Is it really here?
Did I really do it?
Why yes, I did!
When I started my writing project one year ago, a post a day for 365 days seemed like a pretty monumental undertaking–given that I hadn’t been writing regularly since getting married and having kids. It required a rearrangement of priorities, a new vision for how I was going to structure my time. I set out to explore the ideas of addiction and recovery in the context of my artistic self, and I was met with some pretty hefty resistance, from my inner critic and proxies for that critic–my husband’s resistance, my variable mental, emotional, and physical states, my health, my kids, my work…
And yet, here I am, writing post #391…that’s more than one post a day–how did that happen? As I stood there in the beginning, imagining a year of daily posts and all the time and discipline that this project would require, I felt a bit overwhelmed and maybe a little dubious that I would be able to follow through. But I had been meditating daily for a while, and my practice had given me some understanding of my resistance mechanisms, the excuses I tell myself, the inner demons that rise up to squelch any attempt to change the status quo.
Trying to anticipate the whole year in advance made the project seem much more difficult than it was going to turn out to be. I got it done, taking it one post, one day at a time. And isn’t this ultimately how it works with any undertaking, big or small? Everything is accomplished in a series of small steps, each one involving many choices, sometimes involving many different people. When we get things done, we get it done in the present moment. This is all we ever have.
The first months were about pushing through the fear and the resistance and just writing something. I sorted through years of words that had built up inside of me–many of my first posts are wordy, like verbal diarrhea just exploding out of me, this needing to find release, to express, to remember the writer that had gone into hiding in the wake of daily responsibilities as mother, wife, teacher, sister, daughter, friend. Once the initial franticness had blown itself out a bit, I started to remember the self that had been overshadowed by the inner critic, the self that was waiting for me. It stopped being about the goal of posting and–much like my meditation practice–it started feeling more like a daily homecoming; writing became an extension of my meditation practice, a time to tune into my self with words, to explore this life and my thoughts on the medium of paper and keyboard. Freedom came as I stopped thinking about fulfilling the goal of a post a day, and I just showed up for my writing practice. I’m glad I did.
I feel calmer now, more in touch with myself. I don’t feel frantic about my words or my thoughts like I did in the beginning. I’m here now. I can’t say I have experienced a 100% recovery of my creative self–what does that mean anyway? But I can say that a spark has been lit, and I feel enticed to keep coming back to it, to see what else might be illuminated as I attend more to this little spark I have been watching this year.
Thank you to all of you who have walked this journey with me. I set out to find myself, and I discovered something even greater–a community of soulful, beautiful, real human beings, walking this path of human being-ness with me. I’m amazed, deeply humbled, and profoundly grateful for the connectedness I feel now with many other writers and soul seekers. I have appreciated every like and comment–each one feels like a great gift to me.
I just wanted to say, Thank you friends. Thank you for reading. Tomorrow I’ll write again. It’ll be another day, another chance for homecoming…and there won’t be much of a change for me besides that 5 at the end of the calendar year. I don’t know if I’ll set another goal for this coming year–do I even need to? I have come back home to myself and I don’t plan on leaving.
See you tomorrow!