“It’s almost August. The month my life will change again whether if I want it to or not.”

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I said that right before July bled into August, knowing my work hours were shifting, knowing my boys were starting school virtually, knowing I needed to make changes and shift my time and perspective.

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It felt heavy the way humidity does when it settles around your shoulders and neck. Bothersome, energy-draining, heavy.

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The calendar changed and the weekend stayed magical. Perhaps August would be alright. A new idea rolled in my mind. I felt a small spark of enthusiasm for what could be. Monday came and went with minor excitment. A new shift happened, unexpected, good, different. My mind felt fuzzy with happiness and trepidation.

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Tuesday morning. My best friends. Coffee. Children running and playing. Beautiful weather.
“I’ve been thinking about your idea. I know what you should do.”
“I knew you’d think about it! What’s your thought?” I knew she would, that’s why I told her in passing and let it go, let it simmer, let her mind sort it out the way it always does for me. I felt myself move to the edge of my seat, waiting.
“Don’t do that, everyone does it, it’s a hard market.”
“Ok.” Shit. She’s right. There had to be more.
“Do _____, you’re already good at it, you already have supplies, it’ll be easy to ship.” Fireworks. It felt like a roman candle bursting in my mind. She was more than right. She talked excitedly, my other friend grinned, seeing how happy I was with this new thought, this new idea. Could I really do that?

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It felt hard to concentrate on much else for the next two days. I worked the rest of Tuesday and Wednesday we took the kids fishing. The back of my mind rolled and rocked with ideas, possibilities, doubts. So. Many. Doubts. Tuesday while the boys were at their dad’s apartment I sorted through my art supplies and pulled out my art journals. I flipped through them, remembering when I made each page, the ones most significant to me I lingered on. I read over a few of the journal entries. We talked about the possibilities. I flipped from the back to the front of my journal and landed on the fourth page I had ever made.

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I don’t know that coincidences are really accidents. I think they are more bread crumb trails God leaves for us, helping us to find our way home, back to him, back to the path we were meant to be on. There had already been one earlier in the evening as we flipped through my old planner system I had created. It was fresh in my mind when I read the words in my journal entry.

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“All I want to do is make art and write but God needs to show up and tell me it means something because I want to help people and I want to be happy.”

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I usually tell people I wanted to be a mom. It’s true. I wanted to have a big family and do all these crazy things with my kids. What I don’t say outloud is that what I really wanted, what I really dreamnt about, what has tugged at my heart since as long as I can remember, is that I wanted to write books and I really believed they could change peoples lives. It’s the second part of that statement that’s terrifying to say outloud. Who am I to think I could change anyone’s life? Why would I ever think that as a child?

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Why have I dreamnt my entire life of being an author and spent the last three years longing to do nothing but write and make art?

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What the heck does one do with that? It’s too lofty. It’s too presumptuous. It’s too… it’s just plain too much.

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Then yesterday night the last shoe dropped. We’ve always talked about how I live my life waiting for the next shoe to drop. There always seems to be one more ready to fall. Something about last nights news felt final. Like letting out a deep held breath. Exhale. Breathe. Hold on tight.

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We did this before, my bestie and I, and everything is different now. Everything but our friendship, which has done nothing but grow deeper and stronger and filled us both with life. It felt like a bad dream then and it feels like one again. In some ways I feel stronger to handle it. In some ways the sorrow is deeper. The lump in my throat is all too familiar and I know it will live there for a long time. I know we will survive this change. But my God… it does feel stupid.

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And in it all, I feel God shoving me off the cliff. In the most loving way possible. My life couldn’t be more different. It couldn’t feel like a worse time to try something new and crazy. And then I think, isn’t that usually the best time? What else do I have to lose at this point? If not now then when? I’m not kicking, I’m not screaming, I feel a little complacent as I dive off the cliff.