Creative constipation. It’s terrible. We can all get bogged down and clogged up with personal struggles. Sometimes it’s hard to breathe, take that step away, view a situation from another perspective and get one’s mojo back on track. Writers generally speaking tend to be a sensitive bunch, so circumstances affect us deeply. Such sensitivity is a trait I am inflicted with, for better or for worse.

I’m writing a middle grade novel on which the progress halted for a number of months. It seemed too difficult to keep writing this story, set in an environment so far removed from my own and which touches upon risky and controversial topics. I am fortunate I am unlikely to ever have to experience the hardship and loss my characters are facing.

I know now I need to keep writing their story and I will. I want to grow and strive to be a better human being. I’ve been clogged up with my own struggles that I’ve lost perspective. I want to be more loving, honourable and caring as a wife, mother, friend and writer. This year it has taken a terrible shake up before understanding how foolish I’ve been- how I’ve not recognised my flaws in a situation that felt hurtful to me and I know that hurt was unintended. I’ve magnified my struggles and am ashamed of doing so.

I have much to learn from the characters I am writing about. I need to learn how to love like they do. How to love unconditionally, sacrificially and deeply despite uncomfortable situations. To have a deep love which transforms lives. Not only the lives of people around us, but ourselves. This love is beautiful. It is attractive when other superficial signs of beauty decays. And although it involves sacrifice, it is only costly when you look at it from one blinkered perspective. When you can see a higher purpose it gives great reward.

We cannot change others, nor often circumstances. But we can help others when we see that help is needed. There is a lot of suffering in the world, and too often we can become so focused on our own journey that we turn a blind eye to the needs of those around us. Our self-focus to satisfy our own desires outstrips that greater call to love.

I hope unconditional love will be at the heart of the novel I am currently writing despite its risks. And I hope as I keep writing this story, it will transform me into a better form of myself. I hope it will transform my heart and I will develop a greater empathy that I can share with others even if the story itself never gets published. This story is worth writing even though it is risky. Because it is worth risking everything for love.

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