Rejection letters used to frazzle me. Probably because I was full of hope, which is a terrible, terrible state to be in (trust me). Hope is a farce – a real sham of a way to be. When I hear the word “hope,” a chill runs through my spine like it did when my mom told me she found a black widow spider in her kitchen. Hope does not belong in our thoughts no more than a black widow spider belongs in a kitchen. I do not engage with hope anymore than I suit myself up in fear. It’s the same thing. HOPE = FEAR. Think about it real hard.
If I am living in a state of hope, I am not in acceptance of ‘what is,’ nor am I living in the solution of whatever problem I am hoping doesn’t linger. It’s one thing to hope dark chocolate is hidden inside an incoming grocery bag; its another thing to hope someone gets better when they are very ill. I must trust that whatever is occurring is for the well-being of everyone involved, and know I you can handle whatever comes your way. A higher purpose is always at work even when circumstances seem futile. When people receive a message of “hope’ it is because they are currently residing in a state of fear. This hope brings them light, of course, but they have not yet walked through the fear. We all do this. I’m not immune. I’m just clarifying how hope is a fear based emotion, and I try to be aware of it when it comes up for me.
Standing in the light of acceptance (k-sera-sera) is a place where you will not be crushed when a literary agent sends you an informal letter informing you that your hard work wasn’t worth their time. I wasn’t crushed this time around because there is a whole wide world of opportunities simply awaiting my awareness. When I got the letter on Saturday, nothing even moved inside of me. I was perfectly ok about it and really enjoyed the remainder of my day. “Ok, no problem Universe. Let’s keep moving, shall we?” I planted some tomatoes and basil and enjoyed the sunlight. It was a perfectly lovely day. No skin off my back (progress).
The same book that I sent to the literary agent was sent to my friend in prison who has been struggling with his time in there. I self-published the book in paperback, so it was easy to mail it off from Amazon. We’ve been down similar paths and he’s been part of my life since we were children. Parts of his life are in my book and it was important to me that he got a chance to read it, but I knew that he too, could easily reject it. We’ve had our differences. And if he rejected it, perhaps someone else in prison would pick it up and get something out of it, but if not… oh well. It’s a book about addiction and recovery – my life story with answers to very large questions that so many of us ask when we are lost.
I received a thick letter yesterday from my friend in prison. He read the book with his cellmate, and now the other guys in there are passing it around and ingesting it like a pack of cigarettes! I was so touched by his letter which praised me for my hard work. He was moved emotionally and the book has given him a bit of popularity with the men. I had no idea the book would have this effect. I merely sent it to give him something to read and trusted that it would sooth him momentarily. It had more of an effect than I ever expected. His letter went on and on. I would take his letter any day over a letter from an interested publisher. He and his cellmates are real live people who relate to me, and who felt the book in a way that an agency could not. His letter moved me, reminding me that nothing is a dead end. I wrote the book knowing that it needed to be written. It was a yearning inside of me that beckoned me to write it. Who am I to limit the book in its movement? The book will travel where it is needed. If prisoners are reading it and getting something out of it, then job well done. These are the kind of people I want to reach anyway. They are the lost and they have time on their hands. The words I wrote are actually being absorbed, rather than tossed aside in a pile. I am blessed beyond words.
Whatever I am aiming for may not be what the universe has in store for my life, and I have to accept this. This is why I blog a lot about knowing exactly what feeling you are trying to reach, instead of chasing specific things, or expecting certain outcomes. When I write, I simply want to relate to other people. I desire a connection with the world through the likes of my writing. I don’t discriminate on who those people are. I may not be reaching publishers, but I am reaching prisoners. I think this is incredibly beautiful. It’s real life poetry if you ask me. Other things that tend to worry me will fall into place because they always do. I simply have to follow my gut and trust that I’ll be taken care of. It’s none of my business how the universe takes care of me. When I am on my path, I’m always provided for.
If FIVE doors slam in my face this week, a whole world still embraces me. This is my understanding and its yours for the taking. Thank you to my readers in Greece, Bulgaria, Mexico and South Africa. Thank you to my American readers, and my prisoner readers. Here is a link to my Amazon page: