Come To The Edge

| 5/9/2011 7:16:11 AM

A Red Pine Mountain LogoAnother winter post.  If you were to ask me why, I would say that this winter was a defining moment in my life in many ways and before I say goodbye to the season and embrace spring which has finally arrived in Vermont, I'd like to share one more piece of writing.  The tag line of my blog is "Live Your Dreams, Share Your Hearts," but it's not always as simple as it sounds.

Come To The Edge 

Lately, my life has been absorbed by a writing class and the 5,000-word short story I had to produce. Engulfed by my work, I’ve paid scant attention to changes around me.

The winter weather at my Vermont home turned bitterly cold and snowy as I sat day after day at the computer birthing a character, Agnes, dear to my heart. She is flawed, but it is her flaws that make her so precious to me. And, as I wrote her story, that of a battered woman of my age (50s), who isn’t able to see any choices beyond life with an abusive man, my life in many ways started to mirror hers. I became fearful and timid and afraid. My anxiety peaked when I finished the story and submitted it for peer review and awaited their comments. Am I a writer? Am I talented enough to have what it takes? What do others think of my writing? As I awaited validation or censure, I became tense and joyless.

And while I was working on Agnes' story, I decided to start riding my young Morgan mare, Khrysta, who had sat idle since the fall. I assumed we would pick up right where we left off, but I was wrong.

At first, Khrysta seemed excited to be out in the snow packed woods. But one day, as we were out on the trails, a small animal ran under her hooves. She reared in the air, headed home to the security of her barn, and became afraid and unwilling to extend herself beyond her immediate surroundings. I could visit her, groom her and tack her, but try as I  might, I could not budge her from the sanctuary of her barn. Every nerve in her body quivered with fear as I attempted to urge her forward.

I decided not to push her. I was busy writing and had no time for her antics. I was more angry than sympathetic and quite willing to play the blame game. But at the moment, it didn’t matter. I was busy elsewhere.

Mountain Woman
5/16/2011 5:51:01 AM

Dave, Thank you so much for your kind words. I am very fond of the story I wrote about Agnes and I might share it on my blog but keep it password protected. It does have some rough language in it but I felt it necessary to step outside my world in order to share Agnes' life. When I decided to start writing after my husband's death, I also decided to share myself because I do believe we are all connected and share more in common than not. It is by opening ourselves up to others that we can all realize life is an incredible journey even though there are days we struggle and become lost. Thank you again so very much.

Mountain Woman
5/16/2011 5:43:08 AM

Shannon, thank you. Yes, I agree with you completely. One thing I've learned to embrace through my faith is to try to stay present in the moment. Doesn't mean your are immune from pain but to really open myself up to the journey is something I try to do. Thank you again.

Dave Larson
5/15/2011 8:43:19 AM

Mountain Woman,Your story about fears, yours and Khrysta's, is so beautiful. If your story about Agnes is written with the same heart and the same beauty, I would very much love to read it. You write with such integrity and vulnerability that I'm not surprised that you became emotionally immersed in Agnes. Thank you for sharing your stories as you do. You are inspiring.

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