I'm probably going about this the wrong way. I've had such a desire to write lately, spurred on by Jennifer Fulwiler's latest book, One Beautiful Dream: The Rollicking Tale of Family Chaos, Personal Passions, and Saying Yes to Them Both, that I have spent way too much time in front of my computer trying to catch up on lost time. The laundry has piled up, the floor needs to be swept, I've barely gotten food on the table and I think my kids may not remember what a vegetable is since even I only have a vague sense that they still exist. So, it's time. It's time for me to write on this silly blog again. I say silly because it really needs to be updated.
Jen's book is not out until May 1st, but I got a copy because she's my BFF, and also pre-ordered from Barnes and Noble and they sent copies out early (I'm pretty sure Jen doesn't know she's my BFF). It basically told the story of her passion for writing and how she managed to publish a book in the midst of a very busy family life. Although she is Catholic and has a pretty dramatic book about her conversion story that I also loved to read, this book doesn't focus so much on faith as it does on inspiring women (moms) to follow their passions.
I see other moms doing this, following their dreams, and always wonder how they do it. This book helped me to see that to follow my passions, I must be intentional, but also flexible. Family, of course, ought to come first, but that looks different in each family. She also recommends that we moms bring our families into our passions, that the family culture should be one of support. She explains that each person should feel free to pursue what makes them come alive and be a support for one another so all can flourish.
Lately, I would not describe myself as flourishing. My color is more gray than red hot (only one shade of gray in case you wondered). I realize now that I have pushed aside a lot of my personal passions, in order to save up enough energy to keep my family afloat. That strategy has backfired. I think Jen may have a point. In order for me to be the mom I need to be with energy and life, I need to do what I do best. I need to use my gifts. I need to search after my dreams. Then my gray life may have some more color and my family will probably happier for it.