First Wor(l)d Problems

April 24, 2015

I don’t mean to be negative. I really don’t mean to be out of touch and distant. I’m not trying to avoid the spotlight and not trying to avoid people. But when I have to focus on life, that’s what happens.

A writer’s life is one of trying to balance everything they have going on in life—work, money, kids, family, crisis management—as everyone does with the added pressure of trying to get our own creative ideas onto a page and off to be published, sometimes on a deadline. Some people can do all of that and structure their lives well. Others will sacrifice one side for the other. You write in fits and starts and get little things in when you can while you tend to life; or you spend most of your time writing and forgo high paying work and possibly a family. I fall into the former group. I’m a single father trying to raise a tween and all the issues that come with that, and after years of having to deal with part-time work and money stress I now have to work everything around a full-time job and dwindling time. It’s a good problem to have especially when you’re tired of dealing with poverty issues, but it can be annoying when the writing output slows.

I am trying. It’s hard to go back to full time work, especially since I haven’t had a single full time job in six years. It’s playing with my head like I never expected but I am managing. The only problem is I haven’t been writing much. I look at the space between blog entries and sigh a lot, but I know my daughter is being taken care of. Still I am trying to not beat myself up about not writing more than I used to. I’m not as young as I used to be and even less disciplined with my time (if that is even possible), so that will take time away from getting stuff written. If I can get a sentence or two of one of my short stories down on paper I am happy. But it is still a struggle.

Writing always is and time has a lot to do with it. I haven’t figured out the best balance for all my needs now and it may still take a while to do. Once in a while I hope to have more on my blog than I would like. What I would really like now is to get my mind straight and get some sleep, as though going through the latter to achieve the former hadn’t crossed my mind. What can I say, I’m tired and out of practice.

Let it Rain

April 7, 2015

For the first time in three years I’m actually ready in case it rains today.

Last week I took Sophia to Kmart to do some shopping. I got my tax refund and did some budgeting to buy stuff for me and Sophia. She definitely needed a bathing suit for the summer and other clothes; I definitely needed work boots which I have needed since my last pair expired about three and a half years ago. Waterproof doesn’t mean it will last forever, and eventually the boots kept leaking enough to make having the boots useless. But since then I haven’t been able to have enough to spare for work boots—even from payless. Sometimes life caved in and money was suddenly needed elsewhere, other times what I thought I had for boots wasn’t enough to get them and by the time a sale came around, life caved in again. Also there were days I said the hell with it; I can manage with sneakers well enough. After this record winter downfall, that idea fell out real quick. So we went looking for stuff, and tried to find a good pair of work boots in my size and within budget. Luckily Sophia had better eyes than I did as she found a pair in the style that really caught my eye that were my size—whereas I couldn’t find my size of that boot.

Not that I want material things to make me happy nor can only be happy if I have money, but there is something good in the feeling that if you or your family need something—last minute or in general—that you can actually afford it without worry. This is something a lot of people take for granted until you find yourself in a situation struggling for money. It could be the idea of having to choose between a car payment or a mortgage payment, but I mean more along the lines of choosing between food or medicine or rent. I made the choice to deal without having boots because there were more essential things needed in the house, be it food for the cats or rent money. I’d make the same choices again if it came down to it because I need to take care of my family. Now the tides are working with me and I can make some choices that help me as well as my family. That’s a feeling you don’t get without some financial stability. Not a lot, but some which is better than none.

So yeah, it’s good to have boots on my feet again. Just in time for the rainy forecast this week.