Lately I’ve had a hard time forcing myself to sit down and write. Nothing comes. I scratch my head. I flip through my notebook of ideas. I’m trying to force the muse and the muse is not happy. I try again. Still nothing. The baby cries and my time is up. Before I had children, my time to write was at night, music on, and the emotions would flow out of my pen quickly and easily. Very little self editing was necessary. Now I struggle to eke out a page. It’s like carving a sentence in stone; the process is slow and arduous. I get fed up and walk away before the hard work is done.
The truth is I don’t like to write. There. I said it. It’s bloodletting onto the page. It’s an invitation to a private part of myself I don’t always like people to see. I’m a people pleaser at times. A sensitive soul. An introvert. Being judged for my words is torturous. Writing is cathartic for me. I don’t always like to share, but when I do, magic happens. Other mothers tell me they feel the same way. It drives me to continue, to connect, to leave a small mark behind that is mine.
I relate to Dorothy Parker who said, “I hate writing, I love having written.” At least I’m in good company. It’s reassuring I’m not the only writer who dreads the task.
So I try again when the mood is right, emotions are high, time is critical. At the right moments the words flow like water out of a bucket in big gushes and I must write quickly to get it all on the page before it slips away. It is hard work. My hand hurts. I am empty. When it is done and I am spent, I reread what I have done. I am weightless! I did it! I am pleased. Tomorrow I will do it all again. I pray my muse returns with a bucket brimming with words.