Just been incredibly busy and not motivated to write.
I've changed a lot since I created this website, so Sword of Ink may very well morph right along with me. I don't know quite what that will entail, but I would imagine it will focus less on articles about specific aspects of writing. But in any event, I'm hoping to be writing more consistently.
A lot has happened over the past year.
I've lost my two best friends, had my heart drug out and stomped upon, by a person I thought I knew, who I apparently didn't know at all.
I've been through a whirlwind relationship that didn't end like I had hoped it would. It broke my already-sore heart.
God, with His amazing timing, brought three wonderful, precious friends into my life that I wouldn't trade for the world.
He's given me a new best friend I'd trust with anything, and strengthened a friendship with a girl I swear could be my twin.
I've befriended sweet, funny couple old enough to be my parents, that are quietly spreading Christ's love and peace through their corner of the world via the mediums of coffee, smalltalk, and music.
My novel, Hosanna House, took second place in a novel contest. My baby. My story born out of anger and sadness. It's a rough little diamond, one I'm working on polishing. I'm so afraid I'll damage it.
I've watched friends go through some incredibly difficult times, walked with them the best I could. Watched them experience amazing highs and horrible lows, just like me. Watched others seem to glide through life as if it were a smooth stream, wondering if what I'm seeing is real or if they're just really good at wearing a mask.
I've fought, and am fighting, against truth that hurts, depression that clouds, stress that tears, and physical manifestations of stress that wears.
Now, I'm getting ready to move out-of-state. Away from my home of the past twelve years. I feel like Frodo, ready to go on an adventure, yet...slightly apprehensive, all the same.
It's been one heck of a ride. One that's convinced me several times I really just don't like this world at all. Then something happens that makes me realize, hey, it's not so bad after all.
I've learned that even the hurt is important. Even though life sometimes takes you to hell and back, even though you fight until you feel like you're going to drop, bleed out, that you want to die or just quit fighting and let the overwhelmingness of your problems kill you, that pain is important.
The legalism that dodges your every step, the "friends" that backstab, the family that leaves, the relationships that crumble. The depression that sucks the light away, the priorities you just can't get straight, the anxiety and stress that wears you down until you feel like a burnt-out match lit on both ends...it is important.
I am a stronger person than I was at this time a year ago. Hopefully a better one. Right now I'm worn out, but I know that deep down, I'm stronger.
My friends, too, are stronger. Even if they can't quite see it yet. Yes, you are. I'm thinking of several of you by name. You wouldn't believe me, because you feel cracked and broken. But I've known you for a while and you've grown so much. You're a beautiful person,
Happiness, joy, peace, contentment, ecstasy, fulfillment, strength, courage, love... all these ideal emotions we strive for.
But what are they if we don't know the opposite side? How can we really know the depths of the positive emotions if we've never experienced pain, cowardice, sadness, apathy, restlessness?
I really don't think we can.
Life can really suck. I know that. I've been there. Some days, I'm still there. But the awful side of life? It's deepened my appreciation for the good side. It's forced me to be more courageous, to realize some hard truths, to do what I know is right even when it hurts so much it kills me inside, to see just how amazingly wonderful a true friend is.
The sunshine is more glorious after walking through a starless night, the spring after starving through the winter.
Above all shadows rides the Sun,
and Stars for ever dwell:
I will not say the Day is done,
nor bid the Stars farewell.
- Samwise Gamgee, Lord of the Rings