Today’s Motherhood and Writing guest is Cara Meredith. You’ll notice that she references her son, but in the time between responding and this post going live, she is now the mom of TWO beautiful boys.
If you’re new to this series, check out the archives for more perspectives of motherhood and writing!
Why do you write/blog?
I write because I have a story to tell. I write because the process in and of itself is healing and therapeutic to my head and heart. And I write because I’d start going a quick-crazy were I not to take this time to put pen to paper (or, fingers to keyboard, as is more often the case).
How long have you been writing/blogging?
Ever since I could form letters and let my imagination come to life on the page, writing has always been a form of soul food to me. In high school, college and graduate school, I preferred the process of writing essays and research papers to standard test taking; vocationally, I taught high school English for four years, and then worked for a non-profit outreach ministry for eight years. In both environments, writing was part (but certainly not the whole) of my job, and as I look back on it now, often one of my favorite aspects. In that way, I sporadically started blogging in 2006, but it wasn’t until officially leaving the work force to pursue writing and speaking that I began blogging and writing with intention.
How has your current season of life impacted your writing/blogging?
Well, for starters, it’s definitely given me material! Parenting a young child is my current season of life, and because I left my (paid) job to both take care of our son and pursue my dream, I find that there’s a balance and a dance and a juggling act that take place everyday. For instance, I’ve finally come to understand that I cannot care for my son and write at the same time; I am not the brilliant multi-tasker I’d like to call myself, and frankly, my son doesn’t want Mama paying more attention to the lap top than to him! I must be creative then with when and how I write, and with a second little one set to arrive within the month, we’ll soon be finding an entirely new balance.
How has this season of life changed your writing habits?
I used to have the luxury of writing any time I felt like it, within reason of course. Writing now has often become the luxury I choose when I have free time – so if I ever find myself complaining about not having enough time to fill-in-the-blank whatever, I remind myself that this is the choice I’ve made. This is how I’ve chosen and am choosing to spend my free time. In that way, I primarily write during nap time, after our son has gone to sleep, and during the day when we hire babysitters (of which I am a HUGE advocate!).
What is your writing/blogging battle cry?
My tagline is “finding Beauty in the most unlikely of places.” Because to me, Christ is Beauty, and he can be found anywhere and everywhere: in the messiness of life and in the tears we shed, over a meal with friends or in time spent in nature; on a Sunday morning or a Friday night, at Target or while sitting in traffic, driving across town. Although my audience certainly includes a large percentage of Christians, there also exists a number of people of no religious belief or background, so for me, my words reflect a varied, inclusive nature – and that, I suppose, is my battle cry. I want to communicate Truth and Beauty and Love, even if my words don’t scream Jesus, Jesus, Jesus every other sentence.
How does faith, writing, and motherhood intersect in your daily life?
The intersection of faith, writing and motherhood IS my daily life. It is the mess and the grime, the love and the laughter, and the stories that keep me going, even when I feel like I’m at the end of my rope (which is, as it seems, more often than not). This intersection, plain and simple, is me.
Cara Meredith is a writer, speaker and musician from the greater San Francisco area. She is currently writing her first book, a memoir of belief and disbelief, only when she’s not on a hunt for the world’s greatest chips and guacamole. She loves people, food, reading, the great outdoors and her family. She is wife to James, and mama to their two-year old son, Canon, and a second little boy set to make his appearance in August (Theo arrived 8/29/14!).