Tonight I bathed my kids, rinsing suds from their hair, water rushing down their backs in soft, streaming rivulets, the scent of Johnsons soap hanging in the air.
I put their pyjamas on. We sat down and read stories. Payton is learning to read. I pointed words out to her carefully. I cleaned the kitchen. I put a load of laundry in. And for once in my life, I was grateful for these tasks. These wonderful distractions that smell of baby soap and laundry detergent and bubble gum toothpaste. Their warm bodies that press against me when we read in a slow cadence. Their incessant, sometimes overlapping, chatter.
My beautiful, noisy, distractions.
I reflected tonight on the irony that I complained bitterly that these same distractions made it nearly impossible for me to write Having Grace.
And now that the writing is done, it is these same distractions that keep me sane while I watch and wait for word on my full.
Life has a certain structure to it. A loose and chaotic, but charming nonetheless, structure.
What am I so afraid of? I asked myself as I tucked my little kids into their respective Princess and Toy Story beds, hair spilling across their faces, back lit by the soft glow of a Sesame Street Night Light.
In many ways, I am already rich.
In many ways, I am already successful.
In many ways- in most ways, actually, I've already made it.
I remind myself why I write.
Not to be represented.
Not to see my name in print (although, OK, I wouldn't totally hate that.)
Not to get rich.
But simply because I enjoy doing it.
And because I honestly don't know how not to do it.
So I've let it go. Whatever happens, happens. With Tricia, with anyone. With Having Grace, with any future projects.
My manuscript is my baby, yes, to a certain extent. But I have real babies.
My beautiful, wonderful, distractions.