where the story leads {for the Two Writing Teachers Community}

The world tells us to want everything pristine and ship-shape and perfect. We go to great lengths in order to keep things whole. But what if it is in the broken mess that the best things in life emerge?

Consider a broken crayon or a broken cookie or a broken circle. Often it is by splitting apart that we can reach out and touch others. Sometimes when things are broken they end up serving more, making more good in the world than before.

Today marks a break in my writing life. It is the end to a six year writing partnership on Two Writing Teachers with Stacey Shubitz. Last week I wrote to Stacey:

So this isn’t a goodbye — far from it — because I think this will allow us to simply be friends without all of the other demands of writing together. This says a lot about our relationship. There are few writers who can work together for as long as we have and remain friends. To me, this is our greatest accomplishment. Although it does feel like I’m walking away from a huge part of my writing life, I’m trying to remember at the same time I am also walking toward something else.

Stacey has walked alongside of me through the twists and turns of many life changes — becoming a mother three more times, publishing two books, writing for Choice Literacy, and learning to embrace imperfection.

Life changes and a new adventure is calling. It is time to see where the story leads and to find out if I’m brave enough to follow it. It’s time to make space for the story knocking around inside of me.

Not only am I grateful to Stacey, but I’m thankful for the years of learning and the Two Writing Teachers community. Because of you I found my voice and learned my words matter. You’ve helped me become who I am meant to be and have confirmed it is more important to be genuine and authentic than to be influential and significant.

You fuel me to write real and raw. You empower me to be bold and brave. I’m afraid I will miss you.

But just like I said to Stacey, this isn’t good bye. I’m not walking away from writing or teaching. I’ll still be here, in this little corner of the world.

Being real.

Discovering. Playing. Building. 

Sharing my story and hoping it inspires you to tell your own.

In order to make it easy to find my writing, I’d be honored if you follow me in these online spaces:

And, of course, all of my words will now live here, at Ruth Ayres Writes {Discover. Play. Build.}.

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  1. Moving into a new home is always challenging to figure out how the belongings will fit into this new space. I look forward to reading the story you must tell. I know it will continue to inspire many.

  2. I agree, Christy…a lovely corner of the world. My comfort zone. You have given me courage to find my voice again. I hope I can give you courage and support in the new twists and turns in the adventure that awaits. Hugs

  3. Life happens, doesn't it? It's so, so good to follow your heart & then I think when the winds blow & the clouds move in, you have a firm ground upon which to stand. Hugs and courage to you, Ruth, in this new journey. I'm looking forward to the next step!

  4. I'm looking forward to seeing what happens as you make space for that story knocking around inside you. Thanks for sharing so much of your life with us and nudging us to tell our own stories as well.

  5. It's assured that your farewell to one path will certainly take you to places that none of us can even imagine. I'll be following and grateful that you let me follow your journey through the miracle of the printed word.

  6. I am inspired by your desire to move forward and find the beauty and inspiration in the sometimes painful process of change. If we could all write with such passion and kindness and authenticity about the bumps and forks in our journeys, we would be blessed for the record and reflection. Thank you, as always for sharing your truth.

  7. “Although it does feel like I'm walking away from a huge part of my writing life, I'm trying to remember at the same time I am also walking toward something else.”
    I had to pause and read this several times over, Ruth. In all the twists and turns that life presents, it is so much more important to feel we are walking towards something – that there is something positive ahead to which we are ever reaching, ever striving. It took courage to step away from something you love in order to walk towards something you know will yield you what you need in this moment in time…this time in your life. I'll be sure to check in and see where this new adventure leads you!

  8. You have given so much and I am so grateful for your inspiration as a writer and a teacher. You opened my world to so much and I am better because of your generosity and hospitality.
    Thank you.

  9. It is because of your blog and the learning I've done here that I know see myself as a writer. I know that you are walking toward something meaningful and I look forward to hearing about where this new path leads you. Shine on, Ruth!

  10. Ruth, I'll say it again. You are amazing. I'm so thankful that you will still be writing in your little corner of the world. We can benefit from your story, so that we can tell our story. Far from goodbye. Thank goodness. 🙂

  11. Wishing you well as you move onto the next chapter of your writing life! I'm looking forward to reading about your new adventures. Thank you for the support and encouragement you've given through Two Writing Teachers and SOLC!

  12. I was so sad to read this. It will feel so strange to not see your posts on TWT; however, I am so very thankful that you will still be blogging here and am very excited for your second book to come out. Best of luck on this shift in your writing life!

  13. You won't miss us. We'll follow. We'll be there. All good things… thank you so very much. I am sure your son has grown out of his Thomas stage and beyond the domino I made for him, but I think of your family often and hold them in my thoughts. Good things ahead I am sure.