When I was a kid and spent an inordinate amount of time in the bathroom, my dad would shout through the locked door, “Did you fall in?!” Cute, right? Any extended period of isolation chalked up to calamity rather than choice.
A few days ago, I was reminded of this childhood memory when I got a text from a close writer friend: You’ve been quiet, and that’s scary.
Whoops. I guess I have. Not just here on the blog, but with nearly everyone. I’ve turned into one of those people who get so wrapped up in a new relationship that they seem to have fallen into the proverbial toilet.
I’m sorry, y’all. It’s more than just the relationship, though. It’s been an emotionally strenuous undertaking, going strong on documenting my self-discovery for nearly a year (though the work started well before that), and while my own growth and progress continues, the documenting process has lately felt cumbersome. The pile of unfinished blog drafts continues to grow, while the publish button grows dusty with disuse.
I struggle with a chorus of should’s in my mind, pointing out all the things I should be doing, all the ways I’m falling short and failing. I never wanted my writing here to be a “should.” And for the most part, it hasn’t. Until recently. Hence, my hesitation to force myself to produce anything (I’ll be damned if I give into those bitches in my cerebral chorus). And in all honesty, my posts are often discarded due to a lack of closure rather than a lack of desire. So much in my mental landscape is in flux, in process, under construction — I hardly know what to write about it.
But rather than continuing to do nothing, I’m going to do…something. Here are a few quick updates:
- Swirling – His trash can lives here now. His tools are in my shed (which he spent 8 hours organizing last weekend). My younger children adore him. My oldest, initially slow to warm up, appears to genuinely like and respect him. He and I have worked through enough conflict at this point that the love-drunk haze has gone, but what remains is a greater understanding of how we each think and operate. So I find myself in this comfortable-yet-exciting place of knowing I’ve found my person. There is talk of marriage, of a baby (don’t get too riled up — most discussion has been theoretical/fantastical in nature), of moving in, of “our kids,” and all things we-future-us-team. And it is perfectly lovely.
- Fears – The Match and I are nearly exact opposites, and this has led to no small amount of friction. He is a strategic logistician with unyielding principles. I’m more like dust in the wind. Happy rose-colored-glasses-wearing dust, but basically the kind of dust that goes with the flow. I’m flexible, adaptable, forgiving, and I give equal weight to emotions and facts. And so much of what I am grates against so much of how he operates. But through open communication, seeking to understand one another’s needs, motivations, and histories, and a commitment to leaning into conflict rather than away…we’re making this work. But there is this fear- based voice that sometimes whispers to me, you’re going to fuck this up. And sometimes I believe the voice.
- Prospects – Remember my writer friend who reached out? Well, she’s been kicking me freelance content writing gigs to help boost my portfolio. Her singularly kind and generous gesture came at the exact moment I reached a new height of frustration with my conservative religious work environment. In this opportunity, I see the potential for movement and change that could allow me the flexibility I need to pursue some dreams, both as a writer and as an advocate for social justice.
Well, there’s more, of course, but I’m feeling like this is a good stopping point. Apologies to those wondering if I’d fallen in, so to speak. I’m unlocking the door now. I’ll be out soon.