Living The Dream

            I’ve
gone from silent and confused going along for the ride. Then to the life of a
party I don’t want to end. I found a door open and I bolted through to build
something. Then I found myself burned out and bitter and, worst of all,
believing I was entitled. Then I found myself both broken and blessed.
            Leading
me to this place on the page. An endless sea of white in front of me full of
question marks and commas and exclamation points.
            It’s
funny to live the dream I’ve wanted to since I was in third grade. The sights
look different than I thought they’d be. The feelings, however, sometimes
linger on. The feelings of uncertainty and restfulness and complete terror.
            Yet
the words have remained at my side.
            Weeks
sometimes pass. Isolated weeks compressed with projects. Lost in little worlds
of my own making. Breathers come and beautiful people come across my path. But
I always go back to that place. The one where it’s time to work with the words
again. I wanted to say “wrestle” but I don’t do that. Words are my friends and
I borrow them. I want them to like me. I want them to treat me kindly.
            Occasionally,
they’re good to me.  
            The
life I couldn’t control as a youth grew to be one I thought I could control.
But in both cases, God wanted me to understand something. Nobody controls it
except Him. Nobody is the author of their own life except Him.
            I’m
stubborn and hard-headed and sometimes I’ve simply put on the noise-canceling
headphones of life and kept running. But God likes unplugging them or letting the
battery in them die or allowing me to keep running right into a brick wall.
            I’m
attempting to let Him control things. Not just the writing but everything. It’s
a long To-Do list that I haven’t even finished. I never get around to finishing
it, either.
            Thankfully,
God is patient and loving.
            And
thankfully, He keeps letting me do this writing thing.
            I
say something occasionally and sincerely mean it. I simply want to keep doing
this writing thing and take care of my family. And I want to do so without killing
myself.
            So
far, so good.
            Well,
sometimes the good is average, but that’s okay.
            The
kid who wanted to do it and then actually started to do it and then got into this
in order to do it is DOING IT. Morning, noon, and night. He’s writing.
            What
a privilege.
            Last
week several unexpected projects came my way. Possibilities of picking up some
words and working with them. Each one different, each one interesting, each one
certainly something I could have never predicted.
            I
didn’t do this for fame and certainly not for fortune. Never.
            I’ve
wanted to do this because of the way I’m wired. Fortunately, I’ve learned and I
keep learning.
            I’ve
received praise along the way.
            I’ve
also seen doors continue to open.
            I
don’t want to be cynical and I don’t ever want to grow entitled again.
            I
don’t want to battle with the craft. I want to respect it and have some fun
with it. I want to keep trying, keep working, keep providing for my family,
keep dreaming, keep plugging away.
            And
then I want to wake up one day and finish my own To Kill A Mockingbird.
            It’s
as lofty of a dream as the one that third grader living in Germany had. I won’t
know or believe it happened the same way I don’t feel I’m living the dream.
            But
Travis—you are living the dream.
            Doing
the thing you were born to do. Day after day after day.
            Thank
you, God. 

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