I got a rejection this morning. Another one. The ninth in six weeks.
Was I upset? Absolutely. I let myself be angry for about five minutes. I may have punched the mattress a few times.
It’s after times like these I get a bit introspective. That, and I’ve got a birthday coming up. It’s almost impossible to not think about what I’ve done with my life so far. Have I made the difference in the world that I hoped for this year?
This past year has been hugely different from previous years. In November 2016, I sent out my first query letter seeking a publisher for my first novel. This process is not for the weak at heart. Every time I hit send, I put this book into someone else’s hands hoping they will see in it the potential I do.
Then comes the waiting. And waiting. And waiting.
This is not calm, patient waiting. This is anxiety gripping at the throat waiting. Any minute an email might come that will change everything. It’s tense business. It’s hard to go on living a normal life and not be forever staring at my phone waiting for that notification to come through.
After five and six and ten and fourteen rejections you’d think I’d get numb to it. And I have, a little. You are forced to distance yourself from your project and see it as something other than your baby.
At the same time, it’s hard to not take rejection personally and not have feelings of worthlessness creep in when my project I’ve thrown my soul into is rejected time and time again.
What does this have to do with happiness? Nothing. Everything.
If this year has taught me anything it’s that happiness has nothing to do with what is happening around you and to you. Good things happen, bad things happen. Should you depend on your circumstances to determine your mood, you are cursed to live a life that looks like a roller coaster. The only constant in your life is you. If you can’t find happiness in your own skin, what makes you think you can find it anywhere else?
There has been one other significant change in my life this past year. My youngest now goes to school everyday. I didn’t realize what a difference it makes when I can take care of myself instead of living in survival mode. You can’t be happy if you are living in survival mode. You are just trying to not drown as the next wave comes.
It’s been a long year, and an educational one. Between finally getting some “me” time and learning to accept endless rejection, I’ve found a weird happiness.
I’m okay with the me I am. And that’s just fine.
How have you found your happiness? Share in the comments below! Don’t forget to “like” and “subscribe” so you don’t miss out on future posts.