Lately, I’ve done very little writing, which, as writers know, is a cardinal sin. They say even when you don’t feel inspired, we should practice our craft daily. And so, after not posting for the past two weeks, my internal dialogue gave me a thrashing.
“You call yourself a writer?”
At first, I succumbed, responding:
But then, I rallied back, because everyone needs a break. Of course, I miss the connection with my readers, using words to entertain and soothe. I miss the excitement of sending an essay into the world wondering how it will be received, and whether I will change someone’s life – or even a small moment. But this week – for one final week – I decided all of that could wait. And so, I will, once again, remain silent.
It’s not that I haven’t wanted to write, nor that I have no material. In fact, this is likely a blip in time when I’ve felt more emotional than ever. Because, after spending every day with Autumn for three months, it’s ending. And no one wants to read a teary-eyed, somber essay about kids growing up too fast and wishing things were different. (If, in fact, you do, check out a few of my previous posts.) And even if there were an audience for that type of material, I don’t feel like penning it. It feels too hard and depressing. So instead, I will refrain from recounting the nights spent worrying about how–and when–we’ll adjust to our new routine, the loss that comes with the passage of milestones, and the fear of missing out. Instead, I will spend my time practicing the trite art of finding gratitude. It’s cheesy, but I’m otherwise remiss at how to cope with going from full-time mom to full-time mom and teacher. It’s too unbearable, and also, ridiculously dramatic. After all, unlike my friends sending kids to college, I will still see her every day.
At the moment, I have far more important things to do than dwell and write about said dwelling. I am busy swallowing the last bits of summer in the form of ice-cream and prepping class lists. I am planning weekend adventures and savoring every cuddle. And also, whenever I feel like complaining, I’m being thankful:
For the bags under my eyes because they show I’ll sleep when I’m dead
For the annoying alarm at 5:05 am because it means I have a job that affords me my life
For the park district classes we won’t be taking because we are on a path paved especially for us
For the laundry piling up because it means we have clothes
For feeling melancholy because I finally have someone to miss
For a dentist appointment when I have a million other things to do because it means I have access to healthcare—and teeth!
For the lack of shower pressure in my new house because I’m helping the environment
For the knots in my stomach because they mean I care
And also, for the freedom I’ve given myself to skip a few weeks of blogging because we need to show the same compassion for ourselves that we do for everyone else. And because sometimes, the best gift we can give is permission to stumble and the patience to, once again, find solid ground.