Monday, January 26, 2015

The alternative to the alternative

I'm not sure if it's where we're at in the cycle of the moon or where I'm at in my own cycle.

Maybe it's boredom or fatigue or the absence of a routine to anchor our days and weeks. Though, equally, it could be because we're on the cusp of the start of the academic year and the brink of the unknown.

Or perhaps it could be the slow realisation that I am not going back to my day job and that new responsibilities are coming and accountabilities are required. Indubitably the fact that all this is new and not everyone realises how important it is, has something to do with it. I'm sure the fact that I haven't had much time to myself, let alone time to write, is a big BIG part of it. (And I realise I haven't told you much about any of that but I promise I will very soon.)

I'm also wondering if I'm getting a bit overwhelmed by some of the research I've been doing for my writing and for my life. The shoulds have really set in and got me questioning pretty much... everything.

Also, I miss The Colbert Report. Particularly the bit where my husband and I hang out every night on the couch and watch something we both really enjoy and actually learn something, then chat about it a lot afterwards.

Maybe it's a bit of all of the above or none of it.

I know I am repeating myself when I say that things feel weird. (And I also want to add that I realise I  didn't do my daughter or myself justice in my last post. "As far as I could see, she was having a meltdown because I offered to buy her an ice cream." I know this not to be true. She was having a meltdown because I was asking her to make a commitment and stick to it for the rest of the day. And she felt it was too much to ask.)

But mostly, I think I'm having trouble admitting that now is not my time.

Everything feels like a massive effort. From getting out of bed to catching up on blog posts to yet another load of laundry to social interactions which are invariably rather enjoyable to making that lasagne I promised my daughter to making progress on my novel.

I'm having trouble mustering the enthusiasm for anything.

And when I do, it's clunky. I'm tired no matter how much sleep I get. I can hardly arrange my pixels productively on the screen. The laundry-to-available-clothes-horse ratio is imbalanced and a few baskets have to sit overnight in wait, with the result that the DKNY dress I bought in New York two years ago has a massive pink stain on the shoulder. The timing of social interactions gets thrown by little people who refuse to nap, or cancelled due to PMS. I make a special trip to the grocery store to by the onions that I need, then make another for lasagne sheets, then realise that our lasagne dish broke last September. I can't even think about the novel, let alone make progress on it.

And, of course, my stinking mood is made even more laughable by the fact that these are all first world problems and hardly blips on life's radar.

Also, the alternative is obvious, right?

I mean, a sane person would be resting right about now. Reflecting, rejuvenating, maybe even managing a bit of gratitude for all they have. If highly evolved, they might even choose to do all the things they feel resentful about in an attempt to reframe the situation and step back into the driver's seat.

But, today, I am reminded of my magnificent friend Max's question: what are you willing to release now?

And the answer makes its way to me through the fug.

I release the need to try and understand what's happening to me now. Because I release the compulsion to try and fix it. Because I release the idea that I need fixing. And I release the blame and shame I have for being a person who feels like she needs fixing.

Because a lot of humans, especially woman ones, feel this way. And I release the notion that I should be any better different.

This post is in response to the second prompt of the Reverb14 reflective writing challenge. All prompts can be found here; you are warmly invited to share your response and link to it in the comments below, if you feel called to do so. 

The next opportunity to connect in this way is April Moon and we'd love to have you join us!

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