I am pleased and proud to be featured in the International Women's Writing Guild Annual End of the Year Newsletter for my response to a "Between the Lines" prompt.
The New Me
by Marie Drake
This year has been strange, indeed. The Corona Virus upset many things. My husband faced unemployment for six months, waiting to see if his company would reopen. It did not. He’d transported people with disabilities, and those people were no longer able to travel, meet, or gather. The uncertainty led to a job search; finding work in his field that paid similar to what he’d previously earned proved a difficult task, but we didn’t want to wait until the unemployment benefits ran out to decide what we’d do. He gained employment with a different company that doesn’t involve the transportation of people but products. It involves travel, and so there is an adjustment I must make, we must make together.
My husband and I have a blended family; we each have two children, and the last one living with us happens to be my youngest son. He recently procured a job on a path to his career, a grown-up job with benefits. Hooray. However, the company is farther from home than he wants to commute, so he decided to rent an apartment near work. He’s ventured from home to live in college dorms, but there’s a finality to this move. It’s the end of something. I devoted most of my life to my children. Mom: That was my title, my badge of honor. Many mothers have tread these heart-breaking waters before me and more will struggle through those waves after I have steadied myself on the shore, I know.
I’ve written several books, and there has always been a question in the back of my mind: If I had more time to devote to my writing, would I achieve more success? My quiet house beckons me to write something, anything. But, what if I write more now and I find no further accolades? Will the new me be enough? Will I enjoy writing if nobody notices? Will I need to search for fulfillment elsewhere? I must cast aside fear, anxiety, and self-doubt. I have to embrace the opportunity to concentrate on my writing. I should give myself as much encouragement as I’ve showered on my husband and my children. Be braver than I’ve previously been. Stand taller, accept recognition, don’t be afraid to state my accomplishments. I can be proud of myself. I must only be enough for me.
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