Sometimes we rage against where we are in life. Especially compared to her.
Her – over there – with the easily strung together words or the pretty blog or the stylish shoes or the way with making sense of motherhood.
We see the 4×6 snapshot and call it life. That tiny printout. We don’t look beyond its paper thin borders. We throw our hands up and shrug our shoulders and mutter, “Well, if I had what she had I could do it too.” I could be enjoying my own Polaroid moment.
I could write if I had the time.
I could craft if I had the supplies.
I could have a book deal if I had the connections.
I could bake if I had a baby sitter.
I could make music if I didn’t live in an apartment.
I could make a difference if my blog was bigger.
You know how it goes.
But here’s the footnote we too often, too easily, too breezily ignore: what she’s doing didn’t come easy to her either.
She had to fight for it. She had to dig in teeth and tenaciously refuse to give up on what she wanted.
She had to carve out time, space, energy, determination, play dates, juggled appointments, budgets, and every other un-photogenic reality to make it this far down the path of the dream she’s been chasing.
There are no short cuts.
There is only through.
Through the hard seasons when you have no clue what you’re doing as a mother. When the baby is still an alien to you almost as scary as all the other mothers who seem to never need sleep, sympathy or chocolate.
Through the jobs that don’t have the word “dream” anywhere in the title, but pay the bills with honor.
Through the heart breaking daycare drop-offs.
Through the long commutes and desperate prayers and bad radio stations.
Through the online classes or the mentorship programs or the writing workshops or the tutoring or the practicing, practicing, practicing.
Through the lonely nights.
Through the working all day and writing late into the night.
Through the empty comment boxes.
Through the questioning it all.
No picture can do those thousands of words justice.
Through is hard and lonely. But keep going anyway.
Let’s not compare. Especially not our beginnings to someone else’s middle. No, let’s not compare.
Let’s cheer instead.