Thursday, April 21, 2016

It's not easy to write by Barbara Edwards

Barbara faces the bear
It’s not easy to pick-up my writing routine after spending the past five months dealing with my husband’s health issues. Some writers could say there is no reason to keep from writing and I tried. 

I found there aren’t enough good hours in the day. You know. Those minutes where the ideas flow and the words pile up are precious as pearls. I didn’t have many. I was driving him for medical appointments, picking up prescriptions, helping him with daily activities, cooking, extra laundry, shopping for groceries and sitting at his side for hours when he needed support or love.

I would sit in the evening after leaving him in the hospital and stare at the television as a blur moved over the screen. All I wanted was a good night’s rest. Most nights I fell into bed.

So now he’s recovering. The cancer has been removed. He’s doing exercise to regain his strength and I’m desperately working at returning to the routine I had before.
I will always be a caretaker along with being a wife.

Sculpture in Montana, 
I’ll never be the same.
I was surprised by the ax that fell on our lives. And I find that I missed writing more than anything. Writing is what I do. A writer is who I am.

The process is important. The regular hours doing what I do have been hard to regain, but I’m slowly forcing the other demands into place. 

I’m dreaming of my characters. I’m giving myself space to find my creativity. I’m letting go of the guilt for missing so much time.
Bundled against the weather
Do I have any advice for anyone else trodding this road? Hell, yes. Do you?

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Margo Hoornstra said...

Nothing worse than a loved one in crisis, Barb. It's hard to regain the momentum. Just remember all of those ideas and characters, pearls as you call them, didn't really go away. They just sat quietly waiting until you were ready to take them on again. Best of luck to you and your husband. I know these recoveries are hard, but not impossible. Tight, hard hugs!

Brenda Whiteside said...

If the mind is too worried, it's impossible to write. Hope life is straightening out.

Rolynn Anderson said...

Barbara, hang in there. You have been wounded as a couple, and the healing time is lengthy. We don't like to feel's a shock to have an illness take over like it has for you two. No wonder your world is upside down! But you'll get back on solid footing, taking a day at a time. Don't worry about the'll get back to it when you're ready!

Jannine Gallant said...

I find even a short interruption throws me out of my routine, and I struggle to get the momentum back. You WILL get into your grove again. Maybe not all at once, but small steps will take you where you need to go. Wishing you and you husband all the best!

Barbara Edwards said...

Thanks, Margo. I could feel those hugs.

Barbara Edwards said...

Hi Brenda,
thankfully, its better.

Barbara Edwards said...

Hi Rolynn,
Thanks for the supportive words.

Barbara Edwards said...

Hi Jannine,
Any writing feels good. Even answering your comment. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Barbara, I'm so sorry to hear of this hiatus in your writing, but I sympathize completely. I don't think we can concentrate to do well enough with writing when events like these take over our lives. Best perhaps to accept it but to keep thinking of your stories and letting them evolve so that when you do feel like writing, all those characters are there waiting for you.

Alison Henderson said...

Barb, I'm so sorry for what you and your husband have been going through. Exhaustion and worry can drain every last drop of creativity, as well as energy, and there's nothing left for writing. After my husband had a stroke two years ago, I didn't write for more than six months. I couldn't. Getting back in the groove has been difficult, and some days I still struggle. Wishing you and your husband a full recovery and all the best!

Leah St. James said...

Barb, we all go through periods where our routines shift and our loves are put aside for greater needs. I'm so glad you and your husband are coming out the other side of this ordeal, and so glad you're getting back to writing.

remullins said...

The most important thing now is to take care of yourself. There's no guilt in making sure you're physically, mentally and emotionally whole.
The characters in your head will let you know when it's time to write again.

Diane Burton said...

Barb, the others have given you such wonderful advice that I have little to add. I've been there--not with Hubs but the "moms". The stress takes so much out of you. When everything settled, I still couldn't find the energy to write. Give yourself time. I found writing for fun--not serious, not for publication--helped ease the transition. Meanwhile, sending hugs and good wishes for you and your husband.