Deep breath. You can do this, Heidi. You can focus and get back into that groove, that happy place, where words come easily and you pull stories and recipes and musings about living aboard out of your brain and heart and soul (and yes, sometimes it seems, out of your ass!) and they flow into your lightning-fast typing fingers onto the page. You’ve faced far worse challenges where you felt like you were drowning and always burst through the waves for that big gulp of fresh air and a fin-flip to take you in a new direction. So why not NOW?
For two solid years I posted at least once a week on this Blog. If I knew I’d be busy, I’d write the posts and schedule them to go live so I wouldn’t miss a week. Not a single week for two years … over 100 posts and now at nearly 200. I had a nice following of people from around the world that read my writing and the feedback was always positive from friends and family. I would joke to my husband that I was an “International Blogger” and I had to keep up my Blog so as not to disappoint my “Fans.”
I wrote daily and scheduled time to write. I went on writing retreats, met with our writing group at local coffee shops, and found inspiration all around me. I submitted my work in competitions and read it aloud in front of live audiences. After not believing that I was good enough for decades, I proudly proclaimed myself a “WRITER.”
Then COVID-19 swept across the globe. Life turned upside down. Our plans to go cruising were put on hold. Again. I became the caregiver and Head Schoolmistress for my beloved grandchildren. I had to cease swimming at the gym and working out with my personal trainer. Grocery shopping was more for survival than for enjoyment so meals became boring. We watched the terrifying news of the infections and deaths as they rose and panic and fear were the prevailing emotions. Add the election, with so much hatred from the Trumpers, and there seemed to be very little light in the world.
I became anxious and depressed and often isolated … like so many others affected by the pandemic. I drank too much, had insomnia and often suffered panic attacks. Life was pretty much just going through the motions with little joy and doing just the basics with no thought for the future because it was so unknown. My main focus was caring for my family and didn’t take time for myself. I stopped writing.
I let my blog languish once the scheduled posts ran out last June. I’d rally once a month, mainly out of guilt for allowing the hard work I had put into the blog to just die. I’d post something, but it was more like a chore than the delight it had once been. I forgot how good it felt to wordsmith and wordsmith and wordsmith until I was pleased with the finished product and then that thrill when I pushed the “Publish” button. And then the huge pride when people would read it and tell me they enjoyed it. I rarely even opened my Blog because I was disappointed in myself. I had let myself down.
A few months ago I started practicing yoga once or twice a week with a dear friend, Kim Hess. She also introduced me to essential oils to stimulate my senses and to explore natural health benefits (citrus and rosemary to invigorate, lavender and chamomile to relax, peppermint for headaches, among many others). Hubby and I bought a little sailboat that we take out weekly and gives us immense joy. Exactly 40 days ago I started a daily guided 10-minute meditation using the Calm app and haven’t missed a single day (I am consistent if nothing else). The world is slowly recovering from COVID-19 and soon four of the six Grands will be back in school, with just the Little Girls still at home.
We’re coming into Spring and I’m feeling the stirrings of creativity again and the pull to get lost in my words.
I’m not sure where this new course will take me. I’d like to get back to weekly posts, but I’m not going to put that pressure on myself just yet. I am going to schedule dedicated writing time again and put myself in front of the screen with no distractions. I’m going to set a goal of two posts a month. No set topic, no exact date for publishing, no length restrictions. Starting in April. I launched this dream on April 16, 2019 and it has patiently waited for me to come back.
Deep breath, Heidi. Flex your mermaid fin, dive deep and go to that place that is all yours.
Thank you for reading my words and for supporting me in this journey.
Vivo O Sonho … Living the Dream!