Yep, it’s happened again. I’m full stream in the middle of completing some of the largest goals I’ve ever set for myself, have multiple projects lined up out toward eternity…and life chooses now to remind me that I am a mortal human with physical needs, and with two children who ALSO have physical needs. Oh, not to mention a job. A rather large job that sometimes decides to completely involve my head space even when I’m not there. (Bother!)
My four-year-old came down with an awful cough two and a half weeks ago. She also has seasonal allergies and it’s been pollen central lately. Since then, I got a new project at work that is rather BIG and BRAINY, and then I got sick, and it’s like where I’d been swimming through clear water in terms of my writing projects, I’m now working my way through a muddy swamp. I keep a very tight schedule, and when stuff starts to fall apart, I start to feel scattered pretty fast. However, I’ve been around long enough to know it happens.
A couple of times a year, I hit patches where I need to resist the urge to go off into fictionland, and focus more of my attention on my actual life. I know this is a blog series about the WRITING LIFE, and you know that writing is very valuable to me and I will never give it up. However, when other parts of life begin to go awry, writing new stories is always something that can wait a few weeks. For me. We all have to pick our battles and do our own math on what part of our lives we sacrifice to get through the rough spots…I’ve done mine, and I don’t regret how it sums up for me.
In a few years I won’t have small children anymore (part of me is sad about that!), so I’ll cherish my time with them now and make the adjustments I need to ensure I’m there for them. You know, the books I write hang out in my mind for years before they get written…a few more weeks does not make or break any part of this deal. But for other parts of my life, I only get so many chances.
I took a day trip to the beach with one of my best friends this week. I’m so glad I took that day. We’ve been visiting that same spot since freshman year of college (16 years ago!!). I hadn’t spent that much time just chatting/walking/laughing with her since before I had my kids. And we took my dog, who is almost 10. It isn’t too likely we’ll make a trip like that again while he’s still alive. We had a blast. I am so glad I made sure the trip happened, even though I’m in the middle of this cold and super stressed with work and things.
Plan for life to happen. And plan to enjoy life. It’s important.
Instead of letting it stress me out that I’m now going to be a couple of weeks behind my very ambitious goal for publishing my latest novel, I can do the math, adjust my schedule, and be perfectly happy with my new publication date.
Life happens. Accept it and plan for it.
For a full list of Own Your Writing Career posts in the order they were written, visit my Writers page. I’ll be back with another Own Your Writing Career post next Thursday. Until then, happy writing!!
“Own Your Writing Career: Plan for Life to Happen” copyright © 2015 by J.R. Pearse Nelson