Season of self-love…

It is cold today.  The kind of cold that reminds me of walks in northern Massachusetts on a windy autumn day.  It is that kind of cold.   My mind is filled with images of warmth:  blankets, fires, good books, family and friends.

I also have a cold today. It is not the worst one that I have had in recent memory.  It is enough, however, to cause my mind to feel sluggish, my fingers to ache, and my creativity to diminish.  Sometimes life is like that, right?

Sometimes life forces you to stay still.  Sometimes it reminds you that no matter what you think you ‘should’/’must’/’need to’ do, you can only do as much as you can do.  It reminds you to make decisions that take into account where, who, and what you are.  I am glad for this.

It is in these moments of pause that I remember that… You know what?  Physical and psychological hardship are experiences a part of the ebb and flow of life, and they are possible to overcome.  And what’s wonderful is that they can be easier to overcome when you acknowledge their presence in your life…

More importantly, they can be easier to overcome by allowing others to understand that this is your present experience, and furthermore…by allowing others to help you.  Well, I am off to play piano, write, study, work, and be with friends.  In other words, I am off to experience the rest of my life not just my illness.

Happy Weekend All!

Until next time!

Best,

D.

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes,
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Moments so dear.
Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights
In cups of coffee
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.In five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure
A year in the life?

How about love?
How about love?
How about love? Measure in love

Seasons of love. Seasons of love

When we are unsure,

…we are alive. – Graham Greene

Tomorrow begins NaNoWriMo, and today I learnt an important lesson:  it is okay not to know.  I do not know what will happen as I begin to write my story.  Yes, I have outline.  Yes, I have been reading various books on novel writing.  Yes, I feel passionately about my ideas thus far.  The fact, however, still remains that the moment my fingers strike the keyboard; tapping out words to form images, tapping out words to create feeling, tapping, tapping; it means I let go of my control.  I let go of the safe thoughts that have been circulating in my mind about what my story is or what it ought to be.  I place myself at the mercy of my imagination and my subconscious.  Is this scary?   Heck, yes!  It conjures images of failure of all types, and failing is something I fear greatly.  This is what I realized also today.  I fear failure, which goes hand-in-hand with my fear of not knowing.

It is okay not to know.  I write those words to remind myself that I am capable of being a good parent to myself, capable enough to allow myself humanity.  There are often times when I surrender to not knowing the future, not remembering the past, not being in the present.  Now, I surrender to not knowing myself in my entirety.  It is okay not to know.

This is my mantra starting tonight.  The last three weeks have been something akin to internal hell with a body that was failing me, a mind that was frustrating me with old expectations that echo from words spoken by people in the past:  there is no room for failure, 99% is not enough.   Still, even after thirty-four years, the drive for perfection in so very many things continues to present in my waking steps, perhaps too in my dreams .  It is okay not know, perhaps never to know.  I am a living being.  I am not static.  I am dynamic, ever-changing, ever embracing the process of life.

I remind myself now that there is nothing for which to ask forgiveness, and perhaps there never will be as long as I am trying my very best.  Some days I will achieve 100%.  Some days I will achieve 50%.  There are only two points: to live and to write.  Perhaps it is to live through writing.

It’s time to begin NaNoWriMo! 😉  Good luck, everyone!

Best,

D.

What I write…

Found on Tumblr (File name: tumblr_lxk4ytehyo1qzuyz3o1_500.png)

A relatively quiet Sunday.  All the shops are closed, except the fruit stand and the pizzeria around the corner.  I took a break from writing, and actually took the time to sort through some writing.  I decided to post some work that I had done over the course of the past academic year.

I decided to do this partly because a friend asked me to email her a copy of a short story that I had written, and partly because of something my mother said to me a few days ago, i.e. “It doesn’t make sense to keep all of this to yourself.  You have to share it.”  She was, at the time, referring to my poetry.  I think, however, that the same goes for my other writing.As I prepare for NaNoWriMo, I have come to recognise that although I have always written, I never really considered myself capable of writing stories.

Yes, some years ago, I sat down at began writing a novel, to which I hope to return once I have some more distance from it and have become a better writer.  Even as a child, I started stories, but rarely did I find their endings.  Perhaps it was simply that I did not want to imagine an end to my stories then, or perhaps I did not know how to end them.

It was different with poetry.  I would write, then rewrite, then rewrite.  All of that with the effort of finding the end, finding the meaning of all that wanted to say.  In poetry I sought answers to the questions that plagued me.

It is with tremendous thanks to my professors, authors Carlos Dews and Elizabeth Geoghegan, in creative writing that I have gained the confidence that I can find my endings to my stories.  I hope as I go along that I will make them proud of the foundation that they helped me to build.

So, please, review my stories and personal essays to be found under the Writing section of this blog.

Short Stories

Personal Essays

Facing your character(s)…

No, this is not a post about confronting yourself, owning up to your issues, etc…although this is a topic that I have been known to address.  And it is one to which I shall undoubtedly return.  Today’s post, however, is about an interesting site called Need a Face for that Character?

I tend towards being a very visual person.  Thus, even when I am writing, my mind sees first images that capture the essence of my mental and emotional states or thoughts.  As such, I find it easier to have a visual of a face or place to help prompt me in my writing.  I am an avid user of Google Images, and I must say that it has proved helpful.  The Tumblr site Need a Face for that Character?, however, is a wonderful tool when searching for interesting/unique faces to represent characters.

The site is fairly straight-forward to use, allowing for users to search the database using keywords.  I am a fan of simply heading straight to the Archives page as it gives an overall visual of all the available faces.

Well, it’s a rather short post today.  I hope, however, that you will find it useful for those of you who are either preparing for NaNoWriMo, or already writing stories, or even roleplaying (I think this was the initial intention for the site ;)).

Until Next Time!

Best,

D.

Hearing my voice again…

Suppleness Of The Moment, photography by Dolores Juhas (http://dolores-juhas.tk)

It is cold today.  The kind of cold that conjures to the mind apple orchards, pumpkin pie, and children running around in costumes.  It’s that kind of weather today, and I am sitting outside.  Perhaps I shouldn’t be.  Perhaps I should go inside.  I won’t though.  At least, not until I have finished enjoying the feeling of being outside.

Living in the moment is an art form.  Being able to say “Yes, I will acknowledge you” to the goings-on around and within you is not easy.  It takes time to soothe the fear of the unknown known, or to learn how to live comfortably with it.  I believe it is a lifelong self-dialogue.  Today, I was able to give an affirmative to myself when I felt the desire to sing and play guitar.  I worked through the fear of having others overhear me, or being disruptive, or sounding like crap, or whatever.  I am glad for it.

Singing today brought about the realization that I have long missed this mode of expression.   To find the right sound, the right words that reach within to evoke all that is so very difficult to state in regular speech, or in poetry, or in stories…

The sound of my voice has changed over the years.  It is more  melancholic, darker…still, I hear that clarity of old, which is something about which I can smile.

Now, if I could only sing like this… 😉 piano…piano

Until Next Time!

Best,

D.

 

Self-portrait by Dolores Juhas. Copyright (c) Dolores Juhas. All Rights Reserved.

Photographs are by Croatian photographer, Dolores Juhas, whose work has been featured in such magazines as Italian Vogue.  You can visit her website at http://www.dolores-juhas.tk or email her: d_juhas@yahoo.co.uk.  She has her own blog at http://themax.bloger.hr

In the absence of words…

I’ve wondered how best to begin writing my blog once again.  Indeed, perhaps I have been suffering a harsh bout of writer’s block and apathy.  Okay, I concede that writer’s block is not a fairly accurate description of what has (or has not) been happening as I have actually written a fair amount since my last posting… just not here. 😉 

The apathy, however…

It remains unknown to me:  the first moment that my eyes closed to the world, my ears failed to hear spoken words, my body refused to sense external and internal emotionality…  My memory brings me back only to the moment of darkness, a darkness that surrounded my entire being, shutting down access to everything and everyone. 

This was not despair.  This was not anhedonia.  This was (and still is) apathy.   Perhaps a better word to choose would be stoicism in its most holistic meaning.

I imagine reading such words might prove shocking for some who know me.  Truly, my realization of what has been happening was comparative to being doused by a bucket of ice water.

To see not in the extremes of good or bad, to be not in the extremes of glad or sad, to wake each day without hope or despair, to greet each person as neither friend nor foe… this is the result of my process for the last two months or so.  A prevailing sense of calm has descended upon me.  It reminds me of the still moments in heat of summer when we become too tired to think or to move, or even before and after the fall of heavy snow or rain when the world is overcome by the awe of nature.  For a brief moment, we recognize that we must hide or perhaps we have been hiding in order to protect.

It is fair to say that I have been weathering a storm of loss, betrayal, grief, anxiety, and anger for over a year now.  It is equally fair to say that I have been showered with love, friendship, family-connection, opportunities, and creativity.  Still, what is to come now?  What can I make of this moment in my life now that the pendulum of life has stopped swinging, now that it seems to be decidedly in the middle?

I have decided to be content with my apathy.  After all, I have made it through…

Now, it is time to begin a new story (literally and figuratively).

Until next time,

D.

P. S.  I promise to be less disjointed in my next posting. 🙂  Thanks also to everyone who stopped by! Truly, it means a lot to me.

A Brave and Startling Truth…

Happy Valentine’s Day! Love to everyone (and to myself)!  And remember to give love to yourselves as well as to those whom you love!

A Brave and Startling Truth

by Maya Angelou

We, unaccustomed to courage exiles from delight

live coiled in shells of loneliness

until love leaves its high holy temple

and comes into our sight

to liberate us into life.

If we are bold, love strikes away the chains of fear from our souls.

Love costs all we are and will ever be.

Yet it is only love which sets us free.

A Brave and Startling Truth.

When we come to it

We, this people, on this wayward, floating body

Created on this earth, of this earth

Have the power to fashion for the earth

A climate where every man and every woman

Can live free without sanctimonious piety

And without crippling fear

When we come to it

We must confess that we are the possible

We are the miraculous, the true wonders of this world

That is when, and only when

We come to it.


Until next time!

Best,

D.