I’m all in a tizzy and stuck somewhere between Heaven and Hell. Today was the third installment of my creative nonfiction writing class — the first writing class I’ve ever taken and one that’s taken 3 years to work myself up to — and now that the initial shock’s worn off a bit, I find my brain positively exploding with ideas. I’m feeling alive, creative, vital, motivated. I don’t just think, “I really should write today;” I’m dying to sit down and write. That’s the Heaven part.
I’m also afraid that I won’t be able to capture all my ideas, or that if I attempt it, I’ll get stuck somehow, and then it will feel like I’ve failed, and I will hate myself for it. Or, what if I don’t get stuck at all, but write something truly terrible, and then I’ll feel like I’ve failed, and I will hate myself for it. Or maybe I won’t realize that it’s terrible and present it to the class to widespread horror, and then I’ll feel like I’ve failed, and I will hate myself for it. (Detecting any themes?) Then there’s the tiny detail that we just moved on Saturday, and we’re welcoming 6 house guests 3 (!) days from now. For once, I have real excuses for not practicing my writing, and it’s exactly the time I least want them.
That was the Hell part, in case you missed it.
Of course, as with many things I long to do, even when given the opportunity to write today, I piddled around putting out fires instead of sitting at my desk. Where is that closet organizer? I’d wonder. And that led to a search for the magical sock drawers, which put me in a room with yet another bag of canned food that I’d missed earlier and now desperately needed to be put away. Or, I’d start walking toward my studio and realize that those boxes need to be broken down – stat. Ah, living with myself.
I’m giving myself some credit, though. I’ve come a long, long way over the past couple of years in putting first things first. I wouldn’t have been able to sustain a meditation practice without it. I notice that certain kinds of self-discipline, the constructive, nurturing kind, gets easier with practice. And after all, here I sit at my keyboard, typing all self-nurturing-like. I may not be typing those sparkly ideas swirling about in the little grey cells, not this very instant anyway, but I am writing. And relieving some tension. And maybe, just maybe, I’m having a little fun.