Sometimes Rebellion Really Pays Off

c angelsRebellion comes in many forms and even in itty bitty ways every day (as the other Debs said this week). Which got me to thinking. How have I rebelled in my life?

As a kid it looked like this:

Reading under the covers with a flashlight, well past bedtime

Sneaking Harlequin books into my big stack every time I went to the library

Watching Nightmare on Elm Street at a sleepover. Boy, did I live to regret that one

Engaging in my first kiss (and several there after) with my eighth grade boyfriend in the chem lab after school–and getting caught by the principal. My parents were NOT keen on this boy

Changing my major from pharmacy/pre-med for which I received scholarship money, to French Ed. I’ll never forget my mother saying, “you’re going to hate teenagers,” with a snarl. (Thankfully she was wrong, by the way. I love them. They make me laugh.)

And then as an adult:

Throwing caution to the wind and moving cross country for the hell of it

Resigning from a job I adored to raise my babies, even though I knew we would struggle like hell financially.

THEN THE WRITING. (You were probably hoping I’d get to this eventually) Finally, finally, finally calling myself a writer. A real one. It doesn’t sound rebellious, but it takes so much courage to claim this exalted, super-cool title, especially when you’ve been labeled something else for so long–a daughter, a student, a teacher, a mother. And especially when everyone nods and puts on a fake smile and says, “You know, I’ve always wanted to write a book, but I gave that foolish desire up a long time ago. Good luck.” (Not to mention that financial struggle I mentioned?) So yeah, claiming the title of writer, pursuing the dream, AND THEN ACTUALLY LIVING IT, took a ton of guts and an adventurous spirit.

BUT IT WORKED! Being rebellious, sometimes, really pays off.

Can you name a time your rebellion really paid off?

 

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Heather Webb

Writer, Editor
Heather Webb is the author of BECOMING JOSEPHINE, her debut historical (Plume/Penguin 2014). A freelance editor and blogger, she spends oodles of time helping writers hone their skills—something she adores. You may find her Twittering @msheatherwebb, hosting contests, or hanging around RomanceUniversity.org as a contributor to the Editor's Posts. She is also the Twitter mistress for the popular Writer Unboxed. She loves making new reader and writer friends. Stop on by her website, Between the Sheets!

Author: Heather Webb

Heather Webb is the author of BECOMING JOSEPHINE, her debut historical (Plume/Penguin 2014). A freelance editor and blogger, she spends oodles of time helping writers hone their skills—something she adores. You may find her Twittering @msheatherwebb, hosting contests, or hanging around RomanceUniversity.org as a contributor to the Editor's Posts. She is also the Twitter mistress for the popular Writer Unboxed. She loves making new reader and writer friends. Stop on by her website, Between the Sheets!

7 Replies to “Sometimes Rebellion Really Pays Off”

  1. OMG YES! Why am I not surprised that you’ve always been a rebel? I love it.

    My biggest rebellion is also the one that paid off the most. In 2010 when my husband decided he wanted to quit his job to go back to school full-time and move out of state, we went for it. Which meant I’d be providing for us both as a full-time freelancer, and somehow, I’d have to still manage to get this novel written/published. Every instinct inside me said it wouldn’t work, it was too risky, it’d be too hard…but I guess that’s why they call it rebelling, right?

    1. Natalia, I seeeeeem like a rebel, but in fact, I toed the party line with my parents most of the time.. at least until I got a burr on my butt and had to shake it!

      I’m so glad your rebellion happened or we wouldn’t have your amazing book!

  2. Letting go of your job to stay home with your kiddos IS indeed brave. I think about just mothering + writing sometimes, and leaving the steady paycheck behind, but then I freak out about the “what ifs…”

    1. It’s a very tough thing to do. It wasn’t just the “what ifs” that were hard for me, either, but the identity crisis. I had been a teacher (and I like to think a damn good one) for 8 years and suddenly I was only defined by my little humans. It was a very strange and difficult transition at first, but I wouldn’t change it for anything. It was worth it 150%.

  3. My quiet rebellion paid off eventually. By refusing to adhere to low expectations, I managed to get into Berkeley, which was one of the toughest schools to gain admittance to.

    Your story about books and flashlights brought back memories for me.

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