The very awesome Jody Hedlund pinned this on Pinterest a while back, and I immediately repinned it. I thought it would give me incentive to keep going during those times I felt like quitting, whether it was writing, watering the rosebushes or repainting every baseboard in the house. But you know what? It didn’t, because I made excuses not to remember this little saying as well as making excuses for not doing lots of things I should have been doing.
Oh, I’m the Queen of Excuses and can find one for any occasion. But what it boils down to, for me, anyway, is a combination of laziness and insecurity. Laziness because it would involve sitting my butt down in the chair and dragging words out of my head (writing), getting out in the heat (watering the roses), or taking on the exhausting task of sanding, priming and painting, all while contorted into uncomfortable positions on the floor (the baseboards.)
The insecurity is what gets me most, though; the fear of overwatering and killing the flowers, the fear that the paint job will end up looking horrible and everyone who walks into my home will immediately know it and secretly wonder if I’d let a roomful of toddlers loose with fingerpaints, and the fear that what I write will be worse than the “What I Did Last Summer” essays I was forced to write in primary school, and about as interesting. Insecurity is just a fancy word for fear of failure.
So, no; the dog didn’t eat my homework (or my novels!) and I have no excuse for not working on them or starting a new one, no matter how hard I try to justify it to myself. Just gotta suck it up and get on with it. And in the end, even if my roses die, and my paint job blows, or my books stay on the hard drive forever, at least I’ll know I tried.
(And by the way, one time our dog DID eat my daughter’s homework! It fell off her desk during the night, the dog discovered it and had a great time shredding it. I had to write a note to her teacher to assure her that, yes, this was a valid reason for not turning in the assignment. The teacher later told me she framed the note!)