January 2010. That was the month I packed the past five years of real estate files and office knickknacks into my car and said goodbye to my desk at Century 21 McAlpine. I reflected on how many phone conversations I spent swiveled around in my cushy chair, staring out the window at the car wash beyond. Sometimes I can still feel the echoes of thumps produced by Pitbull and a pair of twelves as patrons emptied trash and vacuumed floor mats.
Thankfully I was leaving McAlpine on good terms. Quitting because you feel God tell you to do something is like getting an honorable discharge. But I was still scared out of my mind. The two almost crippling fears I wrestled with were:
1. How in the world will my husband and I survive financially? At the very moment I left my career, a lot of Americans were looking for any way to keep food on the table and a roof over their heads. Smart people don’t stop working during a time like that. I wrestled with the fact that unless God provided in supernatural ways, we would lose our home along with everything else.
2. What will people think? I felt my face flame every time someone asked me how the real estate market was doing and I had to explain that I wasn’t in it anymore. Which would lead to the question of what I was doing. Which would lead to a horrifically awkward and slightly garbled explanation of why I quit my job at its most successful point in order to write about falling in love with God.
All that was a little over two years ago. We are still in our home, which I seriously thank God for. My face still flames when I answer questions about my writing, but my explanation is slightly less unintelligible. I have a completed manuscript that is being edited for the second time.
I’ve been asked the question, “So what will you do now that your book is done?” I laughingly translate that into, “Now that you’ve had your fun, when are you getting back to work?” If the last two years of my life should be classified as fun, then fun feels amazingly similar to riding a wooden roller coaster that was assembled in an hour by Carnies.
I’ll answer both questions though. I am now stepping into the frightening world of publishing/agents/putting my blood, sweat, and tears out there for the world to ignore or mutilate. I will work to get it into print. Past that, I don’t know what my life will look like. I could end up as a beekeeper in the Ozarks or an odor tester for Lady Speed Stick. But whatever I end up doing, you can rest assured that I felt a directive from God to do it.