Imagining Stuck

Writer’s block sure does suck.

(I’m sick with a miserable spring cold, and hepped-up on cold medicine)

Gravity is serious business, and while I know things are cyclical—- the rocket cannot exude infinite fuel and continually break earth’s atmosphere— I’m not so understanding with myself and the laws of physics on my will. Why can’t I keep moving at supersonic speed? Why do I have to run on fumes for a while? Why is recharging necessary, and can’t I just keep burning so brightly and fantastically ALL THE TIME?! Um… nope. No, I can’t. No one can.

Years ago, before I married my David, back when we were just best friends and hadn’t cut each other to shreds with the expectation and shattered dreams of our marriage, he said to me: “Life is pain. The sooner you get over it, the better it will be.” This is reflective of the form of Buddhism he was then practicing, and I knew it, but I wanted so badly to cling to my rose-colored glasses and my sunny optimism. Letting the world break me just wasn’t an option.

(*cough cough cough* no matter how many kegals you do, after birthing three nearly 9 pound babies, nothing can save you from a coughing fit)

I still feel that way. Oh, don’t get me wrong- I know what he was saying— life is hard, and it’s gonna hurt you, chew you up, and sunny optimism isn’t going to stop it. And in a way, he was right. Looked at from one vantage point, life has sucked and the pain and heartache have just overflowed and overflowed. But much like the rocket who cannot indefinitely defy gravity, neither can pain last forever.

If I just shift my perspective ever so slightly, the pain, the upheaval, the uncertainty, the grind, the hardness of life just melts away. Even writing that sentence, I had to stop myself from adding “beauty”… because it’s all around us. We just have to give up our need and desire to control everything. And damn, that’s a hard thing to do.

(Cloraseptic throat spray is one of the most vile taste in the world, but dang… the relief is sweet, even if brief)

I never thought of myself as an optimist- growing up, I was pegged as the too-thoughtful girl who was slightly morose and spent a lot of time thinking Big Thoughts. Even fairly young. I remember standing out by the street when I was about my daughter’s age, under a steel grey California sky, inhaling the scent of scattered raindrops on warm gravel, and staring off into the distance. I had on a lavender shirt. Then I went inside and wrote a poem about how I felt, and considered myself very deep. My mom probably rolled her eyes, and told me to go play. She was right- an introspective child sometimes needs to be kicked out of her own head. But I was okay, too, just the way I was.

What’s my point? I don’t know. Sometimes I need to kick myself out of my own head and enter the world of action. Back to gravity… because my default state is to reside within, it’s too easy to stay in my comfort zone. I can build castles and monuments to whatever I’m ruminating on inside, and then I can expect the folks who people my life to entertain to castles as though they are real. It’s not fair.

(*squirt squirt squirt* GAG… Ahhhhhhhh….)

I figure out who I am by writing. When I’m just in my head, it’s like the center of the cyclone in the Wizard of Oz. The only way to calm the storm is to open it up, and allow the whirlwind to coalesce into something tangible. It’s time again to come out of my head, and use what I’ve learned and get back to the business of defying gravity.

(Right after this nap)