I plan for the perfect writing day.
I even finish my morning rituals the night before. I sort the laundry and load the dishwasher. I wipe the counters clean and make certain the downstairs bathroom is “company ready.” Just in case a neighbor drops by. Then I file the papers piled high on my desk.
Everything is ready.
In the morning, after the kids go to school, I plan to start writing right away.
But everything goes awry.
Then, as soon as I return from dropping off the kids at school, I receive a phone call from my 10-year-old in the school office. She tells me the school flier was wrong, and the fourth-grade-picnic-with-parents is today not tomorrow. And I signed up to bring drinks.
Next, I get a message from the university. The textbooks for my summer class are ready to be picked up.
Now I need to make three trips. To the grocery store to buy Capri Suns. To the college campus to pick up my textbooks. And to my daughter’s school to attend a picnic. None of which can be done in my Green Bay Packer pajama pants either. This means I also need to shower and dress like someone who isn’t a stay-at-home writer. Plus, I should expect a plumber sometime between 9:00 and 2:00.
So much for my writing day.
On the outside, I roll with each detour. But on the inside, I wrestle with my yearning to be still. I want to write and allow my inner thoughts to find their way to the surface through my pen.
As each hour ticks away, I feel like Odysseus tied to the mast while passing the sirens.
My desire. To write.
So close. Yet unattainable.
The act of writing quiets my restless soul the way a change of note resolves a dissonant chord. But sometimes, despite our best efforts, we need to put our writing on hold for just a little while longer. Because real life beckons.
And what would our writing be without a real life to sustain it?
Our writing may be birthed in the blessed margins of solitude, but it’s conceived in the sacred moments of life shared together.
Yes, I’m a writer, but I’m also a wife, a mom, a teacher, a friend.
Have you ever had a writing day get derailed?
Today, I’m giving thanks . . .
- for a home with running water
- for a picnic with my favorite fourth-grader
- for a summer class to teach
- for Green Bay Packer pajama pants
- for a writing desk that always welcomes me when I’m ready
- for a family that makes life worth living
Linking with Ann.