This time of year is hard for me.
I’m tired – but not regular tired – shall I call it Winter-tired? My bones don’t want to work with my muscles to do anything. My brain is a mess. My heart is heavy.
As beautiful as this seemingly continuously falling snow is…my eyes see it but the beauty has a hard time penetrating beneath my skin.
Tuesday morning I had a mini-breakdown. Oscar puked all over our bed…I spilled an open pop all over the kitchen floor…lunches needed to be made…I just couldn’t keep it together.
Poor Meeps had fear in her gorgeous eyes. “Are you okay, Mommy?” She kept asking. I could only shake my head ‘no’ lest I burst into tears. So I held them in until I dropped the kids off at school then I lost it in the car.
Super hot fat tears shooting out my eyes and soaking my cheeks. Snot dripping out of my nose. It was…a lot of releasing. Thank you to CLM for following his best-friend instinct to call me, and receive all my shi*t. I yelled and cried. He listened and offered wisdom. I blathered about unfinished basements and messy dining room tables…about feeling hungry and hating the voices in my head…about being tired of feeling strapped for money. He listened more. I finally got it all out. I felt better after I got it all out. Then I felt guilty for even complaining and feeling sad-sack. ‘First-world problems’ kept screaming in my head…I dislike the term…but I feel the guilt of it strongly. I don’t want to deny myself feelings but I also want to learn to see things differently so my feelings don’t pile up and explode.
I sat alone in my car and let myself reflect on what just happened.
I wrapped my brain around the context of my life over the last few weeks.
It’s a new year. The sky has been mostly grey. I haven’t been sleeping well. I’m changing my diet. It’s so damn cold. Physio is going well but my body is always sore. And, I’ve been binge watching the Netflix series ‘Shameless’.
Now, when I watch a show, I get invested. I didn’t realize how invested in this darn show I was getting. If you haven’t watched it or heard of it before, the gist of it is: an alcoholic/addict father of six wrecks havoc on everyone/thing he deals with. His eldest daughter is the matriarch and does her best to keep herself and the five other kids fed, safe and loved. The stuff that happens to them though – as a family and as individuals – within their family and within their circle of friends is unbelievable. I can’t believe half the stuff I see. Yet, I couldn’t stop watching.
I felt connected to many of the experiences…remembering some tough times in my childhood and life. I felt so connected that I began to take on actual feelings for this family of Gallaghers. I was consumed with what would happen next, who would hurt whom, and how they’d solve their problems or not.
Sitting in my car, my eyes swollen and my throat sore from yelling and sobbing, I realized three very important things about myself.
a) I needed to stop watching this show until I can watch it without pulling it into my heart and feeling like I’m part of their family.
b) I need to change how I think and feel about money.
c) I’ve been feeling ‘fear’ as a major, constant emotion for as long as I can remember.
I haven’t watched an episode of ‘Shameless’ since Monday. That’s four days. I definitely feel a lighter way of being since I stopped. But I miss it. I miss them. Alas, I need a break.
I’m working on some personal essays about money and fear because I know, like everything important in my world, writing about them, diving into their plot and structure, will help me face them in a way that will motivate change.
I’m almost done chapter one in this bad-boy of a book. It’s blowing my mind. That’s exactly what I need.
I’m not all doom and gloom…I had a great laugh this morning when I was doing my stretches. Oscar sat right in front of me and was so close his nose was up against mine. He had this huge smile on this face, and his eyes were saying: “Oh, did you want space to exercise? Huh. Too bad. Here’s my face. Pet me. Love me.” I laughed hard. Then he spun around and sat on me. We call it ‘Ballsonya’. Like, lasagna, but with balls. Ew. No…not like that at all! One of the ways Oscar shows his love is by sitting directly on me. It’s amazing.
I think I’m a bit depressed. What’s motivating this depression is a recipe of things…and I’m doing my best to find the light…to find my own light and figure out how to shine it outward.
I’m also reading ‘Amy Falls Down’ by Jincy Willet. This book was lent to me by a friend…and I’m so grateful because it’s exactly the book my heart needs right now. I love when that happens. Also, I’m in love with Jincy Willett! What a stellar writer! And, oh boy, do give yourself some time to play and discover and write (!) on her hilarious website. She is six breaths of fresh, fresh air. http://www.jincywillett.com/
On the writing front…I’m in grant/workshop application mode.
Windsor Endowment for the Arts (WEA) – deadline March 9
Arts, Culture & Heritage Fund (ACHF) -Monday, February 19, 2018 to Friday, March 23, 2018 at 3:00 p.m.
Humber Creative Writing Workshop – deadline ongoing – early bird special is June 1st (note: there are scholarships available, but otherwise, this is a paid workshop. $950 and up.)
And…I’m plugging away at my poetry manuscript…that, I am very pleased to announce, has a publisher requesting to see it upon its completion! (No expectations for publication, but it sure does feel amazing to have interest!)
Also, I’m working on submissions for
Chicken Soup for the Soul – submissions ongoing
The Toronto Star Short Story Contest – deadline February 28
March will bring me to four months of waiting on hearing back from several agents about my Hangman novel. I’ve stopped holding my breath, but haven’t given up hope. Thinking I might get on the horn and voice call these folks to see what’s up. #breakingtherules
Motivation is key these days. Some days I fail at it spectacularly – barely able to get out of bed and get dressed. Others, like today, the fire within spreads to my fingertips, and I get shi* did.
I hope you’re well. Reading. Writing. Growing. Loving.
*Shameless photo credit: https://vignette.wikia.nocookie.net/shameless/images/a/aa/SHAMELESS-WIKI-US-CAST.jpeg/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/670?cb=20170126195719