As I sit down to write this week, I can’t help but notice how completely different things feel. It could have something to do with the fact that, one week into my Whole30, I’ve got more energy during the day than ever. But I’m guessing that it has more to do with the fact that on Wednesday night, four days before my deadline, I finished my Someone In The Way draft.
If you don’t know, I first had the idea to re-write Finding Lily back in March. Towards the end of April, I sat down and got to work. I struggled and struggled with re-writing that book (it was only a novella of 30k) for months and months. I even gave up at one point and started working on a new project.
But then… then I discovered this book, and I sat down and outlined that novel scene by scene. Then I got to work. A month and a half later, I have a completely new draft that is in great shape.
Finishing something that I started in April has had an incredible effect on me. I haven’t stopped smiling for days. I’m sleeping better. I don’t feel guilty every time I open up a book to read. I feel… accomplished.
And I absolutely cannot wait to share this book with the world.
How do I say anything, really, when a terrifying thing happened in town this week. You all know the story by now: a 64-year-old man hammered out two windows on the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay and opened fire into a concert crowd below. He killed almost 60 people and injured well over 500. I am so fortunate to not know anyone who was hurt, and my heart goes out to all those who have. I can’t imagine the pain they must be experiencing.
How do I say anything, really, about how much writing I got done this week, or about sneaking in a sushi dinner date with my husband, or talk about all the adorable stories my son has been telling us this week.
It never fails that I feel completely out of control on Monday’s. There’s always too much to do and not enough time. But Tuesday’s… on Tuesday’s I kick ass. On Tuesday’s I work diligently, find time to write, spend time with my boys, and manage, even, to cook a mean eggplant parmesan for dinner.
Self-care matters. I never feel quite so like myself when my nails are freshly trimmed and painted black.
My son is smack in the middle of that age where they’re old enough to know when they’re doing something wrong, but not quite old enough to understand real discipline. My aunt was a grade school teacher for years, and then a principal (she is now retired) and about two weeks ago we were discussing my problems with disciplining my son. She suggested we try a rewards system. Sticker charts work for a lot of kids, but that wouldn’t allow us to take something away to discourage negative behavior. My aunt mentioned popsicle sticks in a jar.
We didn’t use popsicle sticks, but the idea is the same. When he does something positive, like eat his whole meal (this is a problem) or put away his toys, he gets a clip that he attaches to a string where he can see it. If he behaves poorly, we take a clip away. When he gets ten clips on the string, we give him a hot wheels car (only $.94 each–totally worth it).
So far it’s worked wonders. Let’s hope that continues.
I was invited somewhere recently—a big event on a holiday I’m not so much a fan of. I thought about coming up with an excuse not to go, but then I realized how silly that would be. So I told my friend the truth. I told her it’s not my kind of thing and we’d rather stay close to home and keep things simple.
My friend replied, “I knew you were going to say that.”
At first, I laughed. But then, slowly, it came to me: am I really that predictable?
I came back from Brian Head feeling like a whole new person. The time away from the city, the fresh air, the feeling that comes along with writing 10,100 words in just over two days—I can’t put a price on it. It was just what I needed.
There were a few similarities to the camp I spent summers at as a kid. The way—for two weeks—you were the best of friends with nine other girls. You thought you’d never make friends like them again, and it broke your heart to leave them behind at the end. But then by the time school started you’d forgotten all about them. Or the way you learnt just how painful black fly bites are. Or how you had the art of bathing in ice cold lake water every second day…
1 Yesterday I started reading a book that, at its core, is about female friendship. I haven’t gotten very far into it because I keep stopping and scribbling down notes in my journal. Friendship in your thirties is so different then when you’re younger. Some day I’ll find the right words to explain what I mean by that.
2 I’m well aware of the fact that some days are just going to drain me. Some weeks, even. Like this week. I’m siting here absolutely blown away by the fact that the weekend has…
I’ve stopped being able to write in coffee shops. They used to be the only place in which I could focus. Home holds too many distractions, I said.
Now home is the only place in which I get anything done.
When you’re a new, aspiring writer you read all those blogs that tell you to designate a writing space that is completely yours. I never believed in that. I always thought a writer should be able to write anywhere.
I grew up in small houses. Cozy, I’d say. I love my house here in Vegas,…
I can’t quite remember how it came up, or why, but last night, after I put my son to bed, I said to Dom, “Look at the guys I comment on, they’re always older. Robert Downey Jr, Charles Esten, Kevin Richardson…” I turned to him, “I wonder what that says about me? Is it because I’m a total daddy’s girl?”
He said, unblinking, “I think it’s probably the opposite. It’s probably that you want someone to take care of you. Someone responsible. Someone older.”