The writing retreat was meant to be an opportunity to work on my next novel:
to write uninhibited and let the story flow; to get lost in words. But I arrived with
one suitcase full of clothes, a fan, a few books, some snacks and a shit-load of feelings.
When I opened up the laptop to my novel, the words dried up and there was a knock
At the door:
“Hello feelings! Oh, you want to come in and disrupt my work? Sure, I guess I have no choice in the matter.”
My mishmash of sadness, fear, hope, love, support, anxiety, and pride (yes a person can feel all of this at once) that I pushed away since he announced his transition, poured into the room, and like the turbulent river below, the flood gates to my tear-ducts unhinged.
Poem, after poem, the words filled the pages and before I knew it I had a large bouquet of poetry crammed into the margins, phrases clumped together, searching for rhythm and meter. I felt less jammed up, less smashed into the margins of my life, giving the words space. Some day I will feel like I’m walking on solid ground again. Some day I will write fiction again. But in that moment, I was caught in the labyrinth of my real world emotions and what clung to the page was the poetry in my heart that needed to breath.
I had an amazing opportunity to write and so I wrote, poetry.
I showed up to the page and I produced some really good work that week, albeit emotionally charged.
So, don’t let it get you down, if you found that what you wanted to do during this pandemic wasn’t what you ended up doing. Let go of the rules in your head, the intention is 2/3 of the process. Be present, be now. I’m making my way across the pages, and I do feel better and stronger because of it.