Today I printed a draft layout of Patchwork and Ornament. Taken from the journals and writings of my late mother-in-law, Jenny Feldman, P&O details her life from growing up in the South Bronx during the Depression, to her life as an artist and world traveler.
While I have a ways to go before it’s ready to go to print, I get goosebumps looking at the work. I am totally in love with it, not just because I love the author but because I think it’s really good.
Last year I left my corporate job with the intention of taking a year off to write. At the end of that year, my husband and I decided to extend my hiatus indefinitely, and each day I head to my writing area by about 8:00 a.m. and go to work. As with any job, some days I don’t want to do it. Some days the writing doesn’t go well, or I wonder if I will ever learn to write at all.
But today, when I look at the draft and see how far it’s come in a short time, I am filled with a satisfaction and joy that I find nowhere else. In these moments, just as after childbirth, I forget the pain and gaze with wonder at this new creation.
Writing can be isolating, lonely, and discouraging at times. We work hard, sometimes for years, and the work doesn’t always see the printed light of day. Even if it does, it may not sell. Still, I accept this life because of these magical moments, when everything comes together, and I feel like I know who I am.