But my son, also a writer, suggested that I was 'thinking about my writing instead of writing what I was thinking.' Which was simply a kinder variation on the theme of "phoning it in" my husband was whistling in the background.
They're both right, of course. I really do enjoy the lighthearted times we spend together, especially since it has always been my great good fortune to find myself surrounded by smart, sassy, kooky women (and very patient men...) I love the fact that, in your comments on my posts, you'll riff off of what I was doing or how I was writing. So when I wrote about 25 goofy things I hate, all your comments started with "Don't you hate it when..." And when I wrote an 'epistle' in scripture language, you all commented in scripture language! How funny is that?? SUCH a good time!
But I've been trying to write "happy" when really, I've been kind of sad for a couple of weeks. And evidently I'm not a good enough writer to fake it.
See, I made a tough decision two weeks ago. It was one of those things where you rediscover the power and peace that come from fasting and prayer. It was most definitely the right thing to do, as was further evidenced by the fact that the other people involved came to the same conclusions, in the same ways, albeit with a slightly different objective in mind.
This isn't a super-clear image, but if you look very closely, perhaps using opera glasses and a healthy dose of imagination, you can see me in the back left corner. From left, there is a blond woman (Jenny), a taller man kind of behind us, and then me.
I won't bore you with the details, but the upshot is, after four years of directing the Las Vegas Mormon Youth Symphony and Chorus, four years of all but selling my soul for the work we were doing with those wonderful kids, I decided to resign at the end of this season.
What's more, the chorus part of it, which really was my creation, will no longer exist. Period.
Oh, I can't even begin to tell you how painful this decision has been. How many tears have been shed. How many times I've asked myself whether I could possibly give the kind of love and dedication and energy to anything else after everything that I have poured into this organization.
In my life until now, I have been blessed with a pretty clear vision of the path ahead. Not so this time. This is the first time I've ever walked 'away' from something like this without heading 'toward' something new, and it's requiring faith and patience and trust in the Lord like I have never really had to show before.
But I do trust that good things are ahead. If there's one thing I've learned over the last 25 years, it's that He never takes something from me without handing me something bigger and better and filled to overflowing with opportunities for growth and joy. Never.
So I'm sorry for the distracted air with which I have been writing lately. I feel like somehow I've been dishonest. I do enjoy writing for writing's sake, but occasionally I need to remember that this is a log, a journal of sorts, and that often the best writing I do is that which really shows who I am and where I'm at on the journey.
And where I'm at right now, I think, may be a different kind of beginning. Standing in Frost's 'yellow wood', so to speak, looking down diverging roads as far as I can until they bend in the undergrowth of the unknown.
But I have learned, as Paul paraphrases for the Corinthians, the truth of Isaiah's faith-filled, hope-filled, joy-filled declaration:
"Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him."
You know what? I'm counting on that.