I just finished reading Stephen King’s “On Writing.” I highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in writing, not just because it gives lots of fantastic tools and suggestions, but because it is the most encouraging book on the subject that I’ve read. Whether you are an accomplished writer or just someone who wants to transfer something from your brain onto a blank piece of paper, King gives you permission to do it. “…you can, you should, and if you’re brave enough to start, you will.”
At the end of the book, he details the horrific accident he had in 1999. One day, around nine days after he enters the hospital, he finally gets up for the first time and walks three steps to the hospital commode next to his bed, sits there trying not to weep, and fails. He says “You try to tell yourself that you’ve been lucky, most incredibly lucky, and usually that works because it’s true. Sometimes it doesn’t work, that’s all. Then you cry.”
These three simple sentences pretty much sum up the last month for me. Yes, I lost my job. But there are several other people from the same company who lost their jobs recently as well, and frankly, I got a better deal. Even if that was only because I had been there longer and the severance policy is more favorable the more years you’ve been there, I’m probably in a better place than they are, at least financially. At least for awhile.
I’m blessed with a wonderful family who loves and supports me. I’ve learned that I am also blessed with amazing friends who love and support me. I am incredibly lucky.
And sometimes that’s enough.
I have things to do – painting our bedroom, working on my second draft of my book, volunteering at the church, searching the web for jobs. I’m busy enough. But sometimes all I can do is hang my head and cry. I don’t do that often, but it happens.
And today, when I was feeling particularly weepy, I was glad to find out that even the most accomplished of us get weepy too. Not that I’m comparing my unemployment to Mr. King’s almost life-ending accident. Don’t get me wrong – he wins that one hands down. But still, reading that line made me feel better about feeling bad. So maybe I’ll cry a little bit tonight. But I do know that I’ll get back to work after I'm done. I’ll probably go write something.