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Sunday, November 6, 2011

My Latest Excuse for Not Writing, and a Good One, Too

Here’s my latest excuse for not writing.  My spouse had knee replacement surgery.  Boy, was that an ordeal.  And it was no picnic for him, either.  That was almost a month ago, and he’s just now able to hobble around without assistance, and, thank goodness, to drive.  For a couple of weeks there, my life consisted of driving back and forth to visit him at the hospital, then at the rehab place.  I use the term “visiting” loosely.  Most of the time, James was out of it.  He couldn’t carry on a coherent conversation, and he couldn’t remember anything, even if it just happened.  It was like a premature peek at senility.  Yikes.  Not ready for that quite yet.  Much to the relief of both of us, his mind went back to normal once they cranked down the pain meds.  Then when he finally came home, I was busy doing things like cooking him special meals, running to the store for this or that, carting him to physical therapy appointments and doctor visits, and shopping for medical equipment.  Plus, I had to do the things he normally does around the house.  Like take the trash out, mow the lawn, clean the pond filter, and manage the sprinkler system.  (I didn’t even know where the controls were.)  Needless to say, I didn’t have time or energy to do a lot of my usual activities, including writing.  I know I’m whining.  I know James had it a lot worse than I did.  Now he’s much better and both our lives can get back to “normal.” 

So now I can get back to writing.  When I don’t write I feel restless and dissatisfied.  There’s a vague awareness that I’m not doing something I should be doing.  Maybe this is what they mean by wasting your gifts.  Not that I’m any Jane Austen, but if I have any talents at all worth developing, it’s probably writing.  So when I avoid it I feel untethered, drifting nowhere when I should be headed toward a destination.  It nags at me. 

When I do write, I feel good.  The day is lighter and so is my mood.  I feel I’m fulfilling my destiny, or at least slogging along the road toward it.  Sort of like the pioneers heading west.  There are distractions and obstacles along the way, Indians to fight off, food to hunt, sick children to tend, wagon wheels to repair.  Still, the pioneer forges ahead, even if the vision ahead is as vague and misty as a distant mountain range.  Even if they don’t make it to the land of their dreams and have to settle down somewhere along the way.  Maybe just attempting the journey is the most important thing.

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