The road to nowhere is NOT paved with good intentions. It is paved with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Wayfair, instant messenger, texting, 30 minute phone calls (OK, possibly much longer) with my three sisters, two daughters and various friends, playing hide-and-go-seek with the dog, making lists I will never complete, thinking about exercising, not exercising, justifying all of the above. I get on Word, read back through stuff I’ve started, and decide it’s all crap. Next, I get on WordPress while my Pinterest, Twitter, and Facebook tabs are still open. What if something important happens? I mean, someone might send me a really inspirational or funny pin. Anthony Bourdain might tweet something very profound which is exactly what I need to hear at this very moment.
I write three sentences, and there’s that blip sound that means something was posted on Facebook, commented on, or worse, someone is messaging me because they are trapped under something heavy. Do I want to be responsible for one of my 456 closest friends bleeding out under a pile of rubble somewhere? The phone rings, I have to at least look at the caller ID. One of my kids might have wonderful news or a desperate crisis. What kind of mother would I be? OK, so it’s a number I don’t recognize,,, Someone selling something? OR A very long-lost friend? I’m too curious, I HAVE to answer.
Is it really necessary for me to get dressed every day? I’m at home, not writing, and being a very attentive mother to my fur-baby, Roxanne (We did not pick that name. The dog came with it. My daughter Emily and I wanted the name “Mishka.” Stop judging.), and thinking about what I will eventually not wind up making for dinner. The melody of my washer or dryer goes off, which sounds sort of like an ice-cream truck, but ends in me running down a flight and a half of stairs to find only work and never an orange sherbet pushup. On the way back up through the living room, I spy the TV. What could one episode of Law and Order CI that I’ve seen a dozen times, an episode of Catfish, or an episode of Dr. Phil hurt? I might get inspiration. I’m now in my pajamas not writing, ignoring the fur-baby, eating junk, and watching rubbish. How quickly 3 pm sneaks up on me. I’ve accomplished little or nothing, and I go into hyper-drive. I furiously load the dishwasher, wipe down everything, sweep the floors, fix the bed, throw clothes on, throw my hair up, a little bit of makeup, spot-clean the bathroom, defrost ANYTHING in the microwave, and make a good show of having been very busy ALL day.
How’s that working for me? I’m strolling aimlessly on a beautifully paved road to nowhere. SO, today I actually made breakfast for my family, am fully dressed, went for a walk, planned an evening meal (noodles for pasta salad cooling as I write), and NO I am not doing laundry because it leads to eating junk and watching rubbish! It’s a start. I did the same job for sixteen years, and thought I would effortlessly transition into home making, and chasing my dream of writing at warp speed. I had lofty expectations and a whole lot of fear. For a perfectionist, lowering expectations is a true challenge. I’m starting. The determined perfectionist who enjoys walking, cooking, cleaning, laundry, and more than any of those things, writing, knows where she’s going. Three times in the past week people, other than family, have said the most amazing words someone like me could ever hope hear, “I mean, you ARE a writer.” “After all, you’re a writer.” Best yet, “You’re a really good writer.” I might just be a writer, yet.