DIVE! DIVE! DIVE! That’s all hear in my head these days. It might as well be DUCK! or JUMP! or RUN! for all the discomfort it’s causing – butterflies in my stomach, hitch in my breath, pins and needles jabbing at my insides AND my outsides. I’m trying not to look like a nervous wreck, but I’m not sleeping well, and hiding the fact that I’m about to publish another book is impossible.
The feeling reminds me of the hours before Mr. Blaine, our middle school principal, announced the winner of the student council president’s race. It reminds me, too, of the day he suggested I sing a solo at our 8th-grade graduation. It’s like the minutes before my wedding (the last one); the moment I learned I was pregnant; the day I received a publishing contract for IB; the hours leading up to a hurricane. Something big and scary is about to happen. It could end up being simply a wonderful memory, a lesson learned, or it could be a catastrophe. Regardless, it’ll probably change my life. And I’m not sure I’m ready for it.
Something had to give. I’m blessed with the ability to stay home and write because my husband works and travels his ass off. I’m also cursed with a constant guilt that, while I make myself available, 24/7, for him and the kids, I’m not financially contributing. When we moved into a house a couple years ago and took on a bigger mortgage, higher taxes, and totally unreasonable insurance premiums, the guilt became a nagging insistence. I’ve done some editing work, but a single novel can suck up 3-5 days of my time. Between the dog and kids, the husband and the house(s), I already have precious little to spare.
So, I’m diving in. (And yes, for those who’ve been reading a while and noticed, I use “So” a lot when I’m wrapping things up. Sometimes I edit it out, sometimes I don’t. It’s like “just” and “that” – people are creatures of habit. I bet YOU use a few words repetitively, too. So there.) My gut (instinct, little bird, angel on my shoulder) tells me I’m doing the right thing. Given the variety of predicaments I’ve found myself in over these past 46 years, I can’t testify to its accuracy. I have a kick-ass support group right now, though. You, Scott, family, friends, neighbors – for better or worse – are all riding this wave with me. Such an army must surely be victorious. And, with CKR, we’re well-armed; it’s like Kid Rock says:
If it looks good, you'll see it.
If it sounds good, you'll hear it.
If it's marketed right, you'll buy it.
But...if it's real, you'll feel it.
I might not be ready. But it’s time.
Take a deep breath … close your eyes … and listen for the splash …