Welcome! It was just about a year ago when I made the fateful but brave decision that something I had written was worthy of printing.
I felt I’d had such a massive light bulb moment that NOT printing was not an option at all! Bravery had not been in my vocabulary for sometime though and faith had long exited my sightline.
“The Princess and The Whale” has grown into something way bigger than I ever anticipated.
The story was originally written for my oldest Hannah in 2004. When it turned up again in Jan 2016, it was also a message for me and for my life.
It’s also for anyone else who has ever been held hostage by their own fear.
Or for those drowning in the “I’m not enough” mantra that rings in our heads in the voices of those who may have loved us but never loved us well.
Three stories that I had written years ago and had gone missing for one reason or another showed up in my inbox after 10 years of never even being thought about.
I printed off the first one, “The Princess and The Whale”, and sat in my office chair to read it and while I did, I had this sense of awe. That thing that happens when you read something that has multi-layered meanings for you and you sense the magic of the timing of its re-arrival in your life.
It’s difficult to fully describe the moment when I leaned back in my chair and glanced up from the last scene to look at the painting I did in July of 2015.
I was so caught off guard at the symmetry of the story and painting and the space of 12 years colliding.
The tears that flowed in that particular moment is probably one of the most heartfelt spiritual moments I’ve ever had.
For me that moment was a God thing. Or a Universe thing. I tend to like the word Universe these days – it feels bigger somehow.
Life in the previous two years had seen some pretty tough moments.
Change is hard for most people I think, and I think for me it equally inspires and terrifies. It usually means that the old way of life is heading out the door.
While change may be a good thing, the old way can be pretty damn comfortable too. The old way can be like an tattered sweater that cozily keeps you warm.
There was a huge part of me that wanted to cling to my old sweater and put up a temper tantrum like I did when my mom threw away an old favourite flowered pillow when I was small. I still remember that day like it was yesterday; it was a huge loss.
The young me didn’t understand the emotions at the time but I can still recall the way that pillow felt and smelled and the comfort it brought me in the dark of night.
But now, all these years later I can see the wisdom in letting go of that pillow and why my mother probably felt it was necessary.
The pillow was old and thread bare. Patched a few times. It was probably a hairs breath away from falling completely apart. The phrase “loved it to death” comes to mind!
It was probably better to let go of it while it was still in one piece rather than letting me wake up one morning to find it shredded into pieces around me.
This would have caused me to carry the childish guilt of being the one responsible for its final demise.
Life does that though, don’t you think? It let’s you move through the world all comfortable for a while.
But when it’s no longer optimal for you, it sends something along to shake life up.
It brings the next lesson, that thing that redirects you down a path you may never have planned and seen coming.
Or maybe it was just something you had quietly dreamed about long enough that the Universe felt it was time to send it down the pipe.
So there I was in my office chair with this story in my hand and my painting on the wall. And this thought in my head that was gaining an electrical charge and a life of its own.
Like Princess Hannah, I was about to take a very huge first step that had the potential to bring me home. In my case, it’s taught me who I really am.
I could have put the story down and never thought about it again. I could have laughed and thought it was just a coincidence.
Worse, I could have shrugged and doubted myself and my ability to turn that moment into a actual book.
But that’s not me! I’d already done a few things that were steps of bravery into unknown spaces.
I travelled across the world to Australia with my girls and went to France on my own. I embraced being single.
A single step of bravery can change your perspective on everything.
If you can take a single step of bravery in one area, I guarantee you will build brave muscle in other areas too.
Here I sit a year later, with about 2600 copies of “The Princess and The Whale” in my basement.
I fully know in the depth of my bones that it has the magic in it to change lives. If only because it has certainly changed mine and I am just getting started!
A moment of bravery changes everything. This was mine.
Have you seen how “The Princess and The Whale” came to be published? It’s a pretty cool story in itself! Watch it from here!
Don’t have your own copy of “The Princess and The Whale” yet? Check it out here!