Broken but Not Defeated
By Nick Nebelsky
The prior week ended on a high-note, but this week started with a thud. I knew something was inherently wrong when my computer kept crashing. I took my Macbook Pro to the Apple Store to see if there was anything they could recommend. After two separate visits to two separate Genius Bars, the techs at both surmised that my memory was at fault, but I could replace it and all would be well. Actually it wasn’t.
I changed out the memory by increasing it to the next level – still, no bananas. Then I was told by my third-party repair shop that it wasn’t the memory; it was probably the hard drive. After swapping that out for a new, higher-capacity drive, we realized that a new hard drive was not the answer. The bad news, they told me, was that my logic board needed to be replaced, and they don’t do that type of repair because it’s cheaper to buy a new laptop than repair it.
They offered me $50 for my computer.
I took it home. It still sits on my desk in wait of a miracle drug that I hope will cure it one day. This kind of news can mean only one thing – buying a new computer – yet my wallet is telling me to find another way. And so I march on!
I tell you this “story” because it has been my life for the last two weeks. It has occupied all of my activity, and the timing couldn’t be worse; yet, there is a silver lining (I’m a glass half-full kind of guy)! I feel like a Phoenix; out with the old and in with the new. There is something both exciting and unnerving about starting anew. On the one hand, it’s about starting fresh with a new perspective. It’s a way to build from the ground up. Yet, I long for the familiar, knowing where everything is at my fingertips.
I could play victim and say, “Oh poor me!” Yet it’s amazing to start fresh from a new beginning. And the beginning is a place with which I feel a connection. When I moved out to Arizona seven years ago, I didn’t know anyone. I was a small fish in a big sea, yet now I couldn’t imagine living anywhere else. There’s something to be said for starting anew: it’s exciting and daunting at the same time.
As writers, we sometimes get stuck in the familiar. It’s always good to draw from a new perspective, to see things in a different light. It’s a chance to start over again. Yet how many times do we do this on purpose, walk away and start again? Wait a day or two and then sit down and write. You’ll see the words differently. You’ll form new thoughts, and strings of sentences will look different, and that’s okay. I always find that throwing down my thoughts onto paper is therapeutic, perhaps like throwing a ball of clay on a spinning wheel; though it has form, it’s not yet refined. It takes a whole new approach to bring out the purpose of the work. Sustained pressure, working the story until it’s ready to get fired. It’s something we all must do: enter the fire to be reborn.
When you’re writing your book, it’s okay to leave and come back. It’s okay to take a vacation from it and return with fresh eyes and a new perspective. Some may even say it’s exhilarating to know that a whole new world could be created that wasn’t seen before. We must let go to realize what is new. Writing has never been a chore for me but a celebration of words assembled into cohesive groups to form a clarity of purpose. It’s this richness of story that brings me back with a positive attitude. It’s about falling apart, regrouping, and starting anew. I think that’s what a good story contains: the trials of life, trying to get by, losing everything, challenging oneself to new heights until finally attaining your dream. Life is filled with obstacles that challenge us every day.
I’ll leave you with this ray of hope from the incomparable Walt Whitman:
For some additional quotes on Starting Over, check out 8 Powerful Quotes that Encourage You to Let Go and Start Over.
Children who are treated differently for being different need someone to take a stand for them, and Nick Nebelsky believes his books and apps do just that. Nebelsky seems to have found his niche in helping those children be heard. He’s an author, illustrator, and publisher of books, apps, and online instruction. He is offering a free online course on book creation available on his web site at IntenseMedia.com.
Good reminder for all of us. I would add that I work to appreciate each day — there is a gift in there somehwere.
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