Archive | June 2016

New Project

I decided to do a new project in case my bipolar mss doesn’t pan out–I’m typing in all my food columns from my Good Taste work into the computer and see if I can cobble a manuscript out of it.  So far I’m in April for my year-long look at columns I did over my time with the Rankin Ledger.  I should have about 50 total.  I’m just doing the columns instead of the features because they are so dated and only involved local people.  I am writing what it was like for me how to learn to cook.  I’m thinking about calling it “Teaching This Southern Girl How to Cook:  A Food Memoir”.A lot of my columns talked about me growing up and such so I think it may make a viable memoir project.  We will see.

I have a deadline to finish it before Disney since there is a contest I want to send it to that ends June 30.  So I am really working hard to get it all typed in.  Doing a lot of running this week with Switch Week for my youngest, and tutoring, and dance practice.   But it’s better than her sitting and watching TV all day.  So we are having fun with it so far.

Hope everyone is having a good week.  Happy reading!

 

Bad Mood

I’m just in a bad mood today. I know I don’t say that often, but I am. I can’t settle down to doing anything in particular and am mad at myself that I can’t seem to write when I have the free time to. I’m sleepy and tired but just grumpy feeling as well. I went and booked myself a massage for Thursday and hopefully that will ease down my lower back pain somewhat.  I’ve got plenty new to read but I don’t want to.  I just want to sleep.

 

Switch Week and VBS

So the older daughter is working Vacation Bible School and the younger one is attending Switch Week, which is kind of VBS for older children.  Waiting for them to get home.

Finished cleaning out the laundry room–I threw away so many unmatched socks.  They were everywhere.   But it’s all ready to be painted next week so I am looking forward to that.  Finally getting rid of this green color that was all over the house when we bought it.  Painting the kitchen, kids’s den, laundry, and half-bath.

I really made myself tired today.  Im not used to doing so much a one time.  I think maybe I need to slow down the rest of the day.

I think I will lie down for a little while.  Then see if anyone else has posted in our classs for the summer.  See if I did it right or wrong. Have a great week, everybody!

 

 

 

Cleaning

I’ve decided today is the day for tackling my laundry room. I’m enlisting the help of my youngest one because I know I can’t do it alone.  So once I get through typing, I’ll get started, I guess.

(Now everyone is going to see how much longer I type, putting it off even more 🙂

(I also had to finish my orange juice. So that’s done.)

Anything else? I don’t think so.  Today’s been a good day.  I finished PT yesterday and feel much better.   I have a new story to work on.  I have more reading for my class. So life is just moving on.  THanks to all of you who read me this week. I appreciate the support.  Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend.

(NOW I’m going to go do the laundry room.  Wish me luck.)

 

Dodgeball

I have to play dodgeball to have my writing space.

I have to dodge the kids.  They’re old enough to know that once I sit down at the computer, I’m more or less inaccessible.  So the older one goes upstairs to her room and the youngest turns on the TV.  That means I have to dodge the guilt.  Why can’t I be a normal mom and do things with my kids?  Because I want to write, that’s why.

I have to dodge writer’s blocks; my own id, ego, and superego; and the doubt.  Anne Lamott likened it to two hard-rock stations blaring in your ears at the same time from different sides of the earphones.  One side of my mouth says it will all be worth it someday. The other counts the minutes I spend typing against all the productive things I could be doing.  At least when I write nonfiction no one can tell me to change my plots, characters, or settings.  All that is left is negotiating the details.  So that makes doing this all easier.  They (the voices in my head) can’t argue with me if all I write about are the facts.

The doubt is the worst.  The inner doubt isn’t so bad anymore—it/s amazing what a few publishing credits does for your confidence.  But other people’s doubts hurt.  The editors that reject, the friends that wonder how long you’re going to stick with the “writing thing”.  You wondering if your dad asking how it’s going is out of concern or derision.

I write every day.  I have a blog I keep up daily except on weekends.  I write for class—analysis, creative writing, discussion pieces.  I send out pieces about three times a week. New stuff, old stuff, simultaneous submissions–hoping to catch a break some place that will pay off somewhere down the road.  I write what I have to and what I want to—a nice balance at this point.

I have to dodge other tosses to claim my writing space in my life.  Like chores—laundry, cleaning, cooking meals.  Obligations–taxicabbing my children around, going to church, working in the food pantry, going to the doctor or the hairdresser or to lunch with a friend,   I write in spurts—while the kids are gone to their grandmother’s or to school, once they’re asleep, in between conversations with my husband, who is a regular citizen with a regular job that allows me to do this writing thing in the first place.   I’m grateful and guilty at the same time.  I think of the Toni Cade Bambara quote–“I do not have anything profound to offer mother-writers or worker-writers except to say that it will cost you something.”  What is my writing costing me?

But then I think about what it is giving me—such as readers around the world with my blog.   People who write me and tell me I’m funny, or I’m right, or that they just like my stuff.  People who say my story helps them. And the clarity of mind that I get out of writing about my days every day—about myself in nonfiction and my characters in fiction.  How I sort through my problems by writing about them, either privately in my journal or publicly on the blog.  Writing is my thing—sometimes the only thing I can ever get right on a daily basis.

So even with everything I dodge, I still write.  Every day, a little or a lot. If I can, you can, too.  So get to it.  Dodge that ball.  Just write.

 

Ending

I saw a psychiatrist every day for a few minutes.  He wasn’t my regular doctor, who was still out of town. But he seemed nice and competent enough. I told him my story about losing my mood stabilizer, Abilify, when we changed insurance companies in October and described the long slow slide I had been on ever since then.  I told him we had tried Geodon, Xanax, Lexapro, and an increased dose of Pristiq (my antidepressant) to replace it.  But here I was.

Bob had told me before I went in that if it came down to it, we’d just start paying the $1,000-a-month bill for the correct medicine.  That was reassuring and terrifying at the same time.  How long could we afford to do that? Was I that desperately sick without it?  It seemed that I was.

I stayed this time for five days.  All the doctor had to do was restart my Abilify.  By the time I left, I was thinking logically again and glad that I had had the courage to go to the hospital when I needed to—and that the doctor I saw on my hospitalization filed paperwork that convinced my insurance company to cover my Abilify through the year 2039.  So it was worth it to call and go in if for that reason alone.

Yes, if you go to the mental ward, you lose your physical freedom for a period of time.  Yes, you miss your family and the comforts of home.  Yes, you are deprived of many of your personal coping mechanisms.  But it’s not as scary a process as it could be, thanks to modern pharmacological treatment methods designed to take you down from your psychosis and give you clarity of mind.