Friday, September 2, 2011

In the Beginning . . . Again

I couldn’t sleep. For the voices in my head. One voice really. One voice plus two words equal insomnia.
            “Start over.”
            I clenched my teeth. “No.”
            “Start over.”
            I set my face like flint. “I won’t do it.”
            I made a head sandwich with two pillows. Silence. At last. I removed the top one.
            I whimpered. “Are you kidding me? You seriously want me to flush 92,000 plus words? I’d rather—“
            “You’d rather what? Write less than your best? “
            I applied the pillow to my face again. Huffed. It’s right. He is. The voice. I’d heard it before. More than once. Several times actually. For what, one year? Maybe two? Always stuck my pointer fingers in my ears. Na-na-na-nah. Unstopped them. Is it gone yet?  Good.
            I lifted the pillow a half inch. To breathe. But I love the part where . . . And how I wrote that one scene . . .
            The voice found me. Inside my down-alternative hiding place.
            “You’re better now. Different. I’m doing a new thing. Trust me.”
            I slipped my hand under the top pillow. Wiped my nose with my wrist. Mouthed one word--how?
            “What did you tell that young man last week? The missionary?”
            I scrolled through memories. Found that one. Spoke inside my mind. How is a faithless question.
            “What are you afraid of, really?”
            I tossed the pillow to the floor. Rolled onto my side.
            “I’m scared it’ll take years. That I’ll be old before it’s finished.”
            I pictured Sarah, Abraham’s wife. Her papery, age-spotted arms cradled a chubby-faced baby boy. She’s too old to—
            “Let me ask you this. Would you rather your hands be empty? Do you want a babe that ceases to breathe in its second month?”
            I shook my head. Pressed my knuckles into my eyes to stop the burn.
            “No, sir. It’s just . . . It’s so big. Huge really. I’m—“
            “My grace is . . .” The voice paused.
            I opened my eyes. Waited for him to finish.  Oh, he wants me to say the rest.
            I listened to my quivery exhale. Tried to find something to focus on in the darkness.
            “Sufficient. Your grace is sufficient. ‘Cause your power’s made perfect . . . in weakness.”
            A breeze blew across the bed. Even though no window was open.
            “Get some rest, beloved. Tomorrow’s a big day. The day you’ll—“
            I shivered. Pulled the covers under my chin.
            “I know. The day I’ll start over.”


Mary Connealy said...

Hey, girl. It worked. Live link, yay!

Ivy said...

The humbling power of God. Just think of the first draft as practice. Now you're on first string. Time to start running for that touchdown!

Good luck!


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