Tuesday, September 13, 2016

An Explanation For My Angst

Before I begin this painfully raw blog entry, I feel like I need to throw out a disclaimer. Nothing I say here is directed at anyone in particular. My heartache is my own and is not caused by anyone. If you read this and think, "I wonder if she's talking about me," I'm not. In fact, if you read this and think that, then I didn't write this entry very well because I don't want anyone to take anything here personally. That being said, I think it's time I explained my angst from the past few days...

Some years ago, a very wise woman taught me an important lesson that I will never, ever forget. She told me that Satan really amps up his personal attack game when God is doing or is about to do something incredible in your - my - life. That singular thought has been my saving grace throughout the years. If it felt like everything was going wrong, it was because God was on the move. That was exciting, even in the middle of the turmoil. Well, sometime over the past five or six days, I lost that. I was hit with one thing after another that hurt, that depressed me, that beat me down enough for me to lose that. There were times this week that I cried out to God in anger and desperation. Never once did I remember that hope I had always clung to, the promise of things to come, until today.

I've always been told I was the type of person people feel comfortable just word vomiting to. Though I still scratch my head about that, I don't mind it. In fact, I love that people trust me and feel comfortable enough to do that. I'm a good secret keeper, I guess, and I don't often interject with my own stuff. I think that's why I often forget that I need people I can do that with myself. Today I got the opportunity to just get it all out, and get some better perspective.

For anyone that's known me for very long, knowing I have a congenital heart defect is no surprise. For those that don't know, I have a murmur, a leaky valve, weird palpitations, and a pulmonary aneurysm. Lately, my heart has been doing this weird thing where it will beat perfectly fine, then it feels like a car engine trying to turn over with no success. That's the best way I can explain it. It's not racing, it's not slow, it's just beating hard. And then it skips beats. It's uncomfortable, and it's pretty darn frightening at times. I went to the ER for it at the end of July...and it led to this whole sequence of events that, quite frankly, just makes me angry. Long story short, I can't see my cardiologist until October. It's been suggested to me by a few people that I look for anew doctor but I've decided to wait until after this appointment to see how it goes. It took me three tries to get an appointment with him because of one person in the office telling me twice that she would set things up and call me back, and never did. By the time the appointment was set up - three weeks later - I was feeling frustrated, forgotten, and not very important.

Another thing I have never hidden from anyone is my desperate want to be a mother. I confessed to a close friend this week that there is honestly not a day that goes by when I don't think about it on some level. Some days are easier to deal with than others, and this week, after certain events transpired with not only friends, but things I read in the news...this longing was not so easy to deal with. I felt the loss of something I've never even had so greatly, and I grieved deeply. I was angry, questioning why God would give children to some and not to others. I felt overlooked.

The final nail in my pity party coffin came from a Skype call with my editor. Jessica, I'm calling you out by name simply because I can, and because it's easier for me. When your editor says she wants to Skype so you can talk about the chapter face to face rather than in notes and email...it doesn't cultivate a great sense of confidence in the matter. As it turned out, the anxiety that was growing within me while I was at the gym was justified. Jess and I talked, and it was not good news. In fact, it was pretty horrible news. Apparently my main plot for this third book in my series could pretty much have been ripped from another book/movie I had never even seen before. I was crushed to say the least. Months of hard work, of poor sleep because my brain wouldn't turn off, of research and planning...all of it was now out the window. I was going to have to start back at square one. I found the movie online and watched it, thinking after the first twenty or so minutes, it wasn't really that bad. Then the movie progressed and I could not believe the similarities. How in the world could this movie and my book be so similar when I hadn't even seen it? That was it. I was done. No new book for the faire in May. I would have to tell the person working on my cover that all his work has been for nothing. I would have to disappoint people who were counting on me having my third book for sale next year. I felt...a lot of things.

This morning I got to get all of this out with someone I love and trust, and she reminded me that God is always working behind the scenes and pointed my attention back to Him. In talking to her, admitted that this book had been so hard to write at times. There were moments I was literally in tears because I was constantly feeling like it wasn't as good, it wasn't as dynamic, it wasn't BIG enough. I know now that my feelings were right. Jess told me point blank that she feels book 2 is better, and is there any wonder? Book 2 came so easily to me! There was never the struggle I had with this one. Then I also realized that the chapters Jess loves the most of book 3 so far are the ones that came so easily. Of course the rest of it is crap. I was trying too hard.  I was trying to do it on my own, rather than letting God take the lead as I had last time.

So now I'm feeling sort of...disillusioned, I guess. I needed the reminder to trust God this morning, and that it's okay to be upset, and to question, and even to rage because God is a big God - He can handle it. I just can't let myself wallow in it. Jess is confident we can fix this, and I trust her without question. If she thinks there's still a story here, even if it needs to be tweaked, I don't doubt her. In fact, I'm so thankful she told me, no matter how uncomfortable it made her to do it and how many tears I shed hearing it. Words cannot express how grateful I am for her honesty, even when it's painful. My series would not be what it is and what it will be without her hand in it.So I have a tentative hope that this will not all go down in flames. Half, maybe, but not all, and that's something.

As for the other things...y'all, I don't even know. It's going to be a fight every day to trust God knows what He's doing. But I'm going to keep fighting, and I appreciate the people in my life who go to battle for me when I can't do it myself. You are truly invaluable.

So there you have it, an explanation for my angst. Now that I've gotten it all out, I think it's time for me to go back to work and get this book back on track.


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