I looked at my calendar this morning and hoped that something had been magically erased while I slept. Of course, that hadn't happened. The week is still chock full of busyness, with at least one volunteer opportunity, appointment, or party for each morning. I guess in all fairness, Tuesday is filled with teaching, a task I willingly took on as a favor to the college. But I haven't gotten used to going back to school yet and so I look at my trek over to the lab as a duty, but one that eats away at any writing time I might have. How selfish am I, right? At least I admit my shortcomings.
Weeks like this, though, when the mornings are so filled with events that some of what needs to be done at home (including laundry and grocery shopping and yes, writing) spills over into the afternoon, lead to large bouts of self-doubt. The feeling threads its fingers in between every crevice of my brain, takes hold, and squeezes tightly.
Will I find time to write? How can I write when Melina is home? It's not fair to use the television as a babysitter, right? Can I stay up a little later or get up any earlier to get it done? I'm supposed to get this manuscript to the evaluator on March 14; will I make it? And I'm supposed to be putting a profile into WordPress this week. I don't want my new writing family to think I'm a slacker. The thoughts spiral out of control, only to be pulled in by myself and a good cup of coffee. (Not much can't be at least soothed with coffee, you know.)
The questions are endless and I don't have any answers that seem adequate. I do know this: that self-doubt can cripple a person to the point of turning back and not following that dream. And if I let one week get in my way, which I could easily do, then I'm not made of the right material to make it as a writer in the first place.
And so I punt, as Tim would say. I give in to the idea that my time to write and edit and do anything creative besides post a few blog posts will be limited to maybe 15 minutes a day. I clear writing from the calendar for this week, and come to terms with the fact that very little progress will be made in that arena. Once I've made that decision, the self-doubt has been pushed away, and I can continue with my everyday, ordinary, life.
But I'm placing that writing at the top of the priority list for the next week. Because I'm chasing a dream here, and I don't want to be chasing it forever. I'd like to someday, preferably soon, catch the dream in my hands and never let it go.