Photo by Leland Francisco
So here we are, the launch of Steady Days. Today represents a beautifully eerie, coming full-circle sort of feeling for me.
For the past two years--while I've labored in love on this little project, one quote has impacted and fueled me like none other. It's kept me going through dark times of self-doubt, and also brought a smile to my face on days when words flowed easily.
The following words were written by Marianne Williamson and used by Nelson Mandela in his 1994 Inaugural Speech:
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, "Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?"
Actually, who are you not to be?
You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in all of us.
And when we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."
This image of a light shining is vivid and precious to me--because it takes me right back to how Steady Days began.
It was late 2007. Trishna had joined our family from India just a few months earlier. I spent dawn to dusk learning to keep up with a four-, three-, and two-year-old.
One day Steve came to me with an idea. "Why don't you write about how you're making life work for our family?"
I looked at him like he had lobsters coming out of his ears.
"Uh, I'm a bit busy at the moment." (Insert understated sarcasm here.)
I finally said that maybe I could write at some point in the future, but I would need a huge lightening bolt sign from the heavens if I was actually meant to do it at this particular time in our lives.
And that was that.
Or so I thought.
A few weeks later Steve headed out of town for business. I was holding down the fort alone at home, when I got an email from an out-of-town friend--a friend we look up to, but who we didn't speak to regularly and who had no clue what Steve and I had been discussing. (Hi Jill!)
"I had a dream last night. It seemed like it may have some significance for you. Can I call to tell you about it?"
Now, can I tell you the number of times in my life someone has had a significant dream about me and wanted to call and tell me about it?
Only one. This one. It's not exactly the type of email one receives every day, is it?!
Later that day, Jill and I talked. I started to physically tremble with wonder as she told me the following:
"In my dream, I saw you walking in a busy convention center. You held hands with all three children, moving confidently through the crowd. Under your arm, you carried a light--a decorative ceiling light fixture.
The light was covered with photos of you and the children--smiling together and doing the activities of life. When people asked you about it you said, "I believe this is going to hang and shine light in many homes."
In the moment after Jill's words ended, I knew I had to do this. I had no clue what the outcome would be. I knew it would be messy; I knew it would be busy; I knew I was scared to death. But I had to try.
Because if I don't shine my light, who will?
So here it is: at times it's been flickering and dim, at times bold and strong. I've given it my all, and my hope truly is that this book brings a little light and life to your home as well.
**Now enough about me: We all have passions and lights to shine. I'd love to hear about yours today!**