Tomorrow will mark four days in a row I didn't have to report to one job or another. That's a record. When I say "job", I'm not talking about working on my book or photography, but at one of those hourly paying gigs that help feed our bank account.
When I envisioned these four wide open days, I saw myself up early, typing away at my book, filling dozens of pages even before heading out for my morning walk with the puppies. I would then edit some photos, write a blog post or two before lunch, followed by making a major dent on my to-do notebook (it's expanded way beyond a list.) I would still have time to work out, and take the pups and my camera on an afternoon walk to the pond.
Well, of course, in real life it didn't work out that way. I had so many odds and ends to take care of that it felt like my days just kind of piddled away.
I did manage to work on my book a couple of times, edit some photos, and publish a blog post, but there are some major to-do's I still haven't tackled.
There's always tomorrow...
I say that too often these days.
The thing is... and I hate to put words to the phantom thoughts drifting through my brain.. but I'm beginning to think it's impossible to be a writer, photographer, blogger, personal historian, mother, wife, daughter, sister, friend, waiter, substitute teacher, and.... um, I think that's it.... all at the same time.
But that doesn't mean I'm giving up.
On one of my recent walks, I noticed new grapevine twisting around an old limb. Clinging, climbing, intent on moving ever up and up. I was first struck by the bright red color, but its tenacity is what mesmerizes and inspires me now. Tom cleared out as much grapevine as he could this winter - it tends to choke the trees - but grapevine is one stubborn, headstrong plant.
I want to be like that.
Last Wednesday night I attended a photography workshop by Clay Blackmore, a professional portrait photographer about my age who started with film thirty years ago. He had to make the switch to digital - and to edgier, artsy photos - to stay on top of his business.
The guy next to me and I started talking. He also was about my age and had been a film photographer who only recently picked up a digital camera, trying to get back into photography and make some money from it. I can't remember now what he asked me, but in answering him, I mentioned that I was writing a book as well as doing some portrait and art photography.
That's when the woman sitting in front of us, also about our age, turned around. She asked me about my book and how I found my critique group. Seems she started writing a romance novel twenty years ago herself, but set it on a shelf somewhere along the way. It had been gnawing on her lately to dust it off and finish it, but she just hadn't done it yet.
When we said good night a little later, I told her "Get back on that book tomorrow!" And she promised she was going to. I believe she did.
I like to think I inspired her. But she also inspired me.
So tomorrow, I'll be working on my book. And my photos. And my blogs. And transcribing an interview, scanning some old photos...
Tomorrow has arms wide open, full of possibility, don't you know?
I hope you've had a great week that included at least a few minutes of doing something you've dreamed about, something that makes your imagination soar and your heart beat faster.
If not, there's still time. What are you waiting for?
"Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out."
~ Robert J. Collier