Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Dancing through the storms of life

Writing is a challenge lately.  I have started 6 stories in the past couple weeks. Six stories, that I have not been inspired enough, or focused enough, to finish.  What is wrong with me!?  Maybe I am losing it.  Maybe I never had it.  Maybe I need to call a counselor!  Maybe I need a margarita!? Maybe... Just Maybe!


This is all very strange for me because I don't usually have this problem. I generally can write without a whole lot of effort;  A need to make stories longer, or more complete, is not something I typically handle.  We all know I am long winded and excessively descriptive!  We all know I sometimes should just shut up!  I am sure you have all thought, "Is she ever going to stop writing?" at various times in the past, or maybe at this very moment!  But this is not my reality today.   Today I am somewhat speechless, or wordless...and writing is a challenge, but I shall try to express myself. I will try.

While I am not a trained therapist, I think my recent writer's block is related to my dad's heart attack.  On September 19th my father had a heart attack.  His heart actually stopped and they had to shock him back to life!  He received a stint and is physically doing well. He is expected to make a full recovery, but things have changed and there is no going back. Perhaps the biggest change, after 45 years as a smoker, my dad quit smoking. I am so proud of him for this, but I find myself worrying that he won't be able to stick with it!  I have never been a smoker so I don't truly appreciate how difficult this time is for him, but I do have my personal experience struggling to recover after my brain surgery so I do understand that emotionally he is in a very challenging and scary place. And while he is facing this difficult time, he is absent of one of his regular coping mechanisms-nicotine.  And that sucks for him.  It just does.

So it is weird right now. I know that given the circumstances for now "weird" is probably normal, but it is still weird. When I see my dad, even though I try not to, I find myself wondering if it will be the last time I see him.  When I hug him, will I never hug him again?  And my mom! I know she is scared and hurting, but she isn't talking much about it.  They are both trying to be strong and brave for us kids.  There is no way for me, or any member of our family, to return to the time before his heart attack.  So we must all forge new paths forward and deal with it in our own ways.  I run. My sisters are canning a lot and my brother is involved in football and teaching so he is keeping busy.  I guess this healing process must be taking all of my creative energy these days and that is why writing is such a challenge.  Other than my brain surgery in 2007, my family has not dealt with such serious health issues. And this time I am not the patient; this surprisingly makes it both easier and harder all at the same time.  It is just hard. Life is just hard.                                                                                                                                                                                                    
And it just keeps going...

even when your dad has a heart attack; you forgot show and tell (again); or you go to the store to buy cool whip and come home with everything but the cool whip while your husband looks on wondering if you've finally lost your mind. Life Goes On people! It just does!

So I guess what this all boils down to is this: life's catastrophes/challenges/emergencies/heart attacks/brain surgeries/(insert your own personal struggles here) they are important.  As much as I hate to admit it, these tough times really are important because they cause us to pause, to re-evaluate how we are living and to decide if we need to make changes.  What I have decided is that

There is something about dancing that ignites my soul and brings my body to life! I need to be better about dancing amid the storms of life.  Sometimes I do well.  Sometimes I bravely head out to dance in the raging storms of life and other times I hide like a coward inside the routine of normalcy and the predictable and I wait for the storm to pass. Sometimes I am brave and sometimes a total chicken. What I have learned is this:  It is the rare moments when you are scared sh*tless and you take the plunge despite your fear that lead to the most rewarding moments in life. Be brave, have faith and dance in the hurricanes of your life and I will try to do the same!

PS next time I hope to have my sense of humor back and not be so darn emotional!

God Bless!

Vern Out

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