This last week was really busy. Not only with balancing kids and packing lunches and taking them to school and day care, but teaching and deciding what to teach and writing, and in between all of that, I’d run to the studio and narrate. An audio book generally takes three full days to record. I did it over 4 days, with three hours on Tuesday and Thursday, an afternoon on Wednesday and then all day Friday.
I love narrating. I love slipping inside a novel and living as the characters for a while. I try to bring the words to life. It’s an emotional and intellectual exercise and I try to do a great job. Sometimes I do. Sometimes I don’t. Some people love the sound of my voice; some people can’t stand it.
At any rate, this was a hard read because it was a collection of nonfiction stories based around the idea of Thinking Positive. The stories were really short so it was hard to get lost in them, and there weren’t any characters or development. Now, I did enjoy the stories, but I think I’m a fiction girl at heart.
Some of the stories were really hard to read. I mean emotionally. People who’ve been through horrible illnesses and loss of loved ones and tragedies…but somehow not only survived but found some kind of meaning through difficulty. That sounds great but it was sort of like “I lost my leg to gangrene, and then my other leg, and then I lost my ability to chew…but I discovered that I’m amazing at making shadow puppets. If it hadn’t been for the loss of my legs and needing to get my mind off chewing, I’d never have discovered my power to create a realistic woodchuck with just my hands and the use of light.”
Seriously. It was grueling after awhile.
But, I’m determined to Think Positive, so I decided that what I’d take from this was a simple question: “Am I living the life I want?” Not the life I’m destined for, not the perfect life, but am I living the life I want. When I was with my husband, I asked myself this question and I made gigantic changes. While living in an apartment, I asked myself this question and decided that the life I wanted involved a home and stability for my kids. When I was in an unhealthy relationship, I asked myself this question and it allowed me to make changes again to keep myself on track.
This weekend, I was mowing the lawn and listening to my iPod. I think it was “Glee” actually. It was cool out but every now and then the sun sent down warmth. I stopped for a minute and looked at my house and the life I’ve created for my kids and me. It’s not perfect. But is this the life I want?
Without question, that little voice in me said: “You bet, mutherfucka!”
Okay, my inner voice didn’t swear. I’m trying to make her sound cooler than she really is. So, when I asked, “Am I living the life I want?” my answer was simple: “Yes”.
Thank god I didn’t need to lose any limbs to finally figure that out.