Monday, February 18, 2013

The Five-Year Itch

Lately, when I sit still, I feel antsy.  Whether it's while the kids are playing and for once not in need of my immediate intervention or by myself while Gage naps and Jack is at school, I have this sense there's something I should be doing - something I'm forgetting or something my conscious brain is deliberately ignoring.  Like today:  here I sat on my driveway on a gorgeous afternoon, watching Jack shoot baskets, while Jason and Gage played inside. We'd had a busy day, and I was tired, my allergies were in full swing, but I still had that itch - there was something that needed doing.   I know what it is.  It's time to write, like seriously write, like more than a few lines of blog-style venting and ranting. 
 This fall, Jack will be in full-time kindergarten and Gage will start 2-days-a-week preschool.  The kids are getting a little older, and I'm finally finding myself with some spare time on my hands here and there when I'm not too exhausted to even think.  I hear part of my mind whispering to me,"Write! You need to write!" Then, another part of my mind comes up with an excuse not to.  It's very similar to rationalizations not to exercise.  (I should go run...but I'm tired, I'm hungry, I need to pay bills, it looks like rain...) Part of it, I guess, is that I'm a little lazy.  As much as I enjoy writing and feel rewarded by it, it is work, and it can be frustrating.  More of it, though,  is that I am reticent or even afraid to go leaping off into that abyss.  What if I start writing a book, and I can't finish it?  What if I don't have what it takes to sit in front of my computer for the hours, daily it would take to complete it?  What if I do finish it, and it sucks?  What if I can't get it published?  I know I sound like McFly in Back to the Future (I just don't think I could handle that kind of rejection.)
Of course, I know the answers to all this.  If I never try, I'll never know if I could've done it.  I'll always wonder.  But still it's hard to actually do it, when I can tidy up the kitchen, fold laundry, order things on amazon,  poke around on Facebook, or find a million other excuses not to sit down at my desk.  It's like deciding to clean my whole apartment in college before I could sit down to study for an exam.
In the end, when I think about it, I know I'll do it.  I have to do it, or I'll drive myself crazy with mental self-nagging.  At least, I'll try to do it. I'll take my own advice, often given to Jack about new foods, activities or friends - you'll never know if you don't try.  That kid is so like me sometimes it scary.  So pretty soon, I promise, I'm going to start suffering and write that symphony... er, book.*

* This is a reference to Singing in the Rain, which my sister and I watched over and over to the point of obsession when we were kids.

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