Last week, after school, my 7th grade daughter came running through the door. Completely out of breath, she said, "Mom, there's a hummingbird trapped in our garage!"
I thought her concern was precious, and as a parent, I was grateful I had raised her with compassion - that she could see the bird's need and wanted to help.
So, I went into the garage and sure enough, there was that poor little bird trying to escape through one of the windows. Because I knew I'd never be able to reach him on my own, I looked around for something to help me pursuade the little bird down and out the garage door. I grabbed a badmitten racket and very slowly and carefully brought the bird to a safe corner of the window. The poor thing was terrified. His little body trembled, but his wings were as still as could be. Have you ever seen a hummingbird not buzzing his wings? Me either. At least, not until that moment.
Once I had him positioned, I gently scooped him into my hand being careful not to hurt him. In that second, my thoughts immediately went to, "I'm holding a hummingbird!" How many people can say they've done that? The most amazing thing of all, however, was the noise he let out. The best description I could come up with for it was a cry. I had no idea that hummingbirds could even make a sound. My heart sank as I thought about how desperate he must have felt in those moments. So I quickly approached the garage door,opened my hand and off he flew, out into the beautiful world.
In your writing journey, do you ever feel like that hummingbird? Are you desperately looking for a way out of a closed window? Maybe you can even see your goal on the other side, but you can't get to it because there's a barrier holding you back.
Then the unbelievable happens. You get a request! Now you're filled with so much excitement that you literally tremble.
But then...the dreaded rejection arrives. The feeling of being so high has plumeted to the ultimate low of lows. And you're filled with self-dout.
Maybe you feel vulnerable. Or scared. Or even a bit like crying.
You fight against the negative thoughts and struggle to make sense of it all.
But then you realize that you have support. It might be family and friends or critique partners or even an online community of writers. Those relationships give you just enough comfort that you can rebuild your confidence and move on in your journey.
So, during your ups and downs of the writing process, remember that we're all here for you. When you quiver with joy, we'll celebrate with you. When you shudder with disappointment we'll wrap you in words of encouragement.
When you're ready, we'll open our hands and let you soar. Because if you look behind you, there may very well be an open door just waiting for you to fly through it.