Sell Yourself Tall!!

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I just sold a book. Just now, to a friend of a friend, who had already read it.

They were both amazed that I had written a book, that they were meeting a real author and when I said I had written ten I thought they would swoon and need to fan themselves and have a seat. She insisted I sign it and went on and on.

To this I reacted as I typically do.

“It’s nothing, really.”

Then I charged her $8, even though the price on the back is $11 and tucked the cash in my pocket, pleased that I would have lunch money today.

Why did I do that? Why did I undercharge? Why did I shy away from my well-deserved praise and why do I act as if writing a book is no big deal?

We musn’t do this to ourselves. Whether we have written a book or a book report, cleaned the house or caught a fish, we must accept credit and hold our heads high! If we do not place value on the things that we do, then how can we expect anyone else to?

 

I think some of this stems from childhood anxiety, not being able to take compliments, not ever being taught to receive compliments and instead being taught that to boast or commiserate in one’s own successes is somehow arrogant or prideful. Well I’m not arrogant, but I am proud, of myself, for writing TEN books! There, I said it. It is a big deal. It does take countless hours and it is worth eleven dollars! She probably would have paid twenty, but I’ll never know will I?

I did the same thing the other day with a photography client and I knew the minute she reached for her checkbook that I had charged too little. She jumped too fast and I knew she was surprised, pleased, but fully prepared to pay more. Why do I do that? My husband says I do the same thing with our furniture business, that I have never charged too much, so I let him give quotes more and more. 

So, how to handle this differently, next time. Say thank you. Tell a story about how many nights you sat up, how many rough drafts you had or what you’re working on now. Share the credit with an old teacher or your mother or your children. Ask them to please get back to you and let you know what they thought. Care. Be gracious.

ch

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Being A Mother… Is HARD.

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My title may seem to be an understatement, an obvious piece of rhetoric that could be mistaken for sarcasm. But what it really is, is a cold, undeniable, fact. Being a mother is hard. 

I have an idea, let’s be responsible for another human being. Wait, say again, let’s be responsible for several other human beings. But let’s not just see that they survive, let’s really ingest their every whim, their pain and their passion, their mistakes and their successes. Let’s, we mothers pretend we can control and that we in fact are in control of everything. Every. Thing.

Every time they cry or fall or swear or take a breath, let’s feel it, hear it, breath it in with them and cry harder and louder and longer.

Let’s try a billion things, a billion times and fail. Let’s try again.

Even the good things, the poignant memories, the fantastic accomplishments, are soul crushing and bittersweet, because they are all steps taken away from us, against us, without us. Their new friends are not us, their favorite teachers are not us, their new babies and new houses and new jobs are all not ours or even with us in mind. But these are our babies.

So let’s watch, during the 86,400 instances in each day, let’s watch and wait and worry and wonder and weep, forever. Not for five years or twelve or eighteen or twenty-one years. Forever. From before they are born until after they may be gone, the ache, the draw, the magnetic tug on our ankles in the sand will always be our children.

Near or far, good or bad. On the very best of days, being anyone’s mother, is hard.

ch

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Yes, Dear

Let’s pause for a moment to give credit where credit is due.

This tour is sponsored by John & Brandon. Who? That’s ok, they prefer you really have no idea who they are, but they are the behind the scenes…the key holders…the checkbooks. I make light of it, but seriously. We are stay-at-home, awesome-as-we-may-be…mothers. Between us we manage nine children, two of them with special needs. We pay bills and run a business. We clean two big houses, prepare about two hundred portions of food a week, receive at least ten phone calls a day, drive countless miles…

Taking on this tour meant going to the men and our lives, flashing those pearly whites and saying “please?” There will be gasoline, food, housing and inventory to pay for. There will be cooking and cleaning and laundry and children to wrestle while we’re gone…and though the dogs may enjoy the extra room, two empty spaces in the master suites! They are strong, capable men, completely competent enough to handle it, but they are our responsibilities and we know many men who would have said “no,” and quickly.

Ours did not hesitate. We won’t post pictures so we don’t have to deal with the women trekking to Kansas to sneak a peek at the marvel that is our men. 😉