The Irresistible Urge vs The Unavoidable Laundry

The urge to write is a funny thing. It’s not irresistible, but it’s enough to create a low-level buzz of dissatisfaction when it is ignored. It is the fly inside the lampshade you can’t seem to reach, a noise that becomes more noticeable the more you try to ignore it.

Yesterday was like that for me. I had a laundry list of domestic duties to attend to, a list that included laundry of course. Things that needed to be done if children are to appear presentable and the cogs of family life are to turn smoothly. Yet every time I walked past my computer I could hear the words yet to be written calling me, seducing me to rewrite Glitter in the Sun until the prose glowed and the copyright issues were resolved – or join my fictional protagonist Liridona in her fantastic steam punk world.

My primary problem with chosing household maintenance over writing is this: words do not unwrite themselves at the end of the day – the way laundry is worn, floors are dirtied and dishes are used. I have yet to find a place in my head where housework does not feel fundamentally futile. So, no matter how hard I fight it or ignore the call of the keypad, a day in which I have not written feels like a day in which all evidence of my efforts evaporates.

Yes, there is satisfaction in seeing my husband and children in clean, freshly pressed clothes. Yes, I enjoy walking through a house that does not wear a second coat of golden retriever hair. And yes, clean dishes are fantastic. But not like the satisfaction of leaving behind words that may inspire someone to seek God.

My comfort is in the secure knowledge that writing is my calling, and that God is making a way for Glitter in the Sun to reach publication and distribution, as well as projects not yet complete or even conceived.

So I continue to chose to honor God in every aspect of my life. I will honor Him for calling me to write by writing words that bring honor to Him. And I will honor him for the most precious and irreplaceable gifts of all, my family, by taking care of them too.

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