Until death do us part

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It’s Tuesday morning.  It’s been my norm for years and years to get up early.  Very early.  Usually between 4:30 – 5am.  Since I decided to retire early – last December – I’ve gotten into the habit of sleeping in late.  Well, late for me.  I usually wake up around 7am.  This was alarming to me at first.  I felt shame and guilt.  I felt lazy.  As my Mom used to say to me, “half the day is gone!”  It must be an Irish thing.  She used to get up early.  For as long as I can remember, she was up before the sunrise.   She would have half of her housework done by 7am.  But, I’ve gotten used to the luxury of sleeping in “late.”

So, its morning.  I’m having coffee.  I’m sitting at my kitchen counter and looking at a blank, white screen in front of my sleepy eyes.  My blog is calling to me. It pulls me in.  But for the past few months I’ve had a sort of writers block.  Clark says I’m forcing it – that when I’m ready to write again, it will come naturally.  Like it always has.  And, he’s right.

Brian – my youngest son – has said to me in the past that when I don’t have anything to write about, perhaps it’s because I have not been doing anything “write worthy”.  He’s observant.  I believe this to be the case of my self-proclaimed block.

 

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I could chalk it up to the transition of summer into fall if I really needed a scapegoat.  The changing of the seasons.  The fault could be laid at the heels of that happy sad place we find ourselves in when saying goodbye to one season and welcoming in the next.  I always feel a little bit melancholy as the seasons change.   And when I’m melancholy, I tend to take a break from writing.  Oh, the changing seasons is a cycle of life that I love – one that I really do not think I could live without witnessing year in and out, but still, it’s a constant reminder of how fast time goes.  The seasons speed by.  You blink your eyes and time flies.  Really, it would be unusual to go through an entire Summer without hearing at least a dozen times…that old familiar phrase..”I can’t believe the Summer is almost over!”  And it’s true.  It’s always a shock to see how fast it went by and how the next season has miraculously arrived without you noticing that it snuck up on you.

But, there it is.  Fresh and new.  A new beginning. A new cycle.  A new Season.   A fresh start.  With all the promise and excitement of what lies ahead for you.  New resolutions. New untapped energy.  Come on New Season…I’m ready!

 

Seasons Change

 

However, If I am going to be honest, my writer’s block could most likely be chalked up to the Clark Factor.  My better half tends to be around the house more than he used to be.  Right now he is upstairs snoozing.  He took the day off.  In all honesty, he takes a lot of time off of work these days.  He is somewhat semi retired.  He usually golf’s on the days he is not working, but I had a mini empty-Nester melt down last week and accused him of not wanting to spend time with me.  Suddenly, this week he decided to spend his time off with me rather than hitting the links with his golf buddies.  Coincidence?  Nah, I don’t think so.  But, I didn’t fight it.  I decided to soak in the attention and enjoy spending some quality one on one time with my Hubs!  YaY!!

Booo!!  By noon on the first day that we spent together,  I was wondering what in the world I was thinking when I practically bullied him into spending his day off with me rather than the guys.  In theory, I was going to love having him around!!  Hurray!! Us time!!   In reality, it didn’t quite work out that way.  He was in my space.  All.Day.Long.  It’s not that he was actually doing anything wrong – I just had not realized how much I liked my days to myself and my routine kept in place.  I didn’t want to spend my day running to the hardware store with him.  Or, dropping him off at the car dealership to get his car looked at.  I didn’t want to eat lunch at 10:30am or watch the financial station on TV all morning.  Or worse yet, watch golf on TV.  And, when we went to the grocery store together, it took some getting used to watching him plow the cart down the center of the aisle and getting into some sort of freakish road rage event with the other shoppers.  *Holy Cow!!*

By 3pm that day, I started to suspect that he was purposely trying to tick me off so I would beg him to please.. please, for the sake of our marriage…go golfing!!!  And, I did.  I told him to go golf with his friends.  He was happier,  I was happier.  I realized that having him around gave me an odd sense of feeling all out of whack.

Slowly (and Thank Goodness!!)  eventually he reverted back to his old ways.  I once again became a (happy) golf widow.  And more importantly, I was able to write again.  He still hangs around somewhat in the early mornings before he heads out for his day with the guys, but that’s a compromise I can live with. 

So now, these days when I am happily alone at home and carrying on with my usual routine, I wonder about what full retirement will be like.  How do retiree’s do it?  How do they learn to live together all day long without driving each other crazy??  Is it something that simply takes getting used to?  And if so, how long is the transition period?

I Love My Hubs!!  He’s my better half and my soul-mate and for better or worse, he’s my best friend!!  Until Death Do us part!!!  But, I pull my hair out when he’s around all day.  I feel like I’m losing my ever-lovin’ mind!!  I can not be the only one who goes nuts when your loved one suddenly decides to spend the day with you.  Can I?


 

 

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writer’s block

writers-block-1024x768This past week I realized that too much time has gone by since my last blog post.  It was time to sit down and write.

Writing seems to come naturally to me when I am under stress or pressure.  Or in the midst of some kind of major issue or drama in my life.  Ideas and thoughts pop into my head and I feel an uncontrollable need to jot them down.  Immediately.  I will drop everything I am doing and go to my PC.  My fingers tend to have a mind of their own.  The words flow from my mind through my hands and onto a white screen.

But right now I am not under stress or pressure.  The harder I try to come up with a topic, the bigger my writers block becomes.  Writers block ?? ~ Already?

A few weeks ago I told Bruce that I thought I needed a writing desk.  I thought it would be a smart purchase!  Yes, every great writer needs a place to compose their great fictional works.  OK, so I have only been a writer for a few months.  But I could get up early in the morning, start a pot of coffee and sit in my new makeshift office.  Beautiful!

Thinking back now, I probably should have just ordered one from online when I was in my online shopping mode.  That phase has now passed.  The urgent need I felt for a desk no longer feels so urgent.

So I hunker down at the kitchen table where I always tend to go to when I have something pressing I feel the need to share with the world.  When I don’t have a particular idea or theme to write about, I tend to get easily distracted.  I’ll see something from the corner of my eye out the window.  Oh, look at that beautiful red Cardinal!  Didn’t I just read this week that seeing one in flight was good luck?  Then I will notice Joe and Dee’s house right beyond the tree where I saw the cardinal.  Hmmm, I wonder how those two are doing?  Didn’t Joe tell Bruce and I that he was retiring this spring? 

Back to my blog.  I look down at the white screen in front of me.  I’m itching to write.  I feel at home behind my keyboard when composing my thoughts.  It’s a peace and a comfort to me.  It’s a sense of accomplishment.  I’ve always wanted to write a book.  Have always been told I should write a book.  Friends have told me, “I’d buy your book!”

That could be fun!  I could have a book signing!  I can imagine myself sitting behind a little desk.   Hidden behind my little pile of books.  Pen clenched in my sweaty hands.  Smiling brightly at every would-be buyer who strolled past.  It would be like having one of my party’s where I naively decided not to put an RSVP on the invite.  What if nobody showed up??  {How terrifying}

Oh ~ Back to my blog.  Still a white page in front of me.  For now, Im stuck.

So why the writers block all of a sudden?  I have read that it is the censor in our brain.  Our self-critic.  Sometimes that censor is bigger than we are. It says to us,  you have nothing that anyone really wants to read about right now.  I’ve also read that some of the greatest writers in literature – Leo Tolstoy, Virginia Woolf, Ernest Hemingway – were tormented by momentary lapses in their ability to produce text.  If it can happen to them, of course it is going to happen to me!  Relief!  It is temporary!

10082454-FB~Girl-in-a-Flower-Print-Dress-High-Heels-Headscarf-and-Sunglasses-Steps-out-of-a-Convertible-Car-PostersMy new strategy….I will start to carry a notepad with me.  How many times have I been stopped at a red light or been driving in my car when a great idea has hit me?  Oh!  I need to remember this so I can write about it when I get home!!  By the time I finally did get home, all I remembered was that I had a great idea. So now I will jot down the idea at the red light.

This new strategy of mine was a smashing success!  I’d sit at the stop light and jot down all of my fabulous ideas.  I probably looked like someone very important to everyone around me.  I had pen and paper in hand!  I had big sunglasses on!  Next time I’d wear a fancy scarf!  HONK HONK!  Sheeesh, who’s honking?  In my rush to look up from paper to rear view mirror, I knocked my sunglasses sideways on my face.  Who knew red lights were so short?  Who knew there were so many people out there in such a hurry to get to where they are going? {Aha! An Idea! Must write about Road Rage!}

Bruce told me my best writing was when I did not have to try to think of a topic.  He told me it was not something that could be forced.  He was right.  When I am inspired by someone or something, I sit down and it is like my hands have a mind of their own.  I can finish a post in about 15 minutes.  And I am usually pleased with the outcome.

I wonder tho ~ was my writing just a venue that helped to keep my mind occupied the past months during a disastrous time in my life?  Now that my storm has passed, I’ve slowly gotten back into my old routine. Writing has taken a back seat again.  It was a productive way to deal with tragedy.  One door was closed, a window was opened.

And you know what?  I love looking out this window.  Who knew I’d feel so at home and love what I was seeing?  I like what I can see on the horizon in the far off distance.  It’s fresh and it’s new.  It  keeps me on my toes.  So for now, I wait.  I wait for the next idea to hit me.  And it will.  I may be in the line at the grocery store or I may be on one of my long walks, but it will come to me.  It always does.