I announced a couple of years ago that I’d be posting fewer blogs and only sending the occasional newsletter because I was taking a Secret Society of Happy People sabbatical to write a book. I figured my absence would be six months or less. But – voila – it’s been almost two years (other than popping out of my writing cave for Happiness Happens Month and Hunt for Happiness Week.)
Life happened and it took longer to finish that first draft than I had anticipated.
After my mom passed away I wanted to read a “Tuesdays with Morrie” type of story about grief. I wanted to know how someone else navigated the grief road in front of me – but not in a self-help, religious or a life-off-the-grid way. I never found that specific book, despite the plethora of grief books.
My experience reminded me of Toni Morrison’s quote, “If there’s a book that you want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it.” However when I mentioned writing this book, a few close friends advised me to wait a couple of years before starting to write it so I could have perspective about grief.
They suggested that I journal during that phase. About five years after my mom’s passing I made my first attempt to write the book. After a week of non-stop writing, I realized when I re-read it that the pages of words were unworthy of a reader’s interest. Perhaps it was cathartic for me, but it wasn’t anywhere near publishable. I decided to focus on happier things and set the pages aside.
A few more years went by and some of my friends lost their moms too. They were now draped in the life changing cloak of grief. I wanted to give them the book that I wanted to read after my mom passed with their condolence card. But I still couldn’t find that story. After trying to write it I understood why it’s not on the bookshelves. It’s not a story you want to tell once you’ve adjusted to life without your mom.
However, I couldn’t deny that that something in my soul had been sparked again. And I felt the need to write about finding my new normal after losing my mom. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever written. My manuscript is back from the editor and the revisions will be equally challenging. If I didn’t believe that this story might help others navigating grief, I’d table it again.
Sometimes that’s how life works – a situation sparks us to take action. It sparks us to dig deep into our soul and do something that we never planned on doing. It’s these experiences that are the catalyst for growth.
I’m excited to announce that the focus of our newly re-titled blog, Life Sparks, will be about life experiences that spark us to expand how we think, act, and feel. So, I’d love to hear about one of your Life Sparks lessons in the comments below.
We’re also very happy to unveil our updated website… check it out.