A failure. That's what I felt like when it came to writing in 2015.
To be clear: I do not feel like I was a failure in 2015. I spent most of the year growing a tiny human who already means more than anything I have ever done or will ever do. But when it comes to writing, I felt like 2015 was a giant fail.
There were no late nights or early mornings spent hunched over a computer, excitedly typing like in years before. There was no marking off word count milestones on a color-coded list. There was no trip to Target to stock up on notebooks and binders and new pens for NaNoWriMo. There was no novel.
Now, to be fair, I spent most of 2015 very pregnant and very sick. But I still had high expectations for writing in 2015. I had dreams and goals that went unmet.
Or so I thought.
77,857. That's the number of words I actually wrote in 2015.
Yesterday, I added up the word count of blog posts and poems and ideas jotted down in 2015. And as the number kept getting bigger, I was shocked. That's a lot of words.
77,857 is not the word count of a failure. It is the word count of a writer. A writer who had a different kind of year than she was expecting, maybe, but a writer nonetheless.
Those 77,857 words may not have been written into a novel, but I wrote them. And that has to put me one or two steps closer to my dreams. In fact, I'd say it puts me 77,857 steps closer.
So this is just a reminder that sometimes, you're closer than you think. Even if the dream you have for your life seems incredibly far away. Even if it seems like you'll never even get the chance to try for it, since you're too busy doing things like making sure rent gets paid or taking care of your family or just surviving...chances are, if it's a dream in your heart, you're a step or two or seventy-seven thousand, eight hundred and fifty-seven closer than you think you are.
They just might be steps that look different than you thought they would, and that's okay.