“Live in each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit.” – Henry David Thoreau
When I first started blogging in 2009, the name of my blog was “Live for the Season.” It was inspired by the above quote, which I’ve always loved, combined with my desire to continuously remind myself to fully embrace what each season brings. Seasons of life, seasons of the year, the good and the bad – all of it.
I don’t remember when I started writing, but I think once I learned I could put letters together on paper to form words and share experiences, that’s when it began. It was long before I called myself a “writer,” but looking back, I guess writing was always my truth and the way I made sense of the world.
I’m one of six children – number six in the lineup. My father and mother had all of us within an eight-year stretch, which is a level of crazy I don’t think I’ll ever understand, but it worked for them. Being a young guinea pig for my older siblings was how I learned lots of important lessons really early in life, like that Santa Claus doesn’t exist, if a stranger offers me candy I should say ‘Sure, thanks!’, that our house was built upon an old Indian burial ground (to assure sound sleeping), and how to gift wrap all my older brothers’ girlfriends’ birthday presents.
I also learned how to hold my own. I may have been the smallest one in the house, but I was feisty and resourceful. You have to get creative and learn to fend for yourself growing up with so many siblings. I’d say it was like Hunger Games, but really it was more like Krav Maga – you develop skill in using whatever materials you can gather in your immediate surroundings to ensure survival. Once, in self-defense, I threw a buttered roll so hard at my brother’s head that the poppy seeds broke the skin on his face. I’d say I wasn’t proud of it, but I’m not a liar. It was glorious.
There was never a dull moment, and there was always noise: a beautiful soundtrack of chaos. I consider myself to be more quiet and introverted, and I think maybe this was how I absorbed it all, became an observer, and channeled my voice into writing.
I was a writer when, in my homework journal in the third grade, I told the story of my older brother’s hamster whose name was Boner. I couldn’t figure out why my teacher was laughing or why she called my mom, but I did learn there was power in words and story. (RIP, Boner, and thanks for the inspiration.)
I was a writer when I spent many college evenings and afternoons, not at the bar, but hanging out with my much older friend and mentor, co-writing a screenplay that still lives only in our computers.
I was a writer when I submitted my story of planning a wedding to a magazine editor who to my amazement not only wrote me back but published it and offered me a job. I thought at the time: this must be a fluke. They are going to fire me once they discover I’m not really a writer. After it was published a reader emailed me to say, “Thank you for writing this!” and the power in that email, in knowing that someone related to what I wrote and that it actually helped them, is what spurred my first book.
I was a writer while I was pregnant with our daughter, working a full-time job and designing websites part-time at night, still writing because I had no choice: I am a writer. Once our daughter was here and I knew I could not go back to an office job, it was time for me to fully believe that I was a writer – and keep writing. It has been tricky and challenging, especially with the introduction of our second child. To be honest, sometimes things are a straight-up sh*t-show. But I’ve learned that if you stay the course, things have a way of working out.
Keeping rhythm with the momentum and following the unknown opened the door to show me that I don’t need to have a plan or know what I’m doing; that I can allow things to unfold, trust myself to live my truth and share my experience with the world.
So now, I love that I am a writer. I never know which direction my ship will turn, but I do know that I can finally trust myself to write from the heart and follow inspiration where it leads. That it doesn’t matter what the topic, only that it resonates with me and comes from my soul. To take a snapshot of my interpretation of this season of life and share it through writing.
Some seasons produce gorgeous flowers, an abundance of fruits, flavors, fresh air and singing in the rain. Others are stormy, cold, and can honestly really suck to get through. But there is beauty and life in each of them. And one thing is for sure: they eventually pass. I love the thought of making the most of them while we live them, and finding the meaning – even if it’s tough, even if I forgot my raincoat, even if I know the good ones won’t last. Seasons are an ebb and flow, and that is the beauty of life. My hope is to capture them in writing.
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An Official Bio
Alessandra Macaluso is the author of What a Good Eater! and The Real-Deal Bridal Bible, host of the Real-Deal Brides podcast, and blogger at AlessandraMacaluso.com. Alessandra’s work is featured in several anthologies which can all be found on her Amazon author page, and she has contributed to The Huffington Post, Scary Mommy, and many other online publications. Her original screenplay “Polar Suburbia” placed as a semi-finalist in the Moondance Film Festival.
In addition to writing, Alessandra’s other addictions include interior decorating, cooking, gardening, and red wine. She’s mom to daughter Penelope, son Ciro, and a twenty-five pound Maine coon cat named Marcus who is convinced he is a dog. She spends her time driving her OCD husband completely nuts with her constant rearrangement of scenery in their home.