And yet, despite all this, the lifestyle fits. It works for me. The more I do it, the more I wonder how much it's about the flow of energy. It seems to go better for me when I think positively, and even embrace the uncertainty.
Recently, I had a bunch of pitches rejected from a magazine I've published with in the past. I was beginning to lose hope that I would ever have anything accepted by them again. And then, a couple weeks ago, a month after sending my last idea into the void, I heard back. Green light!
Today I interviewed a woman who's created a web series for the CBC about her infertility journey. And do you know the wonderful, most surprising thing? It's absurdly and hilariously funny! For me, it's such a refreshing take on what's usually such a sad and heartbreaking story.
Of course I checked the Voice app on my phone was working before she called. My husband even got involved, showing me what to do (since I usually do interviews through my computer—weird, I know).
So do you know what happened when she called? The bloody record function wouldn't work! Now, my already-anxious mind was already busy sending my nerves into a frenzy, so it's probably the last thing I wanted to happen at this particular moment.
Luckily, I have a techie-inclined (or just fast-thinking) hubby who works at home with me. Instead of letting the panic win, I simply told my interviewee about my technical difficulties and laughed it off while he dashed down to the basement to get his tablet (which had working Voice app).
In recent years, I've really learned that sharing any type of vulnerability instantly makes me more real to other people. When I confessed my initial recording woes, the woman I was interviewing told me that she was actually feeling under the weather, and shared a bit of herself with me.
I am so excited to watch this TV show she's created, and perhaps see some of my own steps on the infertility journey reflected back at me. I followed her on Twitter the other day to get a sense of her writing, and today she made my day by saying she had read MY article, the one that just got nominated for Best of the Net. She even called herself a "big fan"!
It's an amazingly beautiful feeling when another writer you respect validates your own scribbling—never mind someone who's just written a television series. It helps soothe the sting from getting rejected from The New Yorker yesterday (lofty ambitions, I know).
So today I am grateful to be a journalist, an essayist and a reporter of this mysterious thing called life. I'm happy for the fall sun shining outside my window as I work. I'm glad to be feeling well and able to document the good things about being a writer. I am also pushing myself to write more about things that really interest me.
Next week I'll be interviewing an author, a first for me. I read her memoir recently, and decided to reach out through her website and see if I could snag an interview. Her PR person got back to me quickly, and said yes. I wouldn't even have had the idea if it weren't for an ex-colleague, who got in touch recently to ask if I was still freelancing. Today I thank her for thinking of me.
Freelance life is all about connecting—making new connections and nurturing old contacts. Keeping in touch. It's a empowering feeling to feel like you're helping to write your own happiness, your own life story. Today, I thank you—each and every one of you beautiful souls—for coming along on the journey with me.