Last week I did not write a blog post. I’m pretty bummed out about the fact that I didn’t, but I can’t always squeeze the words out. In fact, I’ve been having a lot of trouble getting words out of my skull in general, which is bad, because I’m supposed to be a writer. Building a career and all that.
Lately, I don’t feel much like a writer, because I haven’t been writing. I’m not entirely sure what’s going on, but depression is playing a major role in why I’m not accomplishing a lot of things right now. February was absolutely dreadful. My love life is far from perfect, and I’m struggling with the realities of dating post-divorce in my forties. Let’s just say things are…complicated. Relearning what you want and need from relationships can be very painful, but you learn a lot about yourself and other people. Most people are damaged. Try to treat them with respect and kindness even if what they say and do hurts you sometimes. Believe me, it isn’t easy. It takes a lot of effort, and sometimes a lot of tears to wash away that hurt.
Most days last month and several days this month I didn’t even want to get out of bed, so when I did, I considered that a win. If that was all I had to do each day, that would probably make things a lot easier. However, like most of us, I have a bunch of other things listed in my gotta do it column. I’m a single mom. I get very little support from my ex, which means that I’m running this Mom Show 24/7. Sure, I get help from my mom, but she’s quickly approaching retirement age, and my dad died back in October after a long battle with life-depleting illnesses and dementia. We’re still picking up the pieces. Still healing.
I also work a full-time job. I’m very lucky that this job allows me to do some of the things I really enjoy, like writing and relying on my creative side to solve problems, but…I’ve been struggling to find words at work, too. I scrape the inside of my skull daily and words form and I get them written, but what I’ve been writing lately is far from my best work.
I keep putting pen to paper, fingers to keyboard, and sometimes I am able to write something I’m a little more proud of, and it gives me hope. I’m not going to quit writing. I don’t think that’s really possible. Words haunt me all day long, I just need to get my focus back, get my thoughts organized. Make some better choices in my life and free myself of some of the stress that is causing this spirit-crushing depression.
At the beginning of this week I decided that I wasn’t going to let another week go by without writing a blog post. I am committed to writing. I am a writer. And that means I need to write even if what appears on the page is absolute garbage. I am committed to maintaining this blog. I believe I have a lot of good ideas I want to write about and share with other people. I am very fortunate to belong to a wonderfully diverse community of writers thanks to the MFA in Writing Popular Fiction Program at Seton Hill University. They support me and encourage me to keep writing and allow me to have access to professional writing opportunities I wouldn’t have otherwise.
In the coming weeks I will be reviewing my friend Tim Waggoner‘s novel The Way of All Flesh, which he was kind enough to send me an autographed copy of a few weeks back. Thanks, Tim, I’m reading the book now and will have questions for you within the next week or so.
And, I’ve been watching a lot of horror movies featuring mothers. I have things to say about that. Lots of things to say.
In the meantime, I’m going to fake it until I make it. I’m going to keep writing until I get back into the groove. So, this week in an effort to keep writing, I have decided to accept Chuck Wendig’s Flash Fiction Challenge. If you don’t follow Chuck’s blog, you should. I can’t tell you how many times his profanity-laden posts have pulled me out of a slump and got me back into my writing chair. His words of encouragement really do inspire me.
Here are my 100 words, Chuck. Enjoy!
The blood wouldn’t stop flowing. Beet red stains, dark ruby almost black chunks of tissue, shreds of flesh from deep inside her womb, clung to the cotton feminine napkin. Feminine. Casey sure didn’t feel ladylike, more like a horror movie monster with so much gore pouring out of her. A miracle she was still alive. She’d been bleeding for twenty-one days non-stop. Each day she felt more light-headed, disoriented, and weak. It started as a pinkish trickle. Now, she was riding a raging red river that threatened to overflow its banks and drown the inhabitants of her small farming community.