Some of you - a few of you - know that I am working on a book. This sounds romantic like I start the day with a typewriter and a mug of coffee on my writing desk, but most often it spews out of me after 2am with an urgency that's rather unpleasant.
It's not a pretty process when you're on the inside. I imagine it is very much like giving birth. There is a thing within you that so desperately wants to be manifest that you can no longer contain it. It wants to stay where it is safe and warm, where others' offensive comments cannot reach it, where it doesn't have to do the arduous work of breathing, feeding itself, or weathering the various daily disappointments that come with life on the outside.
And yet, it must come out. To keep it in any longer would mean death to the both of you.
Maybe you have been through this process, either as a mother or as an author. Maybe you've just gleefully appreciated books (or kiddos) and tossed them aside. But like children, they require your full attention, full energy, full presence. I haven't been giving mine the attention it needs, because I've been so depleted myself.
So in the coming weeks - months - years, you may start to hear a strange sound come out of me. It is not directed at you, it is not to be taken personally. It is the sound of "no." There are so many things I wish I could do, and if I keep this baby within me, the both of us will surely perish. So my attention is turning inward, towards me. Towards whatever nurtures my body and soul. And whatever remains will pour forth, perhaps to delight you in the years that come.