21 days by Liz Donald

Liz’s story, 21 days, was published in the 2018 Stories of Life anthology, Three Dummies in a Dinghy Today she shares the backstory to her piece:

The Donald family.

I first heard of the Stories of Life competition when someone shared it on Facebook. Immediately I thought it would be something I would like to try. I wrote stories a lot as a child/teenager and studied English at university, but it had been many years since I had written a story of my own. What drew me to Stories of Life, was the idea of writing a story that showed the way God was at work in my life.

However, as I looked at some of the past stories I began to wonder whether I had any interesting stories to share. I had been a stay-at-home Mum for a number of years and didn’t have any exciting tales of physical danger or recent overseas travel. So…what could I write about? Did I have any stories that anyone would want to read? After a while I decided to come back to the vision of the competition, which was sharing stories of faith from everyday life. I began to think about the things God taught me while my husband was away for work for three weeks and I was left to solo-parent our three, young daughters.

At the time, I wasn’t sure how I was going to survive, but by God’s grace I did (and so did the girls!). Actually, I didn’t just survive, but instead God used those 21 days to change me, my heart and my attitude to parenting. 21 days is about God’s faithfulness in our everyday struggles and the power of prayer.

Liz at her writing space, with her young writing companion

I wrote the story at my kitchen table in 10min increments, taking any opportunity while the kids were happily entertained to add another paragraph. Although a nice, clean, quiet writing space would have been great – I feel like there is something fitting about writing about life as a Mum of three young children in this way!

I’m so thankful for the opportunity to enter my story in the Stories of Life competition. It gave me the opportunity to reflect on the gifts God has given me and the way he uses difficult circumstances to teach us lessons of patience, humility and love. And for that, I am thankful.

If you haven’t read Liz’s story, grab a copy of Three Dummies in a Dinghy or head over to our archives to listen to past Stories of Life.

Could your story be published in the 2019 Stories of Life anthology? We have writing resources to help you get started. Sign up for our Editing Workshop on 13 June or check out our categories and send us your story. We’d love to hear from you.