I’d like to tell you I’m one of those people who was born knowing exactly what she wanted to do in life. That I could share some whimsical story written by my kiddie self so you could swoon over it and, despite the spelling errors and lack of conflict (Enneagram 9, right here), point out that my flair for fiction must have been coded directly into my DNA.
“Aw, shucks!” I’d say, your flattery sweeping a rosy blush across my cheeks. Then I’d return the favor, complimenting your audacity in wearing that ugly Christmas sweater. In March.
After shaking hands—a challenge in itself as your sweater sleeves, made entirely of pine needles, reach all the way to your fingertips—we’d each head on our merry way with a lilt in our step and warmth in our heart.
Yep, I’d sure like to start my introduction with that fun anecdote, but that’s just not how it all went down. (I do like that Christmas sweater, though. As far as I’m concerned you should wear it all year long. And maybe add some dancing lights.)
My journey into writing actually began in Bismarck, North Dakota, where I was born and raised and spent an inordinate amount of time creating backstories and developing plotlines for my Barbie dolls. Once I reached (er, exceeded) the age when toys and make believe were an acceptable part of a girl’s life, I turned to poetry.
The first poem I had ever written was for an assignment in junior high and it was chosen to be published in an anthology. My very own words printed in an honest-to-goodness book? I was hooked. Though publication wasn’t my ultimate goal, I did hide a secret diary of poetry between my mattress and box spring throughout my teen years, employing the metered cadence of rhyming verses to make sense of the world and myself.
Fast forward about a decade—past some wayward years and questionable decisions that still make me cringe and shake my head—and there I was a five years’ married stepmom, dog mom, and member of corporate society who suddenly found herself feeling unsettled and unfulfilled. I tried on a lot of different hats to try to fill that void, but even though I hadn’t, for years, written anything more than sappy love poems for my husband, I somehow knew that “writer” was the one that would fit.
That brings us to the here and now. Although the path has been bumpy, curvy, and much different than I expected (as I document often on The Truth in Fiction blog), I am thrilled to get to call myself a writer. More importantly: most days, I actually feel like one. It is an honor, a privilege, and a responsibility that I don’t take lightly. Words are powerful. When used well, they can heal hearts, promote positivity, and influence change. And I am humbled that God has entrusted me to use them to create encouraging and meaningful messages.
Because I believe that’s why we’re here. To love and serve and lift each other up. I believe it is through community and consistency, patience and perseverance that we come to find our purpose. I believe forgiveness and vulnerability are both valuable and necessary components of living wholeheartedly. And that it is never, NEVER too late to learn something new, do something different, or grow in the direction of the person we were made to be.
I am so grateful to be taking my own steps of growth and progress, emboldened by the love and wisdom and support of my husband, stepdaughters, family and friends, and you, dear reader. Thank you for being here, for joining me on this journey, and for allowing me to be a part of yours.