747 360 minutes. That’s how much time has ticked by since I have written anything of substance; anything that has meant something to me. 747 360 minutes or 519 days.
I did sneak that small post in back in January, The Battle, but that was so raw (not to mention short) I’m not really counting it as a substantial piece of writing.
So, what’s stopped me from writing? There had to have been time. I mean, 747 360 minutes isn’t chump change. There was time. And lots of it. So what stopped me?
Was I that busy? No, not really. I’ve watched a lot of TV in 747 360 minutes. I mean, a lot.
So if it wasn’t a matter of time what was it? No ideas? No, that’s not it. There have been tons of things I’ve wanted to share – our trip to Canada’s Wonderland; my 40th birthday; my 20-year college mini-reunion; Alexi’s 16th birthday; Rian’s 18th birthday; the passing of my cat, Louis; the adoption of our new cat, Skippy; finding out my other cat, Mittie (yeah, there’s a lot cats in The Madhouse), has cancer; going to Fan Expo in Toronto; how I’ve been tapping into my creative side and making crafts (all kinds of stuff, who knew I could do that?); reconnecting with old friends…the list goes on, and on.
Ok, so there was plenty of writing material, maybe lack of encouragement? No, that wasn’t it. Larry at Me, Myself and Kids has continued to encourage me to get back to writing. And Kate at Did That Just Happen? has told me numerous times she’s looking forward to reading about The Madhouse again. Mike has been exceptionally supportive. Every time he sees me madly keying at the laptop he asks, “Is that for your blog?”.
We’ve established what hasn’t stopped me from writing – there’s been plenty of time, oodles of inspiration and an abundance of support. So, what was it? It’s hard to explain, even now, because I’m experiencing the same phenomenon that has held me back for the past 747 360 minutes even as I type these words.
I feel like I’m choking. It feels like there is a hand applying pressure to my throat and the more I type the more pressure that hand applies. As though the hand doesn’t want me to communicate. As if it is trying to crush my ability to express myself. As I am experiencing this choking sensation I am also experiencing an ever-increasing build-up of anxiety although I am forcing myself to continue. I am trying not to cry. I am going to keep going.
This is the first time in 747 360 minutes I have been able to persevere through the feeling of being strangled. The first time in 519 days I’ve been able to carry on through the nausea, the clenching of my jaw, the cold, clammy hands, the shallow breathing, the racing thoughts not to mention racing heart. The first time I’ve been able to endure the mental anguish that presents itself as physical symptoms.
adjective psy·cho·so·mat·ic \-sə-ˈma-tik\
Simple Definition of psychosomatic
- : caused by mental or emotional problems rather than by physical illness
Full Definition of psychosomatic
- 1 : of, relating to, concerned with, or involving both mind and body <the psychosomatic nature of man — Herbert Ratner>
- 2 : of, relating to, involving, or concerned with bodily symptoms caused by mental or emotional disturbance <psychosomatic symptoms> <psychosomatic medicine
Even my face is tingling. God, I hate this. Please get me through this.
At the New Year I received a message from my friend, Saidat. Saidat is a motivational speaker, singer, song-writer and author of the children’s book, Tadias and the Bully Tree. Saidat wanted to start a blog but needed help. She asked if I would be willing to help with editing (I’m sure some of you are cringing as I know I often misuse commas and formal writing tools, like, well, brackets) and maintain the blog. I accepted.
And thus was born Living to Motivate, Motivating to Live. Saidat’s blog. I’ve been enjoying editing her work and doing the odd extra bit of writing for her here and there, but it’s not the same as writing in my own voice; giving my thoughts words and wings. Allowing myself to write as myself.
Another friend sent me an email yesterday asking my opinion on an email she had written. I did, what I call, a “quick tweaking” and sent it back to her. This was what she sent me in reply.
It’s amazing what that little “take some credit” did for me. Yes, I can write and write well. Yes, I have a gift for stringing words together in such a way that they are coherent and expressive. Yes, I am a Writer. It’s only taken me 28 years or 10 222 days or 14 716 800 minutes to say it out loud.