Friday, March 31, 2017

Stories

Hello readers, assuming you're still out there. I am back after a few months away from my blog. There have been so many things going on in my life. And so many times that I have experienced little bursts of insight, wisdom, or general wonderment that I have wanted to share with the world, or at least our little corner of the world. But somehow those moments passed by in a blur of activity before my hands could settle in on the keyboard.

It reminds me of what Elizabeth Gilbert says in her book Big Magic. She talks a lot about the relationship between creative energy and the creator. She believes that the thing you are creating, whatever it is, really wants to be made. Inspiration will keep tapping on your shoulder until you give it proper attention or until it gives up and finds another source that is willing and able to bring it into being.

That is definitely the case with my blog. I have had so many ideas come to me lately, and I have even jotted down a few notes on each topic. But then I never seem to find the time to sit down and write the whole story. A few weeks later I will inevitably come across an article on a similar topic and think to myself "Darn, I could have written that!"

I can't say that I have been too busy to write these past few months. I don't like to use the word 'busy' because it has a negative connotation for me. I was 'busy' when I was working at my corporate job. I was 'busy' when I was running around in a haze of codependency trying to fill everyone else up before taking care of myself. In fact, I was so busy during those times that I was too busy to focus on the things that really mattered. Luckily, those days are behind me, at least for the most part. 

But I have been distracted from my blogging by a variety of circumstances, some of them good and some of them not so good. On the positive side, my writing business has been growing. I have four clients now, which means I am usually writing something professionally each day. I really love my job. Being a professional writer has changed my perspective on writing. By the end of the day, my eyes are tired from staring at the computer screen and my brain is exhausted from thinking about what to say. Even if I have a great idea for my blog, I just don't have the energy to work on it.

On the weekends I get to experience life in the slow lane with Mark Johnson. There is a certain fluidity to our time together. We are experts at losing track of a day. Sometimes we'll get lost in conversation, reading our books, writing in our journals or whatever else we stumble into. We might plan an outing to a museum or take a walk in the park if we feel the need to get out of the house. But mostly we like to stay in and relax. We are happy introverts who have found a sanctuary together. In fact, that is one of the topics I really want to write more about. I just finished reading a book about introverts called Quiet by Susan Cain. I promise to share more of that with you sometime.

There is another aspect of my life, which is quite the opposite of my life with Mark Johnson. A few times a month I go back to Michigan to visit my family. My time in Michigan is usually very chaotic. No matter what I have planned for those days, there are always some unexpected surprises. Everyone operates on a really tight schedule with multiple synchronized pick-ups and drop-offs for my nieces and nephews that must be executed daily, like a well-oiled machine. If one thing goes wrong, it throws the entire plan out of balance.

I used to live at a frenzied pace like that all the time, but now that I have slowed my life down, it feels overwhelming when I have to jump in and help. A few weeks ago, my sister was out of town for a business trip and I had to fill in for an entire week. I have no idea how I got it all done. At the end of each day I was barely able to make dinner before collapsing onto my couch.

And most recently, my Dad has been sick. It is too hard to explain all the details. We are still trying to understand it ourselves. But it has changed everything in a really short time frame. Just two months ago he was able to drive, go to the store, take care of my nieces and nephews after school, and a whole bunch of other stuff. Right now, he can't do any of those things. Everyone is still trying to figure out exactly how to handle it. At the same time we are dealing with worry and fear about the future. I am not ready to lose my Dad just yet. I guess no one is really ever ready for that.

So, here I am. Back at the computer typing this blog for all of you. I guess I'm really typing it for myself. One of the things I have learned about being an introvert is that I tend to process things better in writing. So many of the stories I have written here in the past have helped me to understand myself, my choices, my relationships, and the world around me a little better.

I miss writing my blog. I miss sharing my stories and discovering myself along the way. I miss the feeling of contentment after I have created something that is uniquely my own voice. I'm not sure when I'll be back again, but hopefully it will be soon. I have a lot more stories to share.

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