Writing every day is mostly a habit. It’s one of those things that gets ingrained in muscle memory and makes you twitchy if it doesn’t happen. Habits are rituals, and rituals lead to cycles, and cycles are really just patterns with a fancy title. Patterns can be crafted to be their own, but it ends up affecting a hellavua lot of stuff in the long rung
Lately I’ve been obsessed with the play Into the Woods. It was something that I watched every year in language classes during finals week, but I never paid attention to it until the past few weeks. I remembered that there were witches and a bunch of fairy tale characters that got stuck with one another to get them out of their stories. Somewhere in the 500th repeat of the finale I realized that the play is just about shifting priorities through life. Wishes are those things we think about so often, yet it’s how we act that defines us as people.
For example, when I was a child I wished to be the mother of a little girl with all my heart. It was the only thing I wanted to be when I grew up. I ended up tacking on music teacher when prompted, but I never imagined being happily married or having a career, just that end game. Fast forward twenty years (!) and that’s what happened. I had forgotten that was the primary goal originally because new wishes came to the fore, like getting married and making a living at writing.
I’m living my one wish but it sidelined another wish I had in my adolescence – be an author. As the play reminds us, wishes come true but they often don’t come free. I’ve come out of my shell through meeting my daughter’s friends and their parents, but hanging out doesn’t further my aspirations for writing. I’m getting farther away from that end and must work on getting back to where I need to be.
But, to my knowledge, no one has ever said that the expense of a wish is another one. Rituals, balance, and execution all roll into it. It will be achievable, even if it’s just working through it here.
Chronicling my journey, starting now.