I’m writing this post out by hand initially because Torie is using my computer Archimedes (Medes, for short). Her ancient laptop developed a horrifying virus and had to be tossed altogether. So now, in the mornings around 8 a.m., I cede Medes to my daughter so she can chat with her husband, who’s in Iraq. I usually don’t mind too much, though today I got a little ants-in-my-pants around 10, eager to start my workaday, but what kind of massive prick would I be if I didn’t let her talk to her soldier man, just so I could have an extra hour to write? And besides, here I am spewing veritable nonsense… a post… for nothing! I don’t even have ads on my blog. sigh. Well, ants in the pants will become a Snoopy dance when she gets her new laptop in about a week. Anywho, so, that was neither here nor there, was it?
My process toward personal healing is still taking place. Recently I went through a rather catalytic event and am still dealing with the effects of it. There is one task connected to it that I’ve been finding very difficult to do, even though I believe it’s absolutely necessary, so today I decided to break it down into manageable steps instead of trying to take care of it all in one fell 20-minute swoop. This listening-to-your-body business is fascinating, I’m telling you. The minute I stood up to take care of Difficult Phase One, my arms turned into lead weights and I could barely lift the fabric-covered cardboard lid of the storage box that sits on my dresser. CARDBOARD, people. But afterward I felt good getting things sorted and separated and ready for Tomorrow: Difficult Phase Two. I was encouraged because my two-ton arms were communicating quite clearly to me that my instinct was right to take it slow. Yes, me and my body = we’re going to be the most excellent pals.
Also, yesterday I stumblumbed (I know) upon a magnificent aid to my children’s book-writing endeavor. I’m going to read one chapter of a classic kids’ book every day before I begin my work. Not just read it though… but study its structure and cadence, the way its conversations are handled, and the length of its sentences. I began with my penultimate favorite, Harriet the Spy, and found myself welling with tears as I reencountered its familiar words and the images they convey. The author – Louise Fitzhugh, bless her – taught me to tighten up conversations to make them snap a little more. For example, instead of writing:
“Today I ate my own toe,” Scooter said, eyeing Martin’s finger greedily.
I would write:
“Today I ate my own toe.” Scooter eyed Martin’s finger greedily.
Better, huh? Yeah. Who needs fancy-shmance writing classes when you’ve got the classics running around all over the place, pulling on your pants legs and squalling for supper? Awesome. Love! xo