I am moved by this 50th anniversary of the March on Washington. It is one of the first things I remember as a child, and one of the first things I saw on a television at school. My teacher, Mrs. Ericson, let us skip reading group to watch it. Today, looking at the video of the march I was struck by the diverse people involved – people who stopped their lives for a moment, to stART a change.
It seems to me that when a condition exists that clearly demands change, it requires the courage of many to stART things moving in a new direction. Sure, individual heroes can clear the path, but change that impacts many requires the work of many.
Most beginnings are born of endings. Finish a project or a relationship or a good book, and see if you don’t crave to start something new. stARTing is life-giving. It’s energizing. And sometimes, if we have wounds to lick or the need to distract ourselves, stARTing a new thing is prescriptive therapy.
When my firstborn daughter left for college, I didn’t really need a new project, but I needed some therapy. So I stARTed a book.
Do Your Laundry or You Will Die Alone is an illustrated advice book for young women coming of age. In it, I have tried to fluff and fold topics that moms want their daughters to know as they head out into the world or to a new life stage. I mingled artwork I’ve done over the past several years with cheeky tidbits of advice from a letter I wrote to my oldest when she left for college.
Today, two years later, my last daughter begins her senior year of high school, and the book is finished, but still on my computer. (This makes me a terrible role model for the stARTists I raised.)
So, I have a new stART: the publishing and marketing process, a stage my author friends tell me can be a bigger project than writing a book. If I want to sell books, I will have to build a social media platform around parenting and young women, not exactly the sphere I’ve been playing in as a business person. Doing this under the scrutiny of my opinionated offspring adds just enough terror to make it exciting.
So today, on the last first day of school I will get to enjoy as a parent, I don’t have time to boo hoo about endings. I have a new stART to stART!
As you see me out there flailing around, I hope you’ll retweet, share and show me the way to the markets I’m trying to reach: launching women and the mothers who love them.