I have 9 drafts of stories in my box now. Most are songs, a couple are starts of prose pieces or poems. One is about getting things done. For the past month and a half, I’ve been telling myself I’m going to record the music, finish the poetry, and write more than 10 words in the productivity porn.
I’d like to publish something, but I haven’t had the energy.
Since I stopped publishing and mostly stopped writing, I’ve been to Florida for a week of sorting my father’s things. I’ve sung at church at least three times, including our very intensive solstice program. I’ve had five holiday parties or gatherings. I’ve had six and a half weeks of work.
I’ve also: Shopped for at least fifteen hours. Mailed five large boxes of gifts to various parts of the country. Driven to Iowa and back twice. Baked five pies. Submitted eight grants at my day job. Lifted at least 8,000 pounds at the gym, probably more. Had a couple of outpatient medical procedures, and at least one cold. Performed at least four shows. Walked over 350,000 steps. Eaten too much. Slept not enough. Forgot at least one box of vegetables from my CSA at the church where I’m supposed to pick it up. Read about 12 books.
In the past 45 days I’ve dealt with more complications and feelings and drama than I possibly can.
Today I’ve hit my limit. I can’t do this anymore.
I can’t do anything anymore. I’m out of juice, blown, kaput,
So I guess I’m writing again.
I’ve always only written when I had to, when the internal pressure grew too great, or if I had a paper due, or had a fucked-up dream I couldn’t shake (I’m looking at you, all my weirdest songs and poems), so it feels kind of strange to come to the page when I already feel empty.
But I really don’t know what else to do. I want to focus my thoughts before 2020 starts, and after six months of writing in 2019, I don’t know any other way to do it. I want next year to make sense, and in order to do that I have to put this year in order.
If I was more together, if I had more juice left, I would make a list here, something to plan for next year. Instead, I’ve only had 19 hours of sleep in the last five days, and seven of them were last night. I’m heading out in ten minutes or so to play at an ex-bandmate’s birthday party, even though what I want to do is go to bed. Because I said I would.
Tomorrow is my immediate family’s Christmas morning, since we’re all adults and we’ll be out of town on the day itself. I can’t remember what I bought for them, and I still have to wrap it all when I get home tonight.
Monday, two days from when I’m writing this, we leave on a long holiday trip to see my wife’s family in Maryland and my mother and siblings in Ohio.
I don’t have time for this. I don’t have time for anything.
But I thought maybe, in this waning bit of the year, maybe if I just made some notes about what I’ve done since I stopped writing, maybe I could get it together to start again. Even though everything feels heavy and dark and pointless.
Today is the longest night of the year. I’m hoping tomorrow can be a little brighter.