A few years ago, when life was really hard, with two babies, marriage, faith and sense of self rocky, I found a book and writer that would profoundly impact me for the better by giving words to my shaky feelings and giving me the permission to feel them. I read Carry On Warrior by Glennon Doyle as quickly as I could, devouring the pages, soaking up all of the validation between the covers, mentally highlighting passages and even reading some of them out loud to my husband. I found quotes from the book on Pinterest and posted them all over Facebook. The reading of that book did so much more than I can express and I will carry the lessons from it and that time in my life with me as long as I’m breathing.
One of the most profound things my dear sister, Glennon, talks about in that book is just doing the next right thing. After years of being bulimic and an alcoholic, Glennon finds herself at a major turning point, facing sobriety and unsure of what to do next. She learns to just keep showing up and to just do the next right thing.
I find myself at a turning point now and in need of my next right thing. I returned to working full time in 2016 and left that job in April of 2017 because of a horrible work environment. And while I was thankful to have the option to leave while preserving my dignity and integrity, I was still left back at home frustrated, unemployed and pissed. Leaving my job because of sexual harassment also pointed me toward how passionate I am about women’s rights and safe working environments for women but without an outlet for that passion.
And now. I feel the stirring, the purpose of that infuriating experience pushing me toward something. And I feel frustrated trying to think through what I should do next. And then I remember.
I remember the deep knowing. God’s voice, the Holy Spirit, our intuition, people call this different things, but the Lord is always speaking to us. We just have to get quiet and wait and it will come. It’s not usually an audible voice or a sign written in the sky, but a profound truth that you know deep in your gut to be the truest, rightest thing.
So I lay awake in bed at night. I get quiet. I wait. I ask the Lord for the next right thing. And I know. It settles on me like a soft, warm blanket.
Write. Open your computer and start typing.
This is all I know. I don’t know what will happen next, but this feels like the truest, rightest thing to do right now.
And I know that it doesn’t have to be good or perfect or revolutionary. Just write. Just let the words out. Let them be.
And this doesn’t make much sense to me. I was never “good” at writing in school. I always made better grades on my Spanish papers than on my English ones. Writing has never been my strong suit, but this is what I’m supposed to do now. This is the assignment.
So I write. I come to my laptop in the mornings with coffee and low expectations and I write.
The next right thing.