'm undergoing blood tests to ensure that everything is okay."
I shouldn't complain--we're so incredibly blessed with Becca and are far from reverting to IVF treatments--but I still am beginning to feel like a bit of a failure. Because trying is now shifting to TRYING. And within a few more months will resort to UNDERGOING TREATMENT. What is currently a dull thud will soon verge on a painful ripping in the area that houses my heart.
I understand the need to rely on faith. The knowledge that There Is A Greater Plan. But patience has never been my strong suit. And the sudden void is beginning to resonate in ways I didn't expect. The absences--of work, of words, of inspiration, of life--are beginning to wear on me. My near constant work of caring for others, putting out fires, keeping all in order, is ringing hollow. The bareness echoes.
The days of February don't help any. This limbo between winter and spring has always been pained. It's temptingly sunny, but not warm enough. Too cool to run about outside, but so painfully tempting from indoors. No-man's-land sucks.
So I'm holding out for spring. Green, fresh earth. Warm, nurturing sun. Life coming back. Renewal. And I'm holding on to the ideals of faith, hope, A Master Plan. And in between, maybe I'll write more often. Post a picture that sparks delight. A song that stirs the soul. In other words, keep moving forward and embracing the joys of life as they occur.