Friday, May 6, 2016

I'm Back (and Grumpier Than Ever.)

It has become clear that I am incapable of maintaining my blog through a semester of teaching.  Between the hectic schedule (we're temporarily a one-car family, which is INSANE), the teaching, the grading, the parenting, the regular life stuff, and ever-present health issues, my good intentions fell down, paving whatever road I was on (we know which one), and I haven't written ANYTHING since January.  I mean no writing.  No fiction, no editing, no blogging, just reading for class and reading freshman papers. (No comment.) It's not been great for my state of mind, but I try to keep my head down and plug away.  The good news is that I posted final grades this morning, and I am a free woman till August.  Actually, I have almost a month until Kiddo is out of school, so I have three-and-a-half weeks of uninterrupted writing time, and dammit, I'm going to make the most of it.  So on this, my first day of freedom, I hauled my lazy, depressed ass to Barnes & Noble, laptop in hand (or in bag, as the case may be), loaded up on sugary goodness (London Fog and a GF marshmallow treat) and got to work.

Why, yes, I do have a filter addiction.  But it's so pretty.

I glanced through my notes and opened up a blank document on my Mac and freaked the *%#@ out. White space is infinitely scarier, more intimidating, when you've been neglecting your craft for months.  I feel like such a slacker.  So I decided to compromise by starting with a little blog entry (instead of ending with it as a reward as I'd earlier planned.)  For some reason, a blank blog screen is so much less frightening.  I think maybe it's the whole give-yourself-permission-to-write-badly thing.  I'm usually much less focused on perfection when I'm tapping out a quick note to my blog buddies.  (Sorry, nothing personal.)  But, it is writing and totally counts, especially on this first day back in the old writing saddle.  My computer is out, and I am practicing ass-in-seat with every ounce of self-control I have left.  (I probably have some to spare today since I didn't use any when ordering in the cafe.)

So what has been going on since January, you ask?  (It's okay if you didn't.  This is just about my continuing to type, remember?)  Well, Kiddo turned six, our cat has morphed into the literal spawn of Satan, I survived another semester (with a brand-new subject), I skipped another Valentine's Day, we killed another vehicle, I read (though not as many books as I'd like), I discovered the skinny London Fog at Starbucks, and I bought a new handbag (not something I do very often.)  Oh wait, I forgot the most important thing: I became completely obsessed with Hamilton.  My six year old now has a preternatural knowledge of Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, and the Revolutionary War in general.  (I read Sarah Vowell's Lafayette and the Somewhat United States during that time as well, which only deepened the whole 18th century America obsession.)  I've also gotten really skilled at muting out the worst of the four-letter words in the musical's soundtrack whenever Kiddo is in the car.  We don't need her going to school and singing about the "Mother@#%*ing Democratic Republicans," now do we?

"Work" indeed.

Health-wise, I've remained in a bit of holding pattern.  Lately, I've been dealing with a med change that hasn't gone exactly as planned (mood swings and electrical-feeling brain zaps, anyone?)  Good times, but I haven't been hospitalized or had a major illness since February, so we're definitely calling that a win.  I still get frustrated by the way in which my health issues limit my lifestyle (and that of my family), but I don't suppose that is going anywhere any time soon.

So, while some things may have changed over the last few months, one very important thing remains the same:  I'm still a grumpy, cranky, get-off-my-lawn old lady who really wants a t-shirt that says, "He's a Komondor.  Yes, his hair is supposed to look like that.  Yes, he can see.  Go ahead and take your picture if it means you'll leave me alone.  No, I can't eat that.  No, I won't ever be joining you at a church event, as every single one is centered on food and people don't take no for an answer.  No, I don't want to talk about my Celiac, and I'm so happy that you once met somebody with a tummy ache which you're certain is the same thing and can be cured by juicing.  And stop thinking it's funny/cute when you (a grown man) tell my child she's going to marry you when she grows up."  

I know.  I'm a freaking ray of sunshine.

I hope this won't be a lone post .  No, I know this won't be a lone post.  I'm committed.  I have plenty to say; I just have to plan so that every post isn't an angry, cranky rant.  For now, though, I've put off that white space long enough.  My fingers and brain are warmed up, and the caffeine from my London Fog is circulating.  Time to get writing.

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