Sunday, April 8, 2012

Godsends Revisited

It’s Sunday evening of the Easter weekend, and I am sitting on my living room sofa with Mendelssohn, my overweight attention-seeking orange tabby cat, curled into my leg. He’s snoring loudly, and content. Two of my other cats are curled up together on the ottoman, even though they don’t necessarily like each other. My forth cat (yes, I’m that crazy cat man) is upstairs sleeping somewhere. He’ll soon come running at the sound of the scoop digging into the cat food container.

The Easter weekend has allowed me to catch up with friends from Ottawa visiting in nearby Magog, and another friend back in Montréal for the holiday. It was great to see my friends, and it reminded me of a blog post I wrote for Bea’s Book Nook during the Freestyle Love Virtual Book Tour back in February. I thought I would share that post again.


I am at the beginning. And it’s terribly frightening. I’ve been faithful to my writing ever since 2003, when my first essay was published. I was living in Ottawa, Ontario, at the time, and I had to sandwich my writing in and around my day job. Fluent in English and French, staying employed in Ottawa — the nation’s capital — was easy for me. When I moved to Sherbrooke, Quebec, in 2010, finding employment proved difficult despite my skill set. So I made the decision then to focus on my art — writing, painting, music. Was this providence at work? Maybe.

At the beginning, I’ve given myself over to the universe, no longer resisting the path laid out before me. The nine-to-five world never felt right to me, like I was immured in a dark abyss that day after day held me down, sucked the life out of me. But I did what was necessary to survive — to have food on the table and shelter over my head. In the past two years, pursuing my art, there have been good times and not so good times, but through it all I’ve learned to keep the faith. Some days my faith is tested, yet when I hold on to faith, all that I need is supplied — not too much, not to little … but just enough.

Giving myself over to providence, I write every day. Rain, sleet, snow, or a bright sunshiny day, I write. Sometimes I park myself at my desk in my office area upstairs, other times I settle in at the kitchen table. When there are too many distractions around the house, I pack up and head to Le Tassé, the neighbourhood coffee shop.

Despite my successes — publication of my short stories and poetry, and now more recently my debut novel, Freestyle Love — there are days when I still doubt myself. Am I really a writer or am I just playing at it? My successes don’t seem to matter. Maybe I’m not the writer I thought I was after all …?

On days like these, when doubt swarms over my body, I am thankful for my godsends. My godsends are my friends, spread out across North America, who are friends to me and my writing. Like my friend Heather-Anne who, as I’m writing now, sends an e-mail to say how proud she is of me. Heather-Anne, like my other godsends, reaches out to me (without asking) at the time that I need encouragement the most. She is, as Julia Cameron puts it, a “believing mirror” whose support has been constant.

Messages from my godsends, like the one I received from Heather-Anne, get me back to the page, help me to stay focused. And in the age of Twitter, Facebook and a plethora of other social networking sites, staying focused is sometimes difficult.

As the day winds down, I am settling in for a quiet evening. It was a productive day. I stayed the course, putting in time at the page, the easel and the piano. Doubt still lingers, but I’m not discouraged, thankful for the god-sent blessings — in friendship, in life, in work — that keep flowing in my direction.

1 comment:

  1. Happy Easter, sweetie! I am glad you had a good weekend. I cooked Easter dinner yesterday and today and seeing my friend R from Ottawa for lunch. Good luck with the creative work this week!