I still have terrible writer’s block. The sequel to my novel is open in a side window on my laptop. It’s glaring at me. And I’m not there yet. Why I don’t know since I was completely possessed and immersed in the first one and it served as an outlet and a confidence builder in 2007.
So I will write about something else. I’ll ramble. I’ll get wordy. I’ll make it about ME. Until the fiction muses visit me again and purr instead of chant obscenities in my ear.
I’m not getting this life skill. Sigh. Living in the moment. Not fussing about the future (will my kids grow up okay; will I have enough money to retire, ever; my health worries; my career worries; what will break next in the house; how I need more friends; how my miss my far away friends; how I need to see my mother more; how I really want to travel, but I don’t know how to pull that off; how to best deal with my ex and our parenting differences (co-parenting is a joke)… and my list goes on.
Yet when I am sick, I make these idle promises that I WILL be more grateful for all that I have when I get better. That I won’t take my health for granted. That I will make friends with this body, that gave birth to an 11# baby and then a 10# one, instead of hating it for not living up to some societal (and my own) expectations of perfection.
I’ve read “How to Be Happy Dammit” and scores of other books on self-acceptance and meditation and self-worth books. They work for a day as my ingrained thinking will not let go of its hold on me. Where does this self-hatred and negativity come from? My earliest memory of it is when I was nine and in a horse show in PA. I’d failed miserably at a round of jumps and was calling myself stupid and horrible at it. There’s even a photo of me, my best friends and my dad, standing at the riding ring fence as she tried to explain to me that it was just a bad day. I think I was about 11 then.
Middle school for me was terrible. My nickname was horse fit and snot head, having been caught picking my nose. Is middle school ever good for any child?
And why do some kids stay resilient and believe in themselves. While others don’t. I was lacking in resilience. In high school, I was fat. Never dated. Never went to a prom.
And yet. That resilience appeared when I went through a divorce that ripped me up inside. At the base of it was this odd knowing that I was going to be okay. That splitting up from my kids’ dad would eventually be the best thing for us. That I could no longer live in a relationship that turned me into someone I didn’t know.
And nearly 8 years later. I am still becoming me. There’s a lot to be undone. 15 years of losing myself. My new (four years) husband is “retraining” me. Teaching me that I am enough. Just as I am. That me in the morning isn’t a hairy goat woman from Hell. That I am valued and special just for being me. That I won’t be yelled at for a minor infraction. That I am NOT his parent.
The solution I think, is to put myself out there more. To get involved in things that aren’t about ME. I never had the space for this before, nor the confidence to think that what I offered strangers… soon to be friends…. could be valued and appreciated. As an introvert, this will take me way out of my comfort zone. And I do mean way out. How does one make friends at the age of 51?
Indeed. First world problems.