Maybe Pre-Dawn

My mind fills with so many thoughts I want to write down, need to write down, but then I’m sitting in the car or on the way to work or bathing the child or running or grocery shopping and then it’s the end of the day and I have not played my cello or practiced my language lesson, and most certainly I have not written down those thoughts and then they just fritter away. The difference between a real writer and me is that they find the time, make the time, take the time to sit and write the thoughts. I’m filled with story ideas, then consider the prospect of finding the time to write them and my mind nearly implodes. I don’t want to be this, but I feel nearly powerless to change it. Holiday season almost makes it worse. I don’t watch television and I wonder how anyone could have time to do so, even if there were something on that I would want to see, which there isn’t. I do read and read and read and read, in bits and snippets and pieces. Sometimes the New Yorker is folded open to an article for weeks until I finally finish it…Ah, it’s done. I could write during that time if I could get into the focus and get it done as quickly as I can with reading. Then I run across nights like tonight where the small child falls asleep early and the older child is entertaining herself and I could actually do it, could actually focus on writing, but I’m so out of practice I don’t even know where to begin, and so I end up here, jotting down nonsense and going nowhere. I have got to carve time for this, got to find some way to make it a habit again, but I just don’t know how or when. Maybe pre-dawn. That might work.

I can imagine getting to the end of my life and looking back and seeing all the time I could have done it but didn’t. Or living through a near-death experience and seeing those frittered moments. In this, I see the forest and not the trees, quite the opposite of how I am usually. I also used to be able to drop into focus immediately. I haven’t been able to do this for years now, not since I was pregnant with Isabel. That pregnancy sucked out my brains and they never came back. Isabel is extremely bright, maybe she got them.

Today I got some chocolates from another lawyer in my community. It was a little 6-pack of See’s. The funny thing is that it arrived in a box 16″ x 10″ filled to the brim with packing peanuts. All that to send a bitty box of chocolates. Silliness.

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