I find that as I get older, I feel less and less like a nut. More like an over-filled file cabinet with the frayed edges of papers leaking out of the drawers. Some days, I feel like this house – sort of washed out and in need of TLC. Roof is sort of okay but the structure needs work? The yard is barren but littered with detritus? Yeah, like my metaphorical (or is that metaphysical) yard of creativity. My consulting project is humming along nicely, but the pressure of the end-of-the-month deadline is nearing and I’m starting to get that tight feeling in the back of my neck, like when you’re lugging groceries in one hand and your small child in the other arm and they start to slide down your chest then they wrap their little garrote arms around your neck and catch your hair and the pain pierces behind your eyes like a sharp stick and they start wailing in your face and you feel flushed and sort of out of control and you just want to sit down in a quiet corner with your blankie? Yeah, that kind of feeling. But mental, not physical.
Doesn’t make it any better that it’s self-induced or that I know that I should pace myself. Don’t fall in love with the paying work. Get back to being…a writer. The mocking days are brilliant and the sky is a shimmery blue so deep you want to gulp it down (perhaps with a splash of vodka and a wedge of lime), but somehow, those good vibes are not getting through to my soul. Then, just when I feel less like sinking my teeth into something and biting hard, WordPress seizes up and I lose 300 words somewhere even though I’ve been meticulously hitting the ‘save draft’ button every few lines. But it’s the save draft effort that pops up the error page. Poops out is more like it. What do you mean ‘internal server error’? Nononono. Bad enough I don’t feel at all creative. Haven’t been writing anything for myself, but a village of new fictional characters are mud-wrestling in the creases of my brain shrieking ‘let me out, let me out’.
On other days, I conclude that I should get over myself. I’ve heard movie characters talk about ‘putting on my big girl panties and kicking that guy’s ass’. Now, I don’t know about you, but I’m not sure what ‘big girl panties are’. But what comes to mind is some middle-aged woman clad only in sensible white panties – definitely not French cuts – with her hair crimped into sponge rollers, face flushed, a determined (pissed-off) grimace deepening the lines around her mouth. Those cotton panties are sort of pilled with the lace drooping a bit around the waist. The kickee would be bent over laughing so hard at her approach, it wouldn’t be hard to fell him with a swift kick to the johnnies.
Ah, that made me laugh. Cleared out the megrims. Now, woman, back to work.