Since the moment I signed with my literary agent, I decided a book contract, should I land one, would require wild celebration. I reserved my enthusiasm for “the moment.” I dreamed about having a party, or a dinner maybe, to celebrate such a huge breakthrough in my life. Then I got my contract.
Well, I got a contract offer. I was thrilled, but nothing was signed yet, so the celebrating could wait. Then, I got another offer. I was so stressed over making my decision that celebrating didn’t even sound appealing. I finally decided, and signed on the dotted line with Abingdon Press.
Celebration time? No, I was so hit by the weight of the committment I’d just made, and daunted by the fact that I now was required to finish such an enormous project, that I pushed off celebrating, “until it’s finished.”
Well, now it’s finished, but we have yet to edit.
Here’s the thing, as a new author, a wife, a mom, a human being, there are a thousand opportunities to celebrate every week. But maybe I’m too distracted to see them. Maybe I wait for a big deal, a major achievement, to get enthusiastic about my life. Maybe all I see is what needs to be done next, instead of seeing this moment, with all its joy. All this time, I’ve been waiting for that feeling of having “arrived”… And despite all the big, awesome milestones, I never felt it. There was always the next project, another task yanking me into tomorrow.
I wonder if, like a lot of things in life, the action comes first, and the emotion follows. Maybe if I start looking for things to celebrate, I’ll begin to feel life is worth celebrating. Because I’m learning that if I wait until victory is sure, until life insists that I appreciate it, my life will fly by while I wait for it to begin. I will always assume goodness is over the next hill, after completing the next task, but there are only more hills after this one. I must celebrate on the climb, because life won’t stop for me to throw a party.
So, I’m going to look for excuses to say, “let’s celebrate!” and creative ways to do just that. Because life is worth celebrating, and celebrating now.