Sunday, November 06, 2011

What's your inspiration?

Everyone has their inspiration for what they do. Whether it’s in your personal life or your professional one, or both, everyone has something that inspires them.

Depending on what I’m writing I have a few inspirations. I listen to Eminem right before I need to write a scene that is full of anger/rage. Not saying that all of Eminem’s songs are full of hatred, but he definitely helps set the right mood.  If I’m trying to write a big declaration of love and just can’t seem to get it right, I’ll take a break and watch Dirty Dancing – it’s Patrick Swayze, people, who doesn’t get all warm and fuzzy watching him? If it’s heartbreak, well, unfortunately I don’t have to look elsewhere for that, and who inspires the naughty stuff is pretty clear if you read the dedication in Last Call.

But when it comes to the day-to-day stuff, or when writer’s block sets in and I just can’t get any words out and feel what little I have done is total crap, what inspires me then to keep going? It’s simple: my oldest son Hayden. Yes, of course both my children are amazing (when they’re not driving me up the wall or making me want to tear out my hair) and they both are inspiring in their own way, but Hayden is much different from his brother.

Hayden has always been a difficult child, even as a baby. Things have always been harder for him to catch on to or do as he got older. When he was a baby he was right on his milestones, stubborn all the way, but right on them. But as he got older he just had a more difficult time whether it was talking, getting dressed, paying attention, and later writing and reading. There’s no cause for it (aside from doctors suspecting he has ADHD) he’s a perfectly healthy and normal five year old. He just learns things at a slower pace, and as a mother it’s hard to stand by and watch your child struggle.

But as much as he’s struggled it’s also incredible to watch him learn and succeed. Hayden has my stubborn streak through and through and as much as not being able to do something frustrates him, as often as it ends in tears and screaming and tantrums, he will return to what he was doing – even if it’s hours later - and not give up until he’s succeeded. His determination is amazing in everything that he does. It’s humbling and inspiring to watch him concentrate so hard as he writes his numbers in his little workbook, or when he’s playing Wii and refuses to quit until he’s beaten the level just to prove that he can.

My son’s determination inspires me to finish what I start, no matter how hard it might be or how hopeless it might seem. I keep the paper that he wrote his name on for the very first time close by when writer’s block, or even life, seems to get the best of me. Looking at his printed letters remind me if he can do it, if he can summon that much determination to put six letters down on paper when it’s so difficult for him, then so can I.


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