Sunday, August 01, 2010

I'm back

We finally brought my son home from the NICU last Tuesday, 71 days after he was born. He's already 5 lbs 7 oz and doing great. Apart from the usual crying spells, he's an easygoing baby so far.

And now that JB and I have had nearly a week to get in a routine with him, I'm feeling more like myself...albeit a mommy version of myself. (Gratuitous baby pic at the bottom of this post.)

And now that I'm feeling more like myself, it's time I got back to writing. I haven't written much on my novel since I gave birth. Visiting the NICU three times a day for 10 weeks will suck your energy faster than anything. Now that we're finally home, JB and I are planning on a few dedicated novel-writing hours per week at least. (He may be a right-brained engineer, but he's got his own writerly streak.)

I used to think I might never be a truly "great" writer (whatever that is) because I'd never had any major hardships or pain in my life. It seemed to me that most of the great authors wrote from loss. But now that I've experienced loss, I don't know that it has or will necessarily make me a better writer. Maybe it's too recent. I've thought that writing through my loss might help me deal with it - and it has, in journal form - but I'm not sure if or when I'd be able to translate that kind of life-altering event into written expression.

What about you? Do you write from loss or hardship? Has it helped you? I'd love to know.

And now on to a brighter topic...

THIS is what I get to hang out with every day:


Anthony said...

Oh, how precious!

Loss and pain doesn't make you a better writer, but the reflection of the pain we feel can. The problem with self-reflection is there is a fine line between self-reflection and self-loathing (a topic I've blogged about before).

If you can avoid the self-loathing trap that gets so many, of course your writing will improve just as you've grown as a person.

I still cry, sometimes. The babies that were not meant to be. The mind plays tricks with grief. Somehow, I'm convinced they are the daughters, the sisters, the little girls everyone wanted to add to the family.

Does that make it worse, or better? I don't know. But thinking why I think that way is somewhat therapeutic.

If I hadn't commented before, I am sorry for your loss and overjoyed at your precious baby. That's a happy face he has right there, and right now, that's the best thing in the world, isn't it?

Julie Rodgers said...

I'm not a writer, but I know God's Word promises that every pain, every loss, works together for our good and makes us better people. God would not allow so deep a pain without opportunity for growth as a person, greater dependence on Him, and deeper compassion for others. I believe this loss will make you sweeter and stronger at the same time. Love you!!

Jill Wheeler said...

Anna, I'm so sorry for your loss. I had no idea.

Glynis said...

He is soooo gorgeous! Happy days for you all.

Loss is what got me writing poetry and it moved on from there.

Shannon said...

AC, he is so beautiful. I'm so happy for you both that he is finally home!

writtenwyrdd said...

Welcome home, adorable little baby!

I think that tragedy, depression, sadness, whathaveyou is not required experience if you want to write about it effectively. Any writer is (theoretically) capable of writing about anything, just like I can write a male pov character effectively when I've never been one.

That said, tragedy and any life experience that makes you grow and broadens the experiences upon which you can draw can enrich your writing. I know that the 20 years of experiences between when I started writing and when I got more serious about it made a large diffence.

Irene Latham said...

AC, what a sweet smile he has! I think it is loss/grief that most defines the human experience. So when you write from that place in the heart, it is likely your words will "connect" with others on their own journeys through the same emotional territory. Thanks for sharing the pic. xxoo

Buffy said...

He's just stunning. And how happy he looks.