A Round of Words in 80 Days
Round 2 2014
The writing challenge that
knows you have a life
I haven't checked in since May 31st in the midst of Merlin's illness. He lingered for 8 days. One of the hardest days was Monday June 2nd when I discovered that it was likely that the morning I found him unconscious he had recently nibbled on a toxic plant. I went into a tailspin of shame, guilt, and self-recrimination.
He crossed the Rainbow Bridge on the morning of June 4th sometime between 8:30 am, when he looked up at me when I lifted the lid off his crate, and 10:15 when I got up the final time that morning and found him stiff and cold.
I'd been unable to lay down before 3am because around midnight when I started to I found Merlin laying in front of my feet with his head on the toe of my right shoe. His crate door was two feet away. He had not left it on his own steam since mid-morning. All day I'd lifted him out to put fresh pads in his crate and wipe him down about every three hours, helping him drink water and then cuddling him for awhile before putting him back in.
He was chilled so after I'd cleaned him and the crate up, I cuddled him inside my fleece vest with one of my raggedy T-shirts wrapped around him, telling him the stories of the special moments he'd given us until I started having hypnogogic episodes and loosening my hold on him before startling awake again.
During those eight days I'd put caring for Merlin at top priority and let everything else slide, including my early bird schedule. Between the morning I found him unconscious and the weekend after he passed I'd fallen off nearly all of my new habit horses.
The spreadsheet I'd been featuring in check-ins for over a year would have had zeros or Ns across the board for most of June except for MISC WORDS which began to soar the last week of May as seen in the last check-in.
But then I fell off the habit horse of updating the spreadsheet. And partly due to that, the check-ins.
I didn't make much effort to get back on any for over a week either. With my June 10th post, Time to Find a New Normal, I declared my intent to take a hiatus from my normal posting lineup and lower daily posting's priority several notches until I'd caught up on things that impacted physical and emotional health and personal integrity. Since then I've been running several days behind on getting my posts up though I've been beginning the drafts nearly everyday.
One of the things I began doing the day after saying so long to our Mr Wizard was purposefully seeking out things online that were uplifting, motivational, useful, inspirational, amazing or hilarious. These then became the subjects of my posts.
I've done some mood elevating activities as well. Like pulling out the box of summer clothes I'd packed away last fall. And pampering my feet with a pedicure and new running shoes. And then setting the date and time to go running with my cousin's son's wife who runs 5 kilometer races--Sunday June 29 at 3pm.
Several of the things I found on my mood elevating explorations online were directly related to story or writing. I've posted two in the last two Friday Forays in Fiction and have another in the works for this Friday:
One of the habit horses I fell off during the ordeal was fiction writing. But I didn't write less only different. And a great deal more. Beginning that first morning while sitting still with Merlin inside my vest I tapped into a well of memories that became a gusher. Memories of Merlin's 14 years and those entwined with them soon tangled with earlier and earlier memories many attached to insights I had to record.
But when I found them invading posts they didn't really belong in I moved those paragraphs into my WhizFolder ap and began following the threads where they took me. It's a bit like journaling for some stretches but more like storytelling in others and occasionally segues into poetry.
So I'm not going to fulfill either my ROW80 writing goals or the JuNoWriMo ones. Now Camp NaNo is about to start and I've not yet set my goals or signed up and thinking about it makes me feel weary instead of enthused. Tho if I declared my NaNo project to be memoir I could just keep letting those memories flow onto the screen. I'm sure I exceeded 50K in June with that...whatever it was...as I was frequently exceeding 2K a day.