Today is the last day of my part time job at a local newspaper. I've been there for ten months, and even though I wasn't planning to start working this past year, it's been a very good experience. I know I've been motivated to write in a completely new way because of having less time to do it, and the fact that my writing came together this year is due in part to my job outside of the house.
Life is full of endings and beginnings. In time the seasons change, and we move on to something else. Transitions are filled with many different emotions, from foreboding to joy, but the one certainty in life is that change will come to us. It is how we manage it that builds our character and tells the world what we are made of.
I've never been a person who could be described as easily "rolling with the punches." I'm a settler personality, not a pioneer. But whether you thrive on change or are terrified of it, you will have to adapt in order to survive in our culture. Every time I make a change and it turns out well, it takes away some of my fear for the next transition. Age also helps with this dilemma because I understand myself more with each passing year and can rely on my skills and personality to get me through a difficult chaotic time and safely to the other side of stability.
Yesterday afternoon I spent some time scouring Writer's Market to make notes on which magazines and papers I can query for some freelance work. It's all new and somewhat overwhelming, but I remind myself that I can do this, and it's only scary at the beginning when you feel uncertain, but it will get easier. In the midst of this positive self-talk, I received an e-mail accepting an article I wrote on screenwriting basics for a writing newsletter. The editor is a friend who asked me to submit something on that topic, but I had no guarantee they would want to purchase it. That was encouraging. I know I'm moving in the right direction.
All endings have a bittersweet quality to them. I will take a lot of things away with me from this job: friendship, a sense of self I rediscovered for 12 hours a week away from my kids and my house, a growing competency in my tasks and therefore in myself, and the solid routine that I came to enjoy.
There remains a small fear that I won't push myself to write as hard when I have more breathing space and time in my week, but I'm going to stir my motivation like it's cooking on the stove, and attempt to keep the heat alive. That's all I can do. Face my new beginning with a sense of hope and joy, for I'm stepping directly into my dream without a safety net below me, and while scary, it feels right on every level.