Argh, I’m fighting the fear in real time right now as I battle with writer’s block, willing myself on to finish this blog post in a bid to unblock myself and unlock other creative projects I’ve been ignoring.
I’m feeling stumped creatively. I’m full of ideas but I’m lacking in motivation and confidence. I need to re-read a post I wrote on overcoming writer’s block and take my own bloody advice.
Every last drop of energy was admitteely drained out of me last week as I resettled the boys back into formal education after six months of homeschooling them, only to enjoy one single child-free day of interrupted work when my youngest fell ill with a fever overnight meaning both kids had to remain off school until we’d rushed around for a Covid test and received a negative result (which we did).
I’m shattered. Weary, Teary. Spent. Aware of new frown lines I now have, and will always be too scared to Botox away.
Back to school admin plus plot twist fever-watch and week-long sleep deprivation has given life to self-doubt, like the weeds that thrive on dog piss and I’m started that familiar self-destructive dance where I distance myself from those I need most and proceed to punish myself, usually by cutting the supply to what I need most in order to survive emotionally. Making art.
I kidded myself it was self preservation that made me abandon my screenplay a month ago when I was 10 pages away from finishing the final act of the first draft but it was self sabotage.
Perhaps it’s because I know the real work starts when draft 2 does, and then it takes another 20 before anyone is allowed to clap eyes on it. Maybe it’s the fear of success as much as failure thwarting me or the fact it’s scary shit putting yourself and your work out there, whether that work languishes in a drawer forever or gets made into a movie one day.
My characters are experiening a midlife crisis much like their author as we collectively hurtle towards our 40ths without a clue of what is meant to come next.
Here I am, a mass of contradictions, happier than I’ve been in years with boundaries mostly on point yet harder on myself than ever when it comes to my work. I’m less bothered by what people who don’t know me, think of me personally and don’t feel the professional pressure of my 20s and 30s. My end goal is to simply relish what I’m doing to earn the bucks and I am. Admittedly I’m unusure of what I REALLY want out of life in the next chapter: whether to have another baby before my eggs give up on me and/or start a part time second MA while blogging here-or maybe having a crack at all three.
Life feels so unsettled that I often wonder if adding a little more disruption would make much difference anyway.
Xander flopped onto my bed earlier, all clean from his bath, springy curls cascading down his forehead cherub-like and whispered, ‘I’m so sleepy Mummy. Life is making me tired. I wish the weekend wasn’t over’.
‘Life is making me tired too, son’ I said and kissed and kissed those honey-scented cheeks.
He’s had a challenging week of endless fevers after the big return back to school that was built up like an early Christmas (guilt), topped off today with an early birthday shin dig with his bubble of friends and a tower of chocolately waffles in the pancake haven that is Creams. Fun yet surreal. Temperatures taken at the door, orders made via phone at the table, waiters in masks and reduced movement once you’re sat down. Understandable and reassuring measures but a clinical world away from last year’s celebrations.
No wonder we all feel out of sorts right now. It’s normal to feel abnormal as we experience these shifts. Externally and internally. It’s making us resilient af though isn’t it. Determined. We wallow but we get back up again.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to finish that f***** first draft. I’m still undecided about all the other life choices I’m pondering, FYI. Don’t start knitting baby booties just yet.