So on May 14th I accepted a job in San Diego, California. This job would in theory, make me happy enough with my choice in future career path(s) that I couldn’t resist. My husband and dear friend, Chris, is completely on board with the decision and backs me 100%. So I left my job in Austin, Texas, to take this job, 19 hours away and back in my own home town, leaving behind my son, my husband, all that I hold dear. In the time it took to drive to San Diego I recognized and rejected the taste of sacrifice.
Not every parent, but for the most part, most parents have to face sacrifice to some extent. This trip made me realize I didn’t know what Sacrifice was until this job opportunity. Sure my husband will be away from his family, out from under the control of his overbearing and controlling mother, and I would be back to my roots- inevitably making us happier in our circumstances to be allowed the freedom to appreciate our happiness in each other. Our problem, to date, has been focusing so much on our financial and physical issues that we lost sight of the fact that we are together, still, and in love with each other, still, and have a beautiful, happy and healthy son. There isn’t much more on this planet that could make us happier- except freedom from debt. And this job, served up on a silver platter, offers a portion of the debt-free feeling that would encourage our emotional health. Who am I to turn down such an opportunity?
Being away from my 3 year old, away from my husband of 4 years- my lover of nearly 4.5- the guy I’ve had eyes on for 5 years now- creates in me a sadness I didn’t think would be tenable without the loss of a dearly loved family member. Each day I find myself thinking “Colton would love this!” or “Chris would laugh at this, too!” and it takes everything in me to not lose control, to not burst into tears and give in to the ever-increasing feelings of depression and loneliness. Being away from the source of your happiness and love, being away from those that make you feel whole though sometimes a bit crazy and eccentric, creates a chasm of the deepest loss, the deepest and most sincere ache in your heart it is difficult to just deal with it- let alone handle it.
My son, our son, Colton is the light of my life. He is funny, he is social and curious. He finds joy in fast and adrenaline-inducing activities. He is a soccer champ, a lover of butterflies, and loves to play in the mud and water puddles after a good raining. He can joke with you just as fast as he can yell and get frustrated and throw a tantrum. He is a victim of his emotions and he is all the funnier for it. Chris is my exact opposite- a Type B to my Type A, and sometimes vice versa. When I am with Chris I feel a certain sense of responsibility mixed with a wholly encompassing sense of security and surety. With Chris I know where I stand: I know how he sees me and I know how much he loves me. There is little on this planet that could make me feel otherwise.
I’ve officially been separated from Chris and Colton for 6 weeks and each day now my heart finds a way to be smaller, colder, harder and less capable of containing my agony. I miss waking up to the sounds of Colton getting dressed, to fixing him breakfast and talking to him over his favorite meals. I miss spinning him in circles and listening to him retell his days events in a rushed and stuttering baby-on-the-cusp-of-boy voice. I miss my husband; the way he’d kiss the back of my neck and massage my shoulders after a stressful day. The way he smells when he lays down to sleep; a special blend of cologne, deodorant, and cigarettes. And the way his hands feel when he seeks out my hip to hold and my back to cuddle. If there was anyone who ever said they didn’t miss their family has never known true love, or has ever felt the love that comes from being loved by your child and the person who helped you make them.
To Chris, my love and the sole reason I have Colton: You are my universe, still, forever and always baby. To Colton, the light of my life and the reason I work so damned hard: I hope to goodness you stay sweet and generous with your love. To the men who make my life worth living: I miss you like crazy and I can’t wait for August 1st!
Like most of my previous blog posts, I have a dream to share. Only this time it is in snippets and glimpses of the whole. What the main storyline or theme is, I have no clue, but I hope that in my relation of my dream someone will be able to fill in the blanks.
My dream went as follows:
Harsh ragged breathing fills my ears, my sight is dim and yellowed. The hall before me is tiled, dingy, and houses hundreds of doors. All are locked, all are darkened, and as I pass each one, the breathing lessens and silence fills the void.
A scream of terror rips through my mind and I am flung back against the wall. A door opens and darkness spills forth, oozing up and along the wall beside me. It begins to turn to mist and take shape; it is huge and dense and smells of sickly medicine.
A door slams and I am once again walking down the empty hallway, my bare feet cold and dry on the tiled floor. My hands start to sweat as each door opens, yet silence still reigns. I call out a hollow echo, begging someone to be there, begging for security and reassurance.
The doors all slam shut at once and I wake.
One thing I love about returning to old characters or old story ideas, is having the opportunity to see them with a fresher perspective. I've noticed that once I start writing something, I spend so much time on it I get caught up in the story's web and my own little world, that what I end up with is something only I enjoy reading.
Last weekend I decided to revisit my first and favorite character, Sabrina. She's psychotic, suffers from manic mood swings, changes her hairstyle and color like other's change underwear, and thoroughly enjoys catting her mice before eating them. She's violent, sadistic, and sometimes borders on sociopathic. She is so clear in my mind it's like looking at my own memories instead of looking at a figment of my imagination. And I only take her out for a spin when my own life gets too hectic to deal with.
35 pages of 12-point font and that's not including the prologue or the outline. I'm so proud of myself for these small accomplishments I could just *squee. In an attempt to better my education and gain entrance into a University, I learned it would make things much easier to apply for an Undergrad in English with Emphasis on Creative Writing if I had my own portfolio established. With the smattering of short stories and imperfect poems I have to my name, I wanted to add something else to this as-yet developed portfolio that would blow the minds of those who read it. i wanted to add a little variety to my blah-bland portfolio with its romantic and eccentric short stories and poems. I wanted to share my flavor of crazy.
I hope the creative juice still juices and I finish the first five chapters before it's time to apply. I'm so nervous about my habit of quitting half-way will rear its ugly malformed head and end my productivity. Ambition is a new taste to me, as Competitiveness had been only 7 short months ago. Hopefully it washes down well with Grit and Determination.
Every other two months, I work night shift for two months. It is a rotating shift of 12 hours, broken up by 2-3 days of time off. While I'm on night shift, I will keep night shift hours even on my days off, so that I reduce my chances of experiencing fatigue or frustration with my shedule. Because of this, I am the only person in the house that is awake at all wee hours of the night and morning. Because of this, I get incredibly bored and try to think of ways to inspire myself to write more, or write something new.
A few nights ago I decided to try reading a free Kindle eBook from Amazon in the hopes of finding something so ridiculous or "Not worth my time" that it would spur me to write something I know I'd enjoy. Well, I didn't find something ridiculous, nor did I find anything that would make me want to write instead of read. Instead, I found something worth reading the next installation of. Imagine that. My unusually long run of Bad Picks from the Kindle eBook section had finally ended. I had found something worth my time.
So last night, to the point of my blog post tonight, is I decided to go on a Free Kindle eBook rampage, starting with "Veiled Eyes (Lake People)". So far it has held my attention, but mostly because of the possibilities the story line and characters present rather than what the story actually provides. In this endeavor I ended up "buying" 12 free Kindle eBooks, 6 of them having no reviews whatsoever. I am hoping that my determination to give those unreviewed writers a review and the self-published authors a chance, I will someday have the favor returned by an equally industrious reader whenever it is I get around to writing something and publishing it.
Also, with the creation of my free eBook book list, I have also created the opportunity to regain interest in my blog(s). Ha! Imagine that...
Yes, Larth, as in the Etruscan equivalent to the Scandinavian name Lars.
I have been negligent of my blog here on WF for the past week or so because Tuesday I learned the writing project I thought was due on the 23rd, was actually due on the 16th. Surprise! So I have been writing feverishly, researching ravenously, and managed to pull a 15 page tragic love story out of my creative pool. But then, what's this? My professor only wanted the story to be 5-6 pages? What nonsense is this? No good story is less than 10 pages! (In my opinion, anyway, and that is with it being double spaced.)
So I edit, rearrange, reword, and restructure segments, sentences, and paragraphs and succeed in making a lovely 9,000 word story into a sufficient 5,000. But oh- wait. It is still too long? By a thousand words, you say? Crap.
Editing again and again, rewording and revising sentences and structure again and again until I am sick unto death of my own story and wish I had never hatched the idea in the first place- alas! 4,700 words and my story is within 9 pages, and 9, my friends, is wholly acceptable to my professor. Why, say you? When 5-6 pages was her first requirement? Because I complained I could not retain historical accuracy of the story, the characters, and the artifacts I incorporated into it, and keep it the shortened length she first required.
No one appreciates an overachiever who, when turning in their work, falls short of the professors expectations for what an overachiever should submit. However, the last project I turned in was supposed to be a slide show containing 45-55 slides including works and sources cited and title page. What I turned in was 33 slides with two slides of sources and works cited, a title page, and a table of contents. So well was my research, she allowed it. And now, she expects greatness from any project I turn in.
Am I flattered? Yes. Does it stress me out, to have the bar set so high, just for me, in a class where everyone else seems to do the bare minimum? No. Because I enjoy research. I enjoy reading. And because, simply, I like to hear myself talk via word documents if I can help it, and when the standard is set so high for word and power point documents, I get in my zone.
But now my project is over; my research into the daily lives and religious practices of the Etruscan civilization is over, and my brief but lovely time with my characters Ramtha, Larth, and Caile, are over. I'm actually sad about this, despite my illness over editing the story so many times.
What's next? British Literature! Huzzah!
Separate names with a comma.