With the drama of all my recent posts about cancer and toxic air, it’s time for me to blog a happy tale. One that encourages you to pay attention to the whispers and follow where inspiration leads.
There is a fun, “spooky” story behind this picture of comp book and pen. If you know me at all, you know I like to write. If you know me really well, you know I have to write. Writing helps me maintain perspective, keep my sense of humor, gain clarity, and stay close to the guidance that gets me through this messy life with some degree of grace.
My favorite time to set pen in motion is in the morning during my quiet time, a daily ritual of contemplation, prayer, and reading that sets the tone for my day before the rest of the world does. It was in one of those quiet times that I was given the vision of two women sitting on a hill, silhouetted by a gorgeous sunset. I had the sense that one of the women was older and wiser, perhaps even an angel, when I heard her speak these words.
“Some might say this was a story told to me by a woman mad with grief, but to sit in her presence was compelling; the more she spoke, the more I was drawn in by a desire to believe that what she told me could be so.”
“Wow. What a great lead in for a movie,” I thought, as I took in the scene before me.
“Write that down,” something inside me prompted.
I did. Then I waited—and wondered. What could a grieving woman say that would make people question her sanity, and yet be compelled by desire to believe her? What did she know?
I waited some more. The scene faded. My body shivered. I tucked the torn scrap of paper into one of my journals and went about my day, knowing that inspiration and answers cannot be forced. Months later, in another quiet time, I came across the note.
“Time for what?” I asked
“Time to start writing the story.”
“You have the wrong gal. I don’t do fiction,” I replied.
“Just write what comes.”
I had a feeling that what was to come might be a lot, and unpredictable, so I bought three pink comp books and set one by the bed, one by my computer, and one where I have my quiet time—somewhat intimidated by what I was undertaking. As spring led to summer, most of what landed on the pages of the comp books felt fragmented and insignificant, more like writing warm ups for something bigger, like stretching and running in place before a good jog. (Not that I know anything about jogging, either.) Toward the end of that summer and heading into fall, a story line came into view—a rather convoluted story line that heeded no linear progression I could follow. I was in deep doo-doo.
I reminded my angel-muses, “You do know you are dealing with a novice here, right? I don’t do fiction.”
“It will speed things up if you commit to this,” they replied. I swear I felt them chuckle.
“Come on, guys. I’m really busy. I have all these masks I’m trying to finish for this art gala I agreed to be in. I’ve paid my fee. Ray, honey, tell them…”
“Fine. After the show, I’ll start the book. On Halloween, when the veil is thin… maybe you can help me with it, Ray.” (Don’t worry, they get my humor.)
October 31 rolled around. I didn’t start. That’s where the pen in the picture comes in. The afternoon of October 31, I went out to the mailbox. A bubble wrap envelope, addressed to Bernadette Smith c/o Enlightened Ink, was in it. (Enlightened Ink was our publishing company for which mail only went to a post office box, one I closed after Ray died. This was not a forwarded package.)
“How’d they get my address here?” I wondered, while opening the package. “Huh, a pen.” I reviewed the premium promo materials, set the pen in front of my computer, tossed the rest into the trash, and walked into the kitchen to make dinner.
It was later that evening that I was reminded of my commitment to start, and informed that I had just been gifted a pen with enlightened ink.
What were the odds that this pen would arrive at this address on October 31? Yeah. Ray and I had a chuckle; I was a bit slow in catching that one.
I started November 1. I used up all the ink in that pen, and then some. This is the thing about following inspiration; it taps you into something bigger. It hooks you up with our Creator with whom you get to do and experience things you didn’t know were possible.
I still don’t write fiction, but I do tell a helluva story in The Luminous Slide. Well, really, Sophia does… and Darrah… and Ian. I just take good notes.
In light of all the messy drama, of late, I wish to leave you with this take-away, an insight from Darrah, the young initiate in The Luminous Slide.
“Perhaps the only bad fiction in this world is holding on to a belief that antagonists get the last word in our stories,” she mused aloud. “What would life be like, understanding that we create adversaries with our own thoughts about them? And what if we could edit, slide to a life-side and return with a perspective that had the power to change our story line in the snap of a finger or flip of a coin?”
We are always telling ourselves stories. The difference between living a good story or bad fiction is found in the choices we make, each day. Pay attention to the inspiration that guides you to living your better story, and I will do the same.
This is where I love to hear about you following YOUR inspirations, dEAr hEArTs. Or coin flips and adversaries… or good writing pens. XO ❤ Much Love, Bernadette
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2 thoughts on “Living a Fairy Tale. Embracing the Slide.”
I loved this! I can’t believe how long it took me to read this blog yesterday, I never finished it. Your sharing again on FB reminded me to read it all the way through today. And it helped. I love the line about adversaries, they are anything really, and it’s up to us in how we frame it, to outgrow our past ways, and control our reality ultimately. I saw an IG post that just stuck out to me about creativity. It said, get all those bad ideas out, or something like that, eventually a good idea will come out. It made me think of morning pages. Thank you Bernadette for helping me pay attention to the inspiration that guides me, (now I have a new tablet, and your blog was right where I left it last night on its screen 😉 ) and God bless you for doing the same. 🙏 I will keep you updated on my not letting antagonists get the last word in my story, and here’s to making good choices. 🥂 TAM
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So great to read this, Teresa! I love how we can share the whispers, and I am grateful for the Divine collaboration that “joins us” on the path to our better stories as we meander home. Morning pages … YES … Ray gifted me with The Artist’s Way, years ago. Were it not for morning pages, I would not know myself to be the writer I am, today. ❤ pLeASe kEEp me posted on how you and iNSpiRaTioN are doing, Hon! Onward and upward we go. XOXO