Doubt and Believing

Harry1Previously on Betsy’s Blog…

As you know if you’ve joined us for previous installments of The Quest, Betsy has decided to become a successful independent author / entrepreneur. Harry, a white gerbil, is her Guide on this Quest, determined to help her find her way as she navigates the confusing paths leading to her goal. Betsy is discovering (well, she already knew this, so it’s more like admitting) that most of the confusion and false starts come from within herself.

When last we left them, Harry had fallen into a depressed and debauched state after Betsy and her Muse were attacked by a Dark Voice who lives inside Betsy’s brain. Harry felt he had pushed too hard and made Betsy vulnerable to the bad thoughts.

Betsy pulled Harry back from the brink, but he still had to make an appearance before the International Muse Council for an evaluation. He’s been gone for a couple of weeks, but now he’s back. How did things go while he was gone? Join us and we’ll see….


Harry? Are you here? *Betsy enters her brain*

Yeah – over here, doll! *Harry waves from his position sitting on top of his tallest gerbil habitat* I was checking out the Scrivener file on my gPad. Looks like you got a lot done while I was gone.

Some. *Betsy settles herself on the sofa* Did you have a good time at the Muse Council?

Eh. *Harry shrugs and settles back on his paws, putting gPad down beside him* They had me go through some, whaddaya call it, psychological testing. What happened? Did you lose your way while I was gone? I told Muse to call on my cell if you looked like you were combusting again. The Council had a temp looking after you—

*Betsy blinks* A temp? Really? Why didn’t I know?

Bob didn’t want interaction. *Harry snorts* He’s just putting in his time until retirement.  Stupid armadillo.

Oh.  Um…armadillo?

He’s bitter because he never made Hare. So come on. What’s up? We’re partners, remember? Talk to me.

*Betsy shifts in seat* I didn’t lose my way. Not exactly. There were some family responsibilities—


Yeah. The problem was when I sat down at the computer to start writing again. I felt, well, stupid.

Stupid? Whaddya mean stupid?

I mean stupid! *Betsy throws hands up in the air with frustration* Like it was pointless. Like I was just fooling myself. Worse, like I was completely wasting my time and everyone was laughing at me. Like you and the Muse didn’t… exist.

Hmmm. *Harry looks serious* That is bad. No wonder Muse didn’t call. She must have faded when you stopped believing in her.

*Betsy plays with thread on sofa* When I felt like I was fooling myself, then my goal and my journey weren’t valid and, well, real. Like it was all a big joke or something.

*Harry leans forward* *Stares at Betsy* But you found us again.

It was hard. *Betsy smiles at Harry* When I first sat down and looked at my manuscript, it was like there was a glass wall between me and it. *Makes face* Or maybe that like I was just throwing mud at the wall.

You were out of the flow. *Harry nods* Then you started to question and doubt decisions you’d made.

I was doubting everything and the I felt like I was just being completely stupid. *Betsy shrugs* I mean, look at me. Other people get books done in months and it’s taken me…a lot longer.

*Harry sighs* For God’s…are you back on that again? *holds out a paw* *saws one finger over another* See this? It’s a little violin playing just for you.

Oh, stop. *Betsy slaps his paw away* It’s just…when I stop, I lose my hold on the fact that this can be real. That it IS real. *looks at Harry* That you’re real. That my dreams are just as valid as anybody else’s and worth pursuing.

They are. *Harry scurries down tower of gerbil habitat* *climbs up on sofa* *launches self onto Betsy’s shoulder* *stares directly into her eyes* You have to believe that they are.

I know that. *Betsy scratches behind Harry’s ears* I DO. But sometimes…I forget. Then I start believing the person who said that she didn’t know why I bothered writing and I should just stop because I never get anywhere anyway and it wasn’t worth it.


It’s okay. *Betsy smiles at Harry* It really is. She was just talking based on what she’d do. But sometimes…it gets in my head.

Okay. Okay. *Harry pats Betsy on the cheek* I’m sorry I wasn’t here to help you find your way out of the mess. But obviously you got past it because, like I said *jerks head towards gPad on tower* Lots of good progress there.

Thanks. *Betsy blushes* I just…I just kept going. And after a day or two, it started moving again.

*Harry nods wisely* The Muse was still singing to you. And maybe Bob actually got off his ass and pointed out a few signposts.

I still wish you’d been here.

Me too. *Harry shrugs* But sometimes you have to find your own way through. Looks like it worked out.

Yes. *Betsy beams* It feels real again. You feel real. Muse feels real.  It all feels real.

Wonderful. *Harry regards Betsy sternly from her shoulder* And what have we learned?

Well…*Betsy chews lip* *Thinks* I guess that it’s a lot easier to do even a little bit every day than it is to stop completely and then start up again.

Okay. *Harry crosses arms across tiny chest* And?

*Betsy smiles at him* It’s all real unless I start believing it’s not.

*Harry nods* Exactly.


To Be Continued…


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