Fresh FIction Box Not To Miss

Jane Porter | A Thing Called Grace

October 17, 2007

I’m a hard worker, a good mom, a loyal friend, and sometimes a pretty decent writer, but that doesn’t mean everything goes smoothly. In fact, sometimes it means nothing goes smoothly and life becomes what life generally is: one endless roller coaster of highs, low, and loop de loos.

I’ve been most this year on the roller coaster and the past six months have pretty much been loops and swoops and hair curling drops that put your stomach up in your mouth and leaves it there.

Like everyone else, I’ve had sick family members and lost family members and had financial worries and child worries and work worries but what the heck, we can’t cry (too much), we just have to keep going. And that’s what I’ve been doing. Putting one foot in front of the other as I finish one book and begin to hit the road and promote another. My kids hate me being gone. I’m a single mom and the boys’ dad has been in the hospital since April. They don’t want to be left with sitters. I don’t blame them for not wanting to be left with sitters but sometimes we do what we don’t want to have to do.

However, last week, one day into my eight day California book tour I lost my childcare, a girl I’d interviewed in July and started training in August. She was supposed to be my childcare solution, not my childcare nightmare. Unfortunately it didn’t work out that way. And so one day into my book tour—and with nearly 6 weeks of travel ahead of me—I began to pitch hit: calling anyone and everyone to help me get through the California leg of the book tour at least. My former sitters and girl friends responded. Sure, my kids were shuffled and bounced around like numbered balls in Bingo, but they were safe and with someone who cared.

I’m stuck at the airport right now in Dallas unable to get home. I’m hoping to go standby on a flight later today. My kids need to see me. I need to see them. But I’m really, incredibly calm. I’m really, incredibly happy. I feel…lucky.

I feel blessed.

I don’t know why I feel so calm when so many things aren’t lining up straight. But maybe that’s the lesson I’m learning right now. Maybe I’m supposed to learn that life isn’t about control, and making all the little ducks line up in a tidy row, but rather, keeping the little ducks floating and swimming and alive.

Maybe it’s enough that I’m grateful to be who I am, and the mother of my boys, and blessed with such good friends, family, readers and fans. Maybe it’s enough to just paddle, paddle and paddle and enjoy the swim.

So that’s where I am. Sitting at DFW, waiting for a plane to arrive, and understanding grace. I don’t have to do it all. I don’t have to be all that. I just have to live and swim and love the other ducks.

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