To Blog or Not to Blog- That is the Family Dilemma.

Alright. I’ve had it. This writer’s block is 50% distraction and 50% unsure how to handle sensitive family matters and the privacy of my loved ones. And I’m sick of it.

I started the year out by going on sabbatical from work and contemplating quitting that job and focusing on writing full time. The sabbatical ended up being a shit storm of anything but quiet contemplative time. I made my decision, though, to work for myself. I still love that decision. However. I don’t respect myself as a boss. Otherwise, why would my new writing career have gotten off to such a slow start?

In February I was officially a freelancer. And at the same time I also started selling V3 because I went crazy for the focus it gave me to be disciplined and focused on writing while sitting alone in the house all day surrounded by TV, books, laundry, a puppy, and chips & cheese.  And also because I wanted the discount =)  You know what else happened in February? Kidney stones. Tons of them. I was sick for a day, then in the hospital a couple days, then had a stone busting procedure followed by more sick days and more doctor appointments. I finally gave up following up. I knew I had a piece left cramped up in my left side but I was over all the doctoring. So I left it until it finally worked itself loose and tortured me for one final time last week. Now. Could I get up and around and do laundry and such during that time? Yes. But the days broken up between doctor appointments, as well as the pain and pain medicine, hindered my writing process. It made sense at the time, and had I picked up right after that and gotten productive I wouldn’t be so hard on myself thinking back on February. But the truth is, I could have worked more than I did. If I had still been working for D.O.C. or Dr. Foote I would have been back to work the next day. Sure I might have passed out in the bathroom or fallen asleep in the middle of my sentence back in my eyeglass days, but I never neglected to show up and do my best.

On the heels of kidney stone February was cancer March. Something new came up in my Father In Law’s condition every other day. He was in and out of the hospital every couple of days. When there wasn’t a decision to be made, a task to perform, or a pep talk to give, there was just quiet time to dwell. “Working for the man” would have been a blessing at that time because all I did, when I wasn’t doing, was cry. I couldn’t write each day about the topic at hand because I couldn’t get past “My Father in Law has cancer and we had a bad day.” Until I wrote that, nothing else would come. But I refused to write it. As if putting it out there would have made it more real and harder to deal with. When in fact, writing about it would have likely been very helpful to me. Maybe to somebody else, as well. And definitely to my bank account. Those bills continue to add up even when you’re distracted and grieving. Looking back it’s so easy to see how just a little writing each day would have eased the burden on my mind during the crisis and on my financial situation in the aftermath.


So here it is August and I should be well on my way to having a big fat pile of assignments again, even after losing so many clients during the cancer period. But guess what. After almost 2 months of erratic behavior my Son was diagnosed bipolar last week and is in a partial hospitalization day treatment program for risk assessment and anger management. And I haven’t written about it.I have a family blog and have not written word one about our situation today and how we got here.  Partially because I have been so distracted that I can’t focus on anything else. Partially because my son is 15 now and there is a chance that people he knows may stumble upon this blog. Here’s the deal though…

  • Life is full of distractions! Everybody has them, yet they go to work and manage their obligations. The world doesn’t stop moving, and neither can we. Allowing myself to stop and dwell has set me back in depression recovery from the breakdown of ’08 and created more stress in getting behind in bills and other responsibilities. Withdrawing from friends and social situations has robbed me of support from girlfriends and the opportunity to create fun, happy, healing situations to balance out the tough ones.
  • Writing is therapeutic. And I’m a writer! Internalizing things is dangerous for me. Also, leading into summer I redefined Her Family Blog and set up new blogging topic schedules. I did that for all my blogs actually, to make them more honest and informative. But how can I achieve that if I continue to censor myself?
I was wishing the other day that I had maintained anonymity with this blog so that I could do and say the things I want to say without worrying about the privacy of my kids. But then it was suggested to me that I simply ASK them how they feel about it. After some thought and discussion we decided “it’s just life.”  And whether we’re dealing with experimenting with new medications to treat bipolar disorder or experimenting with new hairstyles or homework techniques, they are just “happenings” in life. They “happen” to everyone. And although I may give my own deepest darkest thoughts and feelings, I don’t give theirs.
Because it’s not THEIR Family Blog. It’s HER Family Blog. And the HER is ME.
So it appears I’ve been given the green light as long as I share from MY perspective and not give out pieces of my kid’s thoughts and feelings without permission. That makes sense and I love that they helped me define my goals here and work through my writer’s block. They are smart kids. I’m sure we all share that perspective =)