“All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to one life before we can enter another.” – Anatole France
Change terrifies the best of us. We get so comfortable with things the way they are that we fight change—even when the change promises to be positive for us – with all that we have.
I’m the type of person who, once I begin something, I like to see it through to the end before I begin something else. This is how I scratch things off my to-do list. I attack one item at a time, until all items or projects have been completed. I don’t like my concentration to be divided among tasks. Even though I am able to read several books simulatneously, I’ve fought adapting this in my writing life. It has worked for me for years, so I’ve adamantly resisted change. Until recently.
I’m currently working on a short story, She’ll Never Tell, that will be included in a short story anthology slated to be released next year and I was about four pages in when I hit a creative wall. And, for days, I just sat there staring at that wall. As is my habit, I fought starting over even though the idea had floated into my mind a time or two. No, I stubbornly resisted. This old way has always worked for me.
Except it wasn’t working this time. At the point where I was, I just couldn’t come up with one single word to write. I knew, in my mind, what I wanted to have happen and why the scene was important, but I couldn’t move beyond thoughts. I had and have this picture in my mind of the scene unfolding, but I couldn’t write it down on paper.
After a few days of non-movement, I decided that I had to do something or this story would never get written (re-written really). So, I went and printed off the four pages I did have already and I started over with those pages. And, you know what, there was movement. I felt newly inspired. There was new fire to get the project moving along. No, it’s not how I normally do things. But the way I normally do things wasn’t working this time, so I had to change. And I’m glad I did.
I was afraid to start over because I feared I would become stuck in the cycle of re-writing my beginning until I completely lost sight of the middle. But that didn’t happen. I was able to get past the beginning, move through the middle and saw my way to the end.
Some people, maybe most people, resist change. They become so comfortable to what they’re used to that fear of change keeps them from venturing into new territory. I’m learning to welcome change. No matter what change it is, I want to welcome it. In the new year, I hope I’m met with lots of change; it’ll mean I’m becoming unhinged from the old and welcoming the new.
Here’s to a year of changes!
Peace & Love,