Writer’s Doubt

Whenever I think of doubt in the context of writing, I’m reminded of one of my favorite quotes: “Writing is an act of faith, not a trick of grammar.” E. B. White, a celebrated author, certainly knew what he was talking about. Any writer who has ever been brave enough to construct a work of art out of words understands that it takes courage to believe in something unseen – to attempt to convey those thoughts to another human soul.

The most important time of my writing life was during college when I was bravely undertaking a degree in Creative Writing. College is already a time for soul-searching. Add to that a high degree of personal criticism and a need for the validation of praise from others, and you get a fair picture of my early days as an undergraduate writer.

I think the main issue with writing in such a volatile environment was just that I saw no way out of the cycle. I’d write something that I believed in with all my heart (no matter how trite or illiterate it sounds when I read the same piece today). Then I’d bare my soul in front of the audience I’d chosen only to find out that they didn’t even connect with my name on the author line, much less the witty title and open-ended final line.

It wasn’t until I started formulating ideas for my senior thesis that I had the epiphany that it wasn’t the readers that were the issue; it was me!

Somewhere along the road of writing form poems and short stories with first person protagonists I’d lost faith in the act. I still defined myself as “writer,” took notes at every craft lecture on prose writing, and dreamed about the day I’d finally get back to writing my fantasy epic (which I’d been writing since age 15). But I’d begun to see myself through other peoples’ eyes.

I really thought I had no sense of language and that the only characters I could write were sappy Hallmark-movie types with one dimensional conflicts. Worst of all, I began to see all writing as a trick, and I was never going to be good at it. I thought, might as well leave it to the geniuses – the Tolkiens and the Austens of our generation.

My thesis was different.

I was writing about a young woman very much like me, who grew up in my hometown of Alpharetta, GA. Even though I started out fearing the reactions of my mentors and peers, I ended up turning the story into a way to deal with my own fear: not having support from people I love to do the things I love most. The result was overwhelming support.

After that point, the writing was and still is for me, just as much as it is for my readers. If I don’t savor every sentence right down to the punctuation, how can I expect readers to respond?

I don’t have to be a prodigy or a clever wordsmith as long as I took the next step of faith into the unknown.

The path is narrow for those who truly want to be great writers. I still struggle with how I allow my readers’ opinions to taint my own view of my work. But I have made significant strides toward separating me from my text.

Every sentence I write now is a declaration of hope, and every word is a new beginning.

I’m participating in a writing contest called ‘Overcoming Writer’s Doubt’ held by Positive Writer. The whole idea behind it struck me as important: to remind writers that they are not alone and to encourage writers to work past doubt. Follow the link to read the other entries!


You Have What It Takes

If I were a super hero, I think I’d end up being called Super-Sensitive-Over-Achiever Woman. I can’t do anything without analyzing or at least weighing options, and when I do make rash decisions, I always replay the decision again later just in case I missed some minute detail. I also have no capacity for flying under the radar. No matter how hard my introverted self tries to be discreet, I’m just too much of a perfectionist to let certain things slide. In those cases, I usually find out who is my friend and who just puts up with me because they want something.

But there’s a problem: the Super-Sensitive-Over-Achiever Woman isn’t a thing. Instead, she’s too sensitivepushystrangegeeky, a know-it-all, or nothing, because people don’t take the time to understand. 

Think back with me for a moment about my list of heroes that I mentioned (quite a few weeks ago now, but check it out). None of the characters on that list was the super charismatic, out-going type. 

I think it is necessary to recognize that heroes are strong but they aren’t always perfect, and they aren’t always 100% out-going. The only hero who isn’t flawed is Jesus Christ, so let me clarify here: I’m talking about the portrayal of human or human-like (looking at you, Clark Kent) characters.

I’ve recently been pretty fascinated by the show LOST. I know, I’m super late. Everyone else who liked it is so over it they now hate it! Hear me out anyway. [SPOILERS!]

What most appealed to me about the show was that no single character was the stalwart hero. Yes, not even Jack Shepherd!! But each character has a moment of redemption, whether or not they choose to walk into it. (Why did you have to serve the Man in Black, Sayid?? You, too, Claire?? Charlie, at least we knew it wasn’t Penny’s boat.)

A lot of the backlash I’ve read about the show is that people didn’t think it was surprising that Jack saves the Island from the Man in Black or that Hurley ends up being the Protector of the Island. (Side note: without Kate and her shotgun, Jack would’ve died and the Man in Black would have won.)

For me, I love how these things happen. From the beginning, the writers establish that Jack is the hero, that we should root for him. But Jack has many dark struggles to face before the end of the series – obsession, self-esteem issues, jealousy, addiction, substance abuse, faith or lack thereof, even what it means to be a leader. Hurley also struggles with his self-image and making his opinions known without fear of judgement, fearing the label of “crazy” that has been placed on him by other people.

These are deeply human struggles, because sensitivity makes a person feel deeply, and that is NOT A BAD THING!

No struggle meant more to me than Jack’s inability to see his own worth. I find his struggle more relatable, if maybe not always more compelling, than the transformation of Sawyer into a caring human being. I liked that, too; I just kind of wish they hadn’t felt the need to put Kate and Sawyer in a cage to get there. Just a thought.

At the end of the day, what made the whole series work for me was the moment when we saw that Jacob left the message for Jack: 

You have what it takes.

How many times do I need to hear that a day? I should have it written on every blank page, so that even before I fill it, I know that I am not inadequate!

In the over-achiever’s world, you know you have abilities, and if you don’t, you’ll work harder than anyone else so you can get to the top. But the overly sensitive part of you is tearing you down left and right for not saying something when you’d had the chance to forgive a person or not doing everything you could to make yourself heard. Or even destroying you with guilt over how you couldn’t save the kid who willingly followed John Locke into the jungle. (Sorry, Boone!) Or how you left your sister on the Island. (You didn’t know about that one.)

That sort of sensitivity leads to obsession and often to depression – uncharted territory for those trying to tell “must-see” TV or bestselling stories. A hero with internal struggles has just as much going on as someone who’s fighting crime or running for President.

We each struggle under immense pressure before we learn to rise to the occasion. That is how life works. We aren’t born with foresight, so we can’t possibly know how all of our actions will affect our future.

Our culture is beginning to see that sensitivity is not a completely negative attribute (even in MEN!!) and that stories in which heroes have to overcome obstacles are necessary in a world as full of heartache as our own. LOST is just the first one I’ve come across. (BREAKING BAD seems a little too much into the anti-hero territory for me at this point. Maybe I’ll get into it. My empathetic self kinda thinks not.)

I still wish there were more such heroes that I could relate to! All the neurotic women are in comedy, and not all of them have the distinguished displeasure of over-thinking and being highly sensitive to her effect on others.

But I have hope now that someday, I will write a character like me, who struggles with her self-worth, and she will not have the same stigmas working against her.

And she will hear these words spoken over her life: You have what it takes.

Super Agents?

Photo by Justin Lubin - © 2013 American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. All rights reservedI don’t usually undertake reviews of TV that is still airing, but I’ve been watching Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. for several months and feel it’s necessary to share how I feel it’s improved over the past 3 episodes.

The first episode had a lot of pressure riding on it, and to a certain extent, it delivers. After the film The Avengers, it’s hard to imagine anything involving a mildly relevant premise not having significant hype. Once the show aired, I was pleasantly surprised by the humor and warmth Clark Gregg (Coulson) brings to the show. He has the weight required to anchor the episodes but let’s face it, he’s also one of the funniest deadpan comedians.

However, I was not enthusiastic about the neutral performances from the relatively green ensemble cast. I wondered what made Agent Ward so awesome when all we knew of him was what they told us. Writing 101 tells you that exposition kills, especially in TV. Fans of this kind of genre show either want the thrills and action adventure of the movies. Choose your poison, if you ask me. This show didn’t really seem to know if it was going to bend the expectations or if it was just going to take some time getting there, and it certainly didn’t have the instant chemistry that The Avengers has.

I also really just wanted to know why the name “FitzSimmons” was even a thing. I mean, scientists Fitz and Simmons got a couple name before we even knew them as separate people! You just can’t afford to do that when you’re establishing characters based on geeky super genius stereotypes. You need someone like Daniel Faraday on LOST who has the natural charm to pull off talking about sci-fi gadgets or time travel like he/she isn’t giving information overload. When Simmons delivers her expository dialogue, however, I often feel like the writers could do better on the jargon. They’re pretty inconsistent in how they write “intelligent” explanations. They should also remind people more often how cool Fitz can be (as evidenced in the episode called “The Hub.”) and give Simmons the same chance to shine on her own!

Side note: I am also very pleased to see Lauren LeFranc and Rafe Judkins as writers and not just producers, as they created some of the most memorable moments on the awesome show Chuck

In any case, I think what is truly remarkable is how much they have turned this show around since the episode which aired right before their hiatus. It was becoming a little bit old to hear Coulson constantly saying that Tahiti is a “magical place,” and finally the viewers get to understand that S.H.I.E.L.D. has been keeping the truth from Coulson: he didn’t just die; they forced him back to life and took the memory of it from him. Why? That is still the question. In addition to: who is the Clairvoyant? It better be Skye’s mom/pop, or let me tell you something, these writers are just the biggest teases in TV!

Finding out something tangible about Skye’s past probably should have happened five episodes ago, but I won’t complain. Just like with Coulson’s mysterious resurrection, there are some things that you can tease and others you really just need to give partial information about so at least your viewers can feel how high the stakes are.

Something you can always say about Marvel is that they love sticking their characters into unlikely circumstances to see if they will rise to the challenge. So far, we have only just started to get into the real drama on this show, and I really hope that the network will give them more than just this one season. I think this show has the makings of something really special given the time to progress.

{Photo by Justin Lubin – © 2013 American Broadcasting Companies, Inc. All rights reserved.}

A New Year’s Flashback

2013 was a year full of firsts and lasts: I graduated from college, got my first post-grad job (an internship, but who’s keeping track?), and sent in my first graduate school application.

I have thought of countless things to say about the New Year, but instead of just commenting on the things I hope for this year – and there are many – I want to share with you something I prayed on this day one year ago.

Father, I am a fool for letting Your name go to waste in my heart. I’ve been letting my fear of failure hinder my life to the point where I can’t tell when I’m being wise and when I’m just making up excuses. I pray that Your Spirit would cut through the darkness and the doubt so that I wouldn’t fear the world for its effect on me and that I wouldn’t fear my own decisions. May I find strength in You alone, in Your Word, and in Your witness within my heart. I go nowhere alone because You are in my heart. Be with my family, as we’re constantly on the edge of a new transition. I praise Your holy name above all others. I’ve seen You at work in the lives of Your people, and more than all else, You alone have the authority to give and to take away. May I not shy from that reality, Lord, or from Your ultimate power. If I believe in Your name, then I believe You will do as You’ve promised. May I no longer be in bondage to my flesh, since Jesus has defeated death! In His holy name I ask these things. Amen.

This prayer still feels as fresh as if I had written it today, and with all of my heart, I want for you readers to embrace the future without fear. The only things we carry from our past are the lessons we’ve learned; we don’t need to carry the baggage, too.

I don’t know where you all are in your lives, but I know that we’re all looking down the barrel of a new year. Some people are excited by the prospect of the new beginning, while others are having trouble leaving last year in the past. But I hope that this prayer can be yours, as well as mine.

I want to leave you with this song, which has meant a lot to me in the past year of my life.

Three Year End Films That Captured My Imagination

One of the best parts of the end of the year is that the film industry pulls out all the plugs to bring some really diverse films. So to give you a taste of just how diverse I am in my film taste, I thought I’d write a sort of film review mash up and discuss all 3 things in one post! Caution: this is full of spoilers and raw opinions! 


It’s been just long enough since the first film for Jennifer Lawrence to transform from a relatively unknown talent to a superstar with an Oscar win. Still, the role of Katniss Everdeen fits her like a glove in the first film and now again sequel.

As a fan of the books, I was surprised that even while adding to the plot, Francis Lawrance and the team have really captured the tone and intensity of the novel. This film was visually more engaging than I could have imagined. It has been a while since I first read the book, so I admittedly didn’t remember all the plot points, but the way I imagined the arena was pretty much just a vision if what they put on film. That rarely ever happens! To top it off, the two crucial new characters of Finnick and Joanna were just as well-suited as the rest of the cast. Jena Malone shines despite her character’s rough edges. And Sam Claflin running through the trees looking for Annie was almost too much. Spot on.  

The noticable change in style between this film and its predecessor mostly has to do with the decrease in handheld shaky cameras and in jump cuts. I think the fact that the film was also partially in IMAX also adds to the new visual scope. In addition, the costumes were each a character, as they ought to be when juxtaposing the glitz and plastic culture of the Capitol with the reality of more senseless killing. Why did this film end? At least it captured the same cliffhanger as the book.  


This film received a lot of backlash up front just because of the fact that audiences and Tolkien fans knew that this installment would naturally include less of the book that the first film. But despite myself, I thought that the diversions from the book were appropriately cinematic. The book is made up of episodes which pile up into an eventual climax, not really great for structuring one film, much less 3 of them! In that sense, I see why the film makers felt the need to separate the dwarves along their journey and to dramatize thE events still to come. 

And also, Tauriel is not in the book. I didn’t mind! (I think this is the part where I should tell you that I have a huge HUGE obsession with THE LORD OF THE RINGS. However, that has grown and developed with me over the years. Tolkien is to my writing what Jackson is to my love of films; I am a writer and a cinephile because of their work!) Even though I’m mildly creeped out by the idea that Legolas and Kili needed a love interest in anyone’s mind, I really value the decision that Jackson, Walsh, and Boyens made to include a prominent female character in this film. An elf was totally the way to go, too, because we need the tension between elves and dwarves to carry into the final act of the story.

As far as some of the other stuff added, like Gandalf being captured at Dol Guldur, get back to me next year after I’ve seen the last film. I will reserve the ultimate judgment until then. 

The other stand out is the dragon SMAUG who is every bit as menacing in the film as he is in the book. I am very pleased that he will carry into the last film. His presence and weight simply reinforce how awesome the character of Bilbo is! I mean, who would be brave enough to attack giant spiders with a little blade like Sting? And then try to talk your way out of being burned alive by a dragon? For real. 

Like with CATCHING FIRE, I wasn’t finished when the movie ended!


This film has been on my radar for months because of Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks. For real, could you have asked for a better odd couple than these two seasoned actors? I also really like the whole meta idea that Thompson is a writer, although it’s difficult to imagine anyone as surly and difficult to please as P.L. Travers, so the comparison between her and her character ends there. 

The cinematography and the interplay of Travers’s childhood in Australia with the present action are genius. I think the casting of Colin Farrell as Travers Goff, the author’s father, was also inspired. His combination of childish abandon and heart-breaking pain greatly informs how the audience experiences the author’s fierce protection of her creative property in the main story. Also, he had great chemistry with the young actress who plays Helen Goff as a child. 

Hanks and Thompson are phenomenal, but I must say that the scenes between Thompson and Paul Giamatti, who plays her driver, are the most outstanding. I can’t even properly summarize their relationship without belittling the subtlety. There is almost warmth in how she berates and abuses him for the first half of the film just because of Giamatti’s simple optimism in the face of it. 

I think this film is on its way to becoming just as much of a classic as MARY POPPINS herself. I also hope for a few awards to go the way of this film, despite some stiff competition. 

Experience Love

I’ve been feeling a little convicted about my negative outlook on life. Thinking over the things I have already posted on this blog, I think it’s pretty incredible that I’ve actually said anything at all that was self-affirming or uplifting to you as readers. Maybe I should read this blog more often…

The truth is that I’ve been quite introspective since leaving the bubble of college life. It’s easy to think the whole rest of your life is going to go skyrocketing faster than you can say, “Wait for me!” The idealist in me still says that someday my life really is going to take off that quickly, even if that day isn’t tomorrow. Really, I just need to come to terms with “contentment” and not “settling” for what seems attainable.

I’ve been doing a study called Experiencing God by Henry Blackaby. If you haven’t heard of it, you can easily hit up Google, but I’d rather you hear about it from someone who’s reading/digesting it now: it is one of the most challenging and edifying way to study the Bible you’ll find out there.

You wanna know it’s secret? It focuses on how God wants to know us by showing His love and by speaking through His Word.

After five weeks of pouring over countless examples of God’s intimate relationships with people (like how God called Moses, a man who is a self-diagnosed stutterer and who not too keen on speaking to crowds, to not only lead Israel out of Egypt but also to write down the 10 Commandments), I realized that I’ve been ignoring what relating to God looks like in my life for far too long!

More importantly, I’ve had a few things wrong from the beginning. For example, when God says He loves me, He means it. Why else would Jesus lay down His divine place to die for me? Little old me, the whiner who over-analyzes everything. And when He says He has plans for me and that everything (even the bad, ugly things) are part of His love, He also means what He says. {Jeremiah 29:11 & Romans 8:28}

Part of this negativity is that I haven’t even thought about the purpose God gave me when He made me. I have believed all my life that God always calls His people to do the most difficult things in the world and that even if you knew what you were supposed to do. From a human stand point, that is true.

But from the point of view of someone who is in love with God, you would do anything to please Him because you trust that He will never let you down.

All this time, I’ve been obsessing over trying to find out what God’s will is and then showing my perception of it to Him like we all did as kids when we displayed our finger paint and scribble-art to Mom, Dad, Grandma, and whoever else wanted to see. But instead of deciphering the mysteries of the universe, I ought to focus on what I understand: God’s unending love. Sharing His love with others is the foundation of His will for me.

If I ain’t doing that, I ain’t living.


I heard about this book Creativity: Flow and the Psychology of Discovery and Invention by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in which the author has analyzed the process of creation and what constitutes the creative mind using 100 interviews with successful geniuses of creativity.

In light of this interesting study (which I haven’t read beyond a summary), I have been wondering what I think defines creativity. Is it the genius inside a person, that unknown and unteachable force, that makes a person innovative and productive? Is it a drive toward excellence that makes a person create?

The first thing that comes to mind when I hear the word “creativity” is a mound of clay. There’s nothing quite as inspirational to me as sculpting – whether that’s with clay or steel or plastic. To create something from nothing is the highest function of our human spirits; we desire to leave our own imprint on the tangible world. A potter working from clay seems to be the most concrete representation of that act.

I thought since I’m in such a philosophical mood, I’d share with you a few amusing quotes that are sure to help you writers get in the spirit of genius.


Need a Hero?

So I promised to blog more often, and here’s my latest attempt to do so (at least a month over due).

The reason I’m writing now is because I’ve been writing a lot. Just not on the internet.

For more years than I can count (okay, let’s just say six years because it’s a good number), I’ve been writing a very long, hopefully epic novel. I’ve already surpassed my own expectations in lasting this long, but the real surprise is that I’m on about the third draft of the first half of the novel. That’s right. I’ve revised before I even finished one draft.

Here’s my issue. I’m trying to do justice to characters who are larger than life. Without going into too many specifics, as I hope never to make this blog my writer’s share-time where you all read my work and potentially plagiarize my genius, the novel focuses on the lives of two characters who each find themselves thrust into the larger world.

Of course, thematically we could say I’m dealing with coming of age, finding one’s destiny, saving the world from evil and all the things one desires from an epic. But that would be selling my incomplete effort short before I’ve even gotten to my climax! I’d rather just say that I want to deal with the idea of choices. Our choices influence the world around us, though not everyone gets to be president or queen or ruler of the known universe.

In light of my fascination with cause and effect, I thought I’d take the time to share with you some characters (dare I call them heroes?) whose battle with choices have inspired me in recent years.

1. Frodo Baggins: Any LOTR fan would tell you their opinion on this lovable hobbit. Frodo’s decision to take the One Ring to Mordor gives me chills no matter how many times I read the books. (Yes, I’ve read them more than once!) Even though he’s never so much as gone farther from home than the next region of the Shire, his sense of the greater danger of the world around him leads him to a crossroad at which he decides to risk everything to save what he loves most. This decision drives the plot of the novels. Sure, Aragorn makes a lot of heroic calls in battle, but Frodo, the little introverted, proper hobbit, is the one who left all that behind to fulfill a task he didn’t really understand when he said yes to it.

2. Katniss Everdeen: If you haven’t read Suzanne Collins’s series, once again, you’ve missed out. Katniss is one of the most disturbed and relatable heroes of YA lit because she is more than just a reluctant hero. She literally becomes the face of a broken people, just for being her usual take-no-nonsense self. The choice that gets me, though, is unfortunately a spoiler. So please, please read Mockingjay. In my eyes, Katniss isn’t a hero until she risks everything and knows it.

3. Ender Wiggin: So I’m a broken record. This young boy is one of the most disturbed and relatable heroes of YA lit. It isn’t his shrewd battle sense or his tactical skills that makes him a hero. He’s a hero because he cares. It is his greatest strength, and it is exactly what all the generals behind him can’t manufacture. He sees his enemy with even greater love than he shows himself; you can’t ask for a more heroic character. 

4. Esther: Yes, the Esther from the Bible. I find her decision to risk her own life and well-being to speak to the king on behalf of every Jew in Persia is remarkable. I desire to have that kind of guts. 

5. Every lead character on LOST: Okay, this one is decidedly less literary. But one thing I admired from the very beginning of this polarizing series is that every character had his/her own flaws. The one thing they had in common was that they’d made choices that led them there. Nobody was the old “fortune’s fool.” By the end of the show, you get to see who learned from those choices and desired to break free from their past mistakes. (Again, I’m not a fan of spoilers.)

These are just some heroes whose choices inspire me. In my writing, my mission is always to push my characters to the brink of their comfort and experience, because those are the moments in which one individual’s choices can change the world.

A Lifelong Fight for Hope

Anyone who knows me will tell you I like to have a sunny outlook on circumstances. You ask me how my day is going, chances are I’ll tell you it’s great, even if I spilled hot cocoa on my favorite jeans and showed up an hour late for work.

However, behind that exterior of sunshine is a heart that seems conditioned to one response: worry.

If I were talking about just the kind of anxiety you might encounter when flying on an airplane for the first time, I might tell myself that it’s only natural. Unfortunately, I’m talking about the kind of anxiety that wakes you up at 3 AM thinking you heard your alarm going off.

So I read all those comments about changing in funding and federal grants, even cutbacks in the National Endowment for the Arts, and I think PANIC.

For someone who hopes to pursue advanced education, this is bad news.

Why couldn’t this be happening to some other field?

Learning is important, people!

As soon as I stop listening to the voice of unbridled terror, I realize that my view on most things is very selfish.

It is the luxury of Western culture to consider the movement of the economy or the guarantee of my “perfect job” to be more important than the fact that I have never gone without food, water, shelter, or the love and support of community.

I believe that one of these days I will discover that panic isn’t enough. It leaves a person cold, lonely, and dissatisfied.

Instead, I’d like to actually trust in that hope that makes me tell you I’m having a great day. Despite the fact that life might not always go how I thought they would.

And maybe my dream of being a French professor, just like my hopes of becoming a published writer, will one day seem like a distant memory…

But I prefer to fight against that panic every moment of every day, knowing that my own fear is more of my enemy than the economy or even the end of the world.

Hello, Present

Like many recent college graduates, I’ve found myself getting super discouraged lately. For the past few weeks, my life has consisted of lounging in my PJ’s, watching TV, and a whole lot of binge reading.

Ok, it’s an introvert’s heaven… But there’s been this unbearable itch in me to get something started, some sort of structure to keep the monotony at bay.

And one question is always there: when will life just get started?

I’ve always imagined myself doing one thing: being a published writer. I’ll admit, that’s an exaggeration. There was a time when I wanted to be a ballerina, which led into my dream of becoming best friends with Aladdin [and other various Disney characters].

I read voraciously and scribbled stories in journals for as long as I can remember. I still own most of them but secretly wish I had the nerve to burn the evidence. Those first few stories really were atrocious; I promise.

In college, I did the best thing anyone could do. I attended a liberal arts college. I studied French and English, which was a natural fit considering how much I always excelled in those areas.

Then I started to figure out what I wanted my future to look like.

I imagine myself ten years from now: sitting on the couch, writing stories no one ever reads and watching the same old TV shows over and over and over…

It looked, and some days still does look, like a big fat vortex of nothing.

In this day and age, entry-level jobs are scarce, and finding a job is terrifying when you’ve never worked 9 to 5 and all you know are your favorite song lyrics or quotes from The Avengers.

We’re the generation who’s been told our whole lives that we can do anything we put our minds to. Now we’re so caught up in fast-paced living that waiting on the dream to become a reality is often so excruciating in its speed that we can’t bear to put up with it anymore.

I fear that I’m sounding melodramatic, but I can’t stress this enough. It’s never too late to make a step toward some concrete goal, even if it takes the form of an internship, pushing around mail, or just a volunteer job.

Someday, I’ll be published. I know that dream isn’t going anywhere fast. But right now, I’m thankful. I have somewhere to go, something to remind me that life won’t pass me by unless I let it.