I meant to post last Thursday but then that whole Christmas thing erupted and I'm just now getting back into the action. If my editor reads this I'll vehemently deny it, but I got no writing done last week. Wait. I lie. I wrote five lines of very compelling dialogue.
So what did I do, you wonder. Well, I prepared for my son's very first Christmas. I never once jerked awake in the dead of night in fear of missing my deadline. Nor did I pause in the middle of playing with my son, or unpacking Christmas ornaments wishing I were writing at my desk. I did something I have been striving to do for the last six years I've been studying Buddhism: I lived in the moment. There was no future, no worries, no pining for what might or might not be. Dude, I never even checked my horoscope!
And it was wonderful. I was free. It was the best Christmas I've ever had. The smile on my four-month-old's face when we showed him his baby gym is a smile I'll carry in my heart forever.
Oh but there was a price to be paid. Today, now that presents have been put away and my mother-in-law came over to watch my son, I am struggling to get back into chapter 21. My characters resented being put on pause for a week, but they're coming around. Slowly. They'll eventually realize that the only way they get their happy ending is cooperation. And since we're in the middle of Act II, we have a lot of work to do.
But I would pay this price ten times over again for the week I had. (I just knocked on wood and kissed my storyteller in case Fate was listening.) For ten years, writing was The Most Important Thing in my life. I gave up weekends with my family and my husband for it. I resented Christmas because it meant that I'd give up valuable writing time to hang out with my family. If you had told me that I would be a stay-at-home mommy at the age of 31, I would've thrown holy water on you and cried, "The power of Christ compels you!"
Having a child changed that and I'm still getting used to closing down my document in the middle of a scene when my son cries for me. Trust me, the words "wait just one moment" means nothing to a child. In fact, those words will bring certain calamity to you so learn from my mistake.
Anyway, where was I? Oh yes. I wouldn't give up one moment I have spent with my son and my family that I could've spent writing. Even though I'm not as far along with my book as I'd like to be (but still on schedule!) and I had to ask for an extension, I don't regret my choices.