On Tuesday morning I will be flying to California with older daughter to check out the university that she plans to attend. During that time I will not take my laptop with me because I want to take a break from my routine. A routine that encompasses checking my email too many times an hour, and reading too many articles and blogs that often end up making me feel like I have filled my time but not used it. Not taking the laptop is symbolic of my desire to assess what I want out of my life, see what it is that I am doing that is preventing me, see what I do that is helping me, and come up with more ways and things to do that will make me feel more content and purposeful, and maybe even happy.
During this time I will try to take a break from thinking about:
THIS BLOG and how it has not met my expectations. I had hoped to be discovered by an agent or editor who would offer me a book deal for my book (Get Your Words Off Me) or a new book, or a job (paying even) as a columnist. I had hoped, too, that I would be a success—according to the numbers. While I have not met any of those goals, I have met others, but still there is a very strong sense of failure. And to counter that I need to reassess what it is that I want to do with this blog and with my writing. By writing I mean “meaning of my life,” because for me that is what writing is: it distills me, it stills me, it defines me to myself. I need to think, too, of other ways to define myself.
In two weeks I will have reached my one year blogiversary. Much has been achieved in this year of which I am quite proud. My writing has improved; even though I still use too many commas, I think that I have depth, style, interest and relevance. I have finally managed to write funny, to reflect a key part of myself. I have written almost every day on a range of subjects; I did not have trouble finding what to write about. I have had insights from cherished readers and much-needed comfort, too. I have come to believe that I am a writer, and not just say that I want to be a writer or envision myself as a writer. But where to go from here? Do I stay here? Do I challenge myself with writing something longer and more developed that could find itself to a bookstore? Of course, the best thing about the blog was that it wasn’t daunting, it was fun to sit down for a couple of hours writing a post (alternating, of course, with watching tv, doing dishes, cooking, munching and supervising my daughters) so that I never felt that I was facing the almighty blank page. Okay, enough thinking about this here, I need something to do this week.
MEN especially those who don’t respond to my emails and/or my picture. I need to just take a break from being concerned about why someone does not like me and just forget about it. I need to take a breather from worrying about people who I don’t know and who don’t want to get to know me. Talk about a waste of time and an emotional drain.
WORK, or the frustrations of classroom management and my “brusque” personality, and focus instead on what I like about teaching and maybe come up with new ways to interest myself in what I am doing and my students in what I am teaching.
THE HOUSE and how it has not sold in two years. I have done what I could do, the past is past, now I need to charge forward with the new lawyer to get the house sold and get me and my daughters out of this ridiculous situation. But I will neither think of the past nor the present, I will try to restrict my mind to future-thinking.
ex-husband. Enough said.
What I will think about as I walk along the Pacific Ocean are the people I have met through my blog and your blogs, and how much that has meant to me in the past year. In fact, I will be having dinner with a blogging friend and her family on my trip. Between having bonding time with older daughter who has, of late, come to be respectful and kind to me; trying to figure out our way around LA (even with a GPS system in the car, something I have never used before); trying to plead our case to the financial aid people; and deciding where to go amongst all the choices; I will be will be working on my vision of myself and for myself.
(A Minute to Myself questions will be appearing in its regular every other day schedule during this break.)