• Tag Archives fear
  • Writing Cowardice

    Imbolc                                            Woodpecker Moon

    Not often do I trash or put into draft something I’ve written.  I don’t say this because everything I write is wonderful, hardly, but because this blog is as much about living out loud as anything else.  Letting warts and all show through.  Most of us have a wart or two and sometimes it helps to know others do, too.

    Still, when I wrote the post below a couple of days ago it felt too raw, as I note near its end. This morning, though, on the way to the Art Institute with Kate, I made a comment about something I’d learned in touring the Art Show.  “It take a lot of courage, bravery, to show up, put yourself out there, let people see what you have, in public.  I admire that about athletics.”

    “Yes,” she said, “it’s like that in any area where you want your talents to be seen and appreciated, where you want to be the best.  Like in sending your manuscripts out.”

    As you’ll read below, the same thought had occurred to me only a couple of days earlier.

    The Original Post – from Monday, March 12th

    A good writing day, another verse of Ovid translated, only took an hour, picked up 30 minutes of treadmill time.  A productive day.

    Missed the aurora promised by solar storm watchers.  Apparently solar flares and snow storms have something in common, at least this year in Minnesota.

    I realized, again, today that I’ve been a coward when it comes to my writing.  I write it, look at it, box it up and put on the shelf.  Right across from where I’m working now, I can see 5 manuscript boxes, each with a different book.  Maybe 6 to 8 years worth of work.  And what have I done with it?  Next to nothing.

    Rejections are part of the writing experience.  Well, I solved that one.  If you don’t submit, they can’t reject.  I can’t really say I have a good reason for being so lazy or frightened or reluctant or ashamed (maybe, surprisingly, mostly this one.  It seems my work should, somehow, be more than it ends up being.)  Oops.  There’s that should word.

    Not entirely sure, but this one I’m working on now feels different.  It feels to me that once I  squeeze it and press it, making it more compact and at the same more descriptive and dramatic that I’ll have something I can be proud of.

    This is a little to raw for me.  It’s going into draft.

  • Shame, Guilt, Fear

    Lughnasa                                                  Waning Artemis Moon

    While it’s fresh.  A meeting this morning with our financial manager where we went over, again, the various moving parts of our investments.  It resulted in a down feeling, almost defensive.  What was this?  He said we’d be fine financially and I believed him.  We overhauled our whole approach to money now over ten years ago and have a great track record since then.  When I mentioned my feelings to Kate, she said she trusted in our ability to adapt.  Again, I believed her.  We have and will adapt to changed circumstances.

    It took a while to delayer my feelings.  First, I noticed anxiety (my unfortunately favorite response to the unknown), as if a vast pit were about to open ahead of us.  A pit of this and then a possible that and more stuff we didn’t know, or have impact on.  A little deeper I recognized a fear about being dependent on a bag of gold held in some financial dragon’s lair and only won back by dint of great effort.  Silly.  Obtuse.  Still, the case.

    Pushing a little further, a different layer.  Retirement.  When Kate retires, my long tenuous connection to the world of work would fray, then vanish.  It’s as if she’s retiring for both of us.  Or, rather, that I feel the imminence of retirement perhaps in a manner similar to the couvade, a strange situation in some cultures where a husband takes on the characteristics of his wife’s pregnancy, often placing a heavy rock on the belly near the birth moment and heaving it off.  So, there’s the unknown, the strange sense of money coming in from a pot somewhere far away, a feeling of retiring that is sympathetic or empathetic rather than actual.  But, that wasn’t the end.

    What finally came to me was a mixture of shame, guilt and fear, all related to no longer having a viable connection to the world of work.  This is my middle class roots talking.  As long as Kate practices, I have a tangible though fragile link to work and the income it produces.  After she retires, all semblance of that relationship vanishes.  In the central Indiana world where I grew up not to work was shameful, weak, irresponsible.  Kate responded with, “Well, I’m upper middle class and I don’t care! (about the abandoning work)”

    All of our life comes along for the ride and we never knew when one part or another will express itself, rise up and claim attention.