Category Archives: A Writer’s Mind

The Inevitable Come-down from Christmas and that New Year’s Resolution List

OK so it happened again. There was a definite come-down two days after Christmas for me. Did it happen to you, too? This was a particularly zen holiday so that makes it worse. I didn’t Scrooge one second this year. But since I was a chubby cheeked toddler and all the Christmases in between the come-down creeps in. Like New Year’s morn when your head is pounding and the clock to punch back in at work is ticking furiously.

I know the holidays aren’t great for everyone. But can I wax mystical about mine this year? Just for a minute.

It was so peaceful. None of my perfectionism reared its ugly annoying little sharp-tongued monster head. My son said it was “The best Christmas ever!” He says that every year but for some reason I think he meant it most this time. We saw lots of family and friends and also had quiet time at home. Our usual traditions still intact (although our fave Indian restaurant was closed on Christmas Eve so we had Thai instead. And they gave me a gift of hugging hippo salt and pepper shakers!) Me and my son’s dad, or as I will now call him my co-parent, had a truly lovely time together. Like old friends again. No stress. No high expectations. And the weather was fabulous.

So I had my little come-down pity party after. I had a short cry in the shower. It would have lasted longer if “Cat’s In the Cradle” had shuffled on my iPod.

Now onto the list. There have been years where I was like, “I’m not gonna participate in making that ridiculous resolution list. They all list-fully fall away in a matter of months or even weeks anyhow.”

But in my concerted effort to continue the forward motion of zen, I shall make one this year for sure. So off the top of my clear head here it is.

  • Lower my expectations and put a pillow on top of the mouth of the perfectionism monster.
  • Give gratitude. Every day. And infiltrate this into my son’s brain as well.
  • Have more game nights.
  • Less technology. Or at least stop bringing my phone to the dinner table. And infiltrate this into my son’s brain as well.
  • Write more.
  • Balance work-life. Try to stave off exhaustion and have a dinner party once in awhile.
  • Get to the beach more. Even if just for 30 minutes to watch the sunset.
  • Let go of the things I can’t control, like my son being an almost teenager and not loving all the things I like to do.

So there it is. I’m sure I could add more but I’ll stop now. Eight is my favorite number anyway. The first and the last on the list are definitely the most difficult.

I’ll refer back to this list in times of turmoil. And look back to the zen of Christmas holiday 2016. What are your resolutions? I’d love to know.

And oh yes, I wish you a beautiful 2017. Happy New Year!

 

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Post It

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It’s been over 2 months since I’ve written. I’ve sat down at my computer multiple times since then and just stared at the blank, white screen. But nothing. I can’t type a word. I’ll think of a dozen ideas and lines when I’m biking, driving, scouring the aisles at the grocery store, walking up the gravel drive toward the classroom to work. But at the computer, NOTHING.

I don’t like writing about not being able to write. I’ve done it several times on this blog. But what’s a writer’s blocked mind to do?

I’m hoping at least this will unclog the faucet and let something flow again.

It’s been one crazy 2+ months. So much so that I can’t even divulge it all. Let’s just say I’ve dealt with death, loss, sickness, physical pain, emotional pain, disappointment, anger, sadness, despair, sometimes all those negatives at once. Most of it being out of my control, which makes it that much worse.

However,  among all that imperfection and just plain suckiness a warm blanket covers me with children’s hugs that squeeze me from the core, family support I forgot I had, the kind ear of friends, a rogue, sweet birdsong in the middle of a dark silence.

I told one of my dear friends if we don’t have Hope, we have nothing. There is always hope here, even in somber moments when the only faucet flowing are the salty tears plopping down my neck.

I’m grateful for so many things. There is light and laughter and happiness. And that’s what keeps me, all of us, afloat.

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Fearless

When the blank screen stares back at you poker-faced, Daily Prompt to the rescue…

Fearless.

I won’t say I am completely fearless or fearful. Although there was a time when I was so fearful to get out in the world I had to psyche myself up just to go into the grocery store.

I felt I would pass out or embarrassingly yell out random explicatives under the blinding fluorescent lighting and rows and rows of strangers and stacked food products.

When I was younger I was afraid to swim in murky water, be it lakes or oceans. All I could think of were the snakes and sharks and piranha that might be gliding by, waiting to pierce the flesh of my feet.

And I have never quite gotten over my fear of diving. The time in the Mediterranean sea when I lost my bikini top pretty much robbed me of ever going head first into water.

Flying was a real chore for a number of years. And public speaking? I’d rather slice my toe and pour hot sauce all over it.

So I guess you’d say I have a number of fears lurking underneath. Most I have either conquered or learned to deal with.

Two weeks ago I went to Busch Gardens, a zoo/theme park which boasts some of the most thrilling coasters in the country. I hadn’t been on one in years. Back in my teens and twenties I rode any state fair ride that rolled off the highway. As the years went by my equilibrium and necessity for survival kept me from enjoying them anymore.

With a little liquid encouragement and the desire to make memories impress my now thrill-seeking little boo, I went on some of the craziest rides ever. I screamed like a little girl being chased by swarms of wasps.

I loved it.

There’s one that rises 335 feet, rotates and dangles you facing the ground below, then drops. I rode that one twice.

I never want to live in fear. Fear is paralyzing. Fear disables meaningful life experiences and the rush that comes with it.

Of course we don’t want to be stupid. I wear my seatbelt. I floss. I look both ways before crossing the street.

But swimming in the ocean, flying to see a close relative, watching my almost 12-year-old look at me with happiness and pride– those are things I will not let fear steal from me.

What are your fears? Do you have some you have painstakingly overcome? I’d love to hear your story…

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/fearless/

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 Photo courtesy of YouTube.com

 

 

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Get the Balance Right

Is it possible to ever get the balance right? Things are off-kilter, ignored, put off, unattainable at the moment, time the ever opponent. My perfectionist personality does not help. Failure is no longer an option and neither is guilt or self-deprecation. It is what it is. And I’m sorry to those of you I have not connected with lately.

Eighteen hours a day working, sleeping, prepping for the two. Which leaves six for chores, errands, food prep, quality time with little Boo, exercise, meditation/prayer/gratitude, and personal hygiene/beauty. So what has fallen by the wayside? Writing. Creating. Connecting with friends and family. Shaving.

And I’m a horrible phone person. I rarely pick up the phone. I have been reprimanded about this at various times. I don’t love the phone. I can’t read the lips of the person speaking on the other line. Can’t see their body language. Hell sometimes can’t hear what they are saying. And because of the demands of life I am a multi-tasker (like so many of us these days). It is easier to have conversations via text with several people at the same time while doing the laundry, dishes, hitting the can. But yes I am fully aware that an uninterrupted phone conversation is important. And I am calling my mom as soon as I finish this.

I made time to catch the sunset on the beach twice this week. It had been too long. Today I am writing. Tomorrow I will catch up with an old friend.

When little Boo was a baby I knew that phase of our lives would be fleeting. There were days that were long and filled with crying and poop, but in between those moments were the giggles and cuddles and chubby legs learning to walk. Now that baby is almost as tall as me and it happened in the swish of a horse’s tail.

I am forever grateful that I am able to see him daily as I assistant teach in his classroom. This will be a year looked upon with great pride and nostalgia when he is out of my daily sights and starting his own career and path in life.

So when I think about all the things I can’t seem to find the time or energy to accomplish I need to cut myself a freaking break. We do what we can.

I was alone when I viewed this spectacular sunset. Now let’s watch it together : )

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Taken with iPhone 5, west coast FL, no editing.

 

 

 

 

 

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Repetitive Thoughts= Birth of Creativity or Insanity?

If I wrote the same thing over and over would it start to somehow make sense? Would what I really want to write, what is in there as far as fiction is concerned, finally make its appearance?

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It is very difficult for me to find the time to write most weekdays and some weekends. But with this week off for Thanksgiving/Fall break I have actually had the time and have sat down every single morning to create.

It’s not that I am unhappy with what I’ve written. Not at all. I would just love that itch of writing fiction again to be scratched. But it’s been so long I don’t know quite how to start.

I don’t want to go all insane like Jack.

So I’ll just have this slightly embarrassing blog talk to anyone who happens to read. Thanks for listening.

All work and no play……

 

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