1. Hey Molly whats going on? I understand where you are in life, usually these thoughts come at a cross road in your life that has waken you to see right where you’re at. This is an opportunity and God has flung open the door. All you need to do is step into it.

    These same fears are going to come in the process and if you can face them now, and conquer them, you have already attained that which you have received in Christ Jesus. Amen!

    ♥ Linda Mendible

  2. such a good post molly! i would definitely say that i am a worrier and have fears and i know that there are many things i struggle to surrender. I’m sure i’d be more used by him if I let those things go!

  3. Molly,

    This is exactly what I have been struggling with lately. The thing that holds me back in life most of the time is definitely fear. This has been my favorite verse since childhood: Joshua 1:9. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged. For the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” It is a constant journey. I appreciate your honesty!


  4. The greatest thing about having kids is that they allow us to see their future and it makes us want to be a catalyst for them. I know what you mean about crazy baby love and how each time you look at Lilly you light up. We get in our own way though. Self-doubt creeps in and says, “oh no you can’t” when all you want is a cheerleader on your side who says, “Oh yes you can!!!”

    I’m excited about your goals and excited that I get to follow you as you reach each and every one of them.

    This is a timely post for me, as most have been this week, as I have been having a big think about the direction of my life. The scripture you shared, the words you have written, and the insecurities that you have shared make me feel like I’m not alone and neither are you.

    You can do it Molly!!

  5. I didn’t expect this post to hit me so hard — I have to admit that I almost cried. There’s so much that I want to say and so much more that I know I won’t be able to put into words. Though I’ll certainly pray about this and keep this message in my thoughts this week as I recenter myself in God.

    Thank you for this lovely post. It was like taking a sharp breath of air — a little unexpected, but refreshing.

  6. Sounds like you are processing, which I think is the first step in moving forward. 🙂 I’m here to help with a couple of those goals when you’re ready, if you need it 🙂

  7. Such a great post Molly! Quite a few reflective personal blog posts out there this week… makes me think the universe is yelling at me…or calling to me. I think this time I’ll isten 🙂 and act.
    Love seeing your journey as a new mom. You three as soo adorable. xoxo

  8. There you go again, making me tear up with a post.

    I can see what you mean with that video. It reminds me how much of my life I’ve lost to some form or another. How much time I’ve sunk into things not completed, that can’t be completed, that won’t be completed. How much time I’ve lost flailing around as I found one reason or another why my dreams won’t happen, and as each dream died its quiet little death, they took pieces of me, pieces of my time, pieces of my life, with them. Time I won’t get back, time I can’t reinvest in something more productive or useful. I feel like most of my time these days is wasted – particularly when I punch in at a job I hate that I have absolutely no talent for, but seems to be the only place where the economy wants me, because I have a pulse and the pride that defined me when I was younger has been melted down and sold for scraps of cash to keep the lights on. I’m trading larger and larger chunks of my existence away just to sustain it, and I’m feeling very useless that I can’t do more with what’s been given to me.

    When we were back in college, I’d already had a bumpy road, but I was still quite certain that I was going to become a great man who’d save the world someday, I was just working on the how. In College, I was going to become the first American U.N. Secretary General. Except that wasn’t going to work because nobody from the Five Veto Powers ever gets to high office within the U.N., because they scrupulously avoid appearing to favor them. So then I was going to work for the Foreign Service. Except then I discovered in Graduate School that the Foreign Service is just like the military, moving you all over the world every couple of years, and that it is a very stratified world, where at the lower levels, you are told to sit down, shut up, and take notes, at the mid – levels, they only let you talk about a handful of subjects and then they hand you a script to speak from and speaking off script gets you canned, and at the highest levels, you are doing all the work while the politically appointed ambassador takes all the credit. Oh, and all the real diplomacy actually gets done by the Secretary of State and/or the President anyway. Okay, fine, so I’ll work for the State Department, as a policy analyst, taking the reports from abroad and turning them into policy back home. Great. If you’d just file the application and wait five years until a spot opens up, and please make sure to intern for free at at least five different foreign policy think tanks while you wait. No, we don’t care how you feed yourself in between now and then. And if you don’t speak at least five languages fluently, don’t bother applying. Along the way, I toyed with the idea of being a college professor as well, because the thought of being paid to listen to the sound of my own voice appeals to me very much and the whole point of becoming this educated was to get people to hang on my every word and get paid for it. That was a nice dream – until I watched my colleagues in graduate school do that very thing for less than I was being paid on average to drive pizzas. Every university in America is churning out hundreds of Ph.D.s every year that all want the few dozen tenure track positions that appear every decade, and the rest of them end up teaching as adjuncts for peanuts. You want to know what’s wrong with America? We’ve got Ph.D.’s on food stamps, that’s what! So I kind of gave up on Graduate School, I let the work defeat me, and I’ve been lounging around beaten ever since.

    All my life, I’ve banked on my brains being the thing that will separate me from the herd and open the path to the life I want. But how smart can I be if I can’t figure out what to do with those brains, especially when they’re matched up with my nonexistent social skills, the abilities that are really required to get anywhere in life? What was I thinking, that I could be a diplomat with zero social skills and the incredible ability to thoughtlessly offend people without even noticing that I did it? In my personal life, that causes rifts with friends and gets me fired from jobs. If I did that on the international stage, I could be causing wars, not stopping them! And who’d want to work with me in a university setting if I’m that good at offending people? I’d never make tenure no matter how many papers I published. The only thing I can think my way into is out of my dreams and into depression.

    I know what’s holding me back very well. The twin forces of Fear and Shame hold me tight in their grip, and they often throw me into the dungeons of Depression as they make me feel I am worthless and useless and that this world has no place for me or use for me. I’m afraid that I’ve already made enough wrong choices in my life that no amount of making the right ones will matter anymore.

    And yet I still cling to this one tiny dream I have left. All throughout this long string of dreams that I’ve had, I put aside the original dream, the one I’ve had since I was a teenager reading fantasy novels and a twentysomething at the D&D game. Someone gets paid to write this stuff, and why can’t it be me? I had put that dream aside a long time ago, mostly because my parents talked me out of it as a career option. My father encouraged me to write, but tried to steer me towards something which pays more steadily. I still remember what he said about being a freelance writer – “You don’t write, you don’t eat” – and he only had it about half right, because you can write all you want, but if no one buys it, you still won’t eat! That thought still terrifies me, and that fear keeps me away from looking at it as a serious career option. My mother still thinks I should be an architect, engineer, or computer repairman, something that will always be needed, pay well, and keep me out of social situations. I can understand why she thinks that, but I hated every minute of computer tech school, and the skills I learned there, you can teach yourself with Youtube these days. I was never sold on her idea that I could save the world by inventing the next tech gadget. I’m still not. Yet Steve Jobs is an Icon and he’ll be remembered forever, and Bill Gates will do more good with his money than I’ll ever manage with mine. Maybe Mom was right, but I wouldn’t be happy doing that. And, over the course of my education, I learned that, as much as I like it, I don’t think I’d be as happy in politics or diplomacy as I am sitting in front of my computer, writing.

    This is, I’m convinced, at least one of the many reasons God put Kristi in my life as my partner and companion. She’s the only one who believes in my crazy dream of writing roleplaying books for a living. She doesn’t care how much it doesn’t pay (and it really doesn’t) or how hard it is to crack into the market. She cares that, when I am writing for game or about game, I am happy, and that is what she wants for me. I’m pretty sure that’s what God wants for me too. Why would He have given me these gifts, shown me this thing that I have come to love, if He didn’t want me to use it?

    I’ve seen these visions in my mind’s eye that I know I didn’t come up with on my own. A coworker asked me to describe my perfect day once, and I answered without hesitation that I’d dreamed of it, once. In the dream, I was in a huge panel room at one of the biggest cons in the nation, and Kristi and all of our friends were up there with me, and I was presenting our latest corebook to about a thousand cheering fans came to see me and hear me talk about it. I’ve also dreamed of long days and late nights at the computers surrounded by my friends as we all bang out our respective portions of the next splatbook fueled by pizza and 5 Hour Energy, and of the slick feel of newly pressed and bound hardback book of our latest system in my hands, knowing that I made this real.

    It just feel so selfish, for wanting that, because that doesn’t do anything to help solve any of the world’s problems. It’s entertainment. It’s distraction. It’s something first world kids do to take their minds of their meaningless first world problems while people are starving elsewhere in the world. I feel guilty that my mind could be bent towards changing the future of humanity for the better, but my heart wants nothing more than to write about the Free Cities of Avel, or to describe the Desert Empire of the Falros, the swamps of the two races of as – yet – unnamed lizard peoples, or to finally put a name to the blue skinned, big headed ethereal beings in my head’s eye who channel magic in our world as easily as breathing, and are most negatively affected by its apparent decline. It would make me happy, but it wouldn’t help others, and I know that my work needs to help others in a big way if I’m ever to be truly satisfied.

    I still haven’t resolved these quandaries in myself. But I do know one thing. That my heart wants these things, and I’d be happiest – selfishly, stupidly, deliriously happy – if I chased them. I may try and fail and never get there. I may be presenting my books to a few dozen people instead of a few thousand people. I may never make enough at this to make it my full – time, pay – the – mortgage – and – feed – the – family job. But I will never know one way or another unless I try.

    And now I’ve written a comment longer than the post. You need to stop asking these open – ended essay questions, you know, especially if you don’t want me to chase catharsis by answering them.

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