Daily Archives: February 11, 2011

Making Time to Write

After an exhausting week away, a week that involved shepherding my Mom through her graceful death at home and getting my Dad set up to continue life on his own, I had counted on getting back to my writing the first work day home.

A petal from Mom's favorite amaryllis

Writing is my way of nurturing myself. When I can get quiet and focus on finding the pattern in words and sentences and narratives, I can also hear what my own inner voice has to say. So by “listening to” my writing, I am listening to myself.

Writing gives me the time and space to hear what’s going on inside me, to sort through and process the events, emotions, experiences, and concerns of my days. Right now, there’s a whole lot of unsorted stuff inside me, and that means my mental and emotional balance isn’t so good.

That first work day home, Richard, who held up well through a grueling week of helping with Mom’s hospice care, only to succumb to a sinus infection and serious brain fog after Mom died, was still sick, needing a lot of extra tending. He was slow, confused some of the time, and his short-term memory was definitely impaired. To be honest, his condition reminded me of the first few weeks after his last brain surgery, and I was pretty worried.

He seemed better that morning, so when I headed to my office for what I hoped would be a morning’s work on my current writing project, I felt good. Then Richard kept interrupting me, and I finally lost my patience and temper. (My hair may be going silver, but I still have a redhead’s fire.) We ended up spending several hours sorting things out.

We also decided Richard needed to talk to the Nurse Practitioner in neurosurgery at the VA Hospital in Denver. She suggested that his brain was likely suffering from the swelling of a sinus infection, made worse by the previous week’s stress. (Whew! I had envisioned the worst, as you can imagine.)

But there went the day. No writing, except for this blog post.

Sunrise over Salida

That, however, was enough to gift me with two critical realizations: First, I’ve been in caregiver mode for a long time now; it’s not easy to switch back to caring for me. Second, I know what I need to do to take care of me. Write.

It sounds so easy, doesn’t it? Just make time to write… (Like “Just say no!”–not so easy at all.)

Some days go well; some days just don’t. That’s life. What I have to remember is that if I don’t get to writing one day, I can write the next.

What gets in the way of your writing time? What do you need to do to make time to write?