No, this isn’t a tribute to Jewel. Though that album was pretty awesome and I’ve been known to still jam out to it. And it was “Pieces of You” not “Pieces of Me” anyway.

Last night, I was in the absolute pit of blahs.

Before I had my hysterectomy, my immune system was shoddy at best. After an extended time of stressors (usually really busy times at work or school or what have you) my body would simply crash. 

I’d get sick. My body would go into fight mode for the time it needed to while I was busy, and then, when things slowed down, it would attack me from the inside out.

This was the cycle of my life for years. While I don’t get sick like that now my immune system is in better shape, my brain seems to be what turns on me.

I’ve been mentally exhausted for the last several weeks. And severely discouraged in my writing. I’d have some good posts, but I wasn’t getting a ton of feedback unless I posted about something political, etc.

The more I write, the more I want to write. And lately, it’s been very difficult for me to stay out of my mental funk long enough to form cohesive thoughts, let alone formulate a post about them.

This week, I was scrolling through LinkedIn, looking for freelance jobs. I’ve been doing that since June of last year. Most of what I find are out of state and they end up wanting an in-house employee. Or, they just aren’t something I’m qualified to write, like technical manuals for some type of software somethingorother. 

SEO is a big thing in the freelance world. Search engine optimization is what companies are looking for in their writers. They want you to be able to take keywords and links and sprinkle them throughout a post without looking like that’s what you’re doing. This brings in traffic to websites because those keywords are being searched and voila! There you are with your article or product or what have you.

I have no technical experience in SEO, but I know it works because I went from not categorizing or tagging my own posts on this blog TO doing that and my own subscribers have more than doubled ever since. People have to be able to find you to read your stuff.

As I was looking for freelance work, I’d submit samples and resumes and never hear anything back. And my heart grew a little heavier with every door that slammed, or didn’t even open to begin with. 

Lately I was feeling like maybe I wasn’t so good at this writing thing after all.

But I saw a friend and her husband this week. The husband said, “Hey. You write really well. I read your stuff. I have it bookmarked. I don’t agree with all of it, but you write it well.”

And I took this as extremely high praise. This is a smart man. And a tough one. Ex-Marine, former cop, and avid reader. 

I was a little taken aback and incredibly humbled. He went on to tell me that he could argue with someone like me, someone who had some common sense. 

And that felt good. Debating aside, the fact that I somehow come across that way by the words I put out on a page…..that’s pretty awesome to me.

So, with this compliment kind of giving me a thread to continue holding onto, I sent in another resume and writing samples to another company looking for freelancers, fully expecting no reply.

Until I received one.

And today, today I got offered an opportunity to join the writing team of a SEO company. Based solely and completely on my writing ability.

It’s a big day for me. The articles aren’t going to make me rich, but that’s not the point. The point is to expand and grow and build my portfolio until writing, the only thing I want to do, is the only thing I am doing.

I seriously doubt my friend’s husband knew what his compliment meant to me. I know, deep down, I have a gift with words. But we all like to know our gifts are appreciated sometimes. 

And I pour my heart and soul into what I’m writing. Even if it’s not religious or political. 

Everything I write is a part of me. Little pieces of myself. 

So encouragement, appreciation for those pieces puts me on a high plain. It’s not pride so much as relief. Relief that somebody else “gets it” or felt inspired, or felt validated, or became informed. 

It makes me feel like I’m living out my purpose. 

So tonight, I’m no longer in the pit. I’m thankful. And excited. And nervous, but relieved. 

Because I have a chance. And that’s all I have been waiting for.

Maybe I have an angel standing by after all.