Because they do things like this.
What have I been up to? Writing and not writing.
Spring break has come to an end far too fast. My writing is coming along far too slowly…
I struggle with keeping balance. I have progressed beyond guilt, I think, but I am very aware of the time that I spend not writing. There is something to be said for the occasional life experience. Paul said to me the other day (knowing that on the two previous days I had only left the house once to walk around the block ), “maybe you should go to the mall or someplace with people…just to remind yourself what you’re writing about.”
But the truth is, I need no reminding. Even when I feel I’m on a social diet, I rarely pass more than a few days without seeing someone. I could probably have material to write for years without adding any new life experiences. I wouldn’t though–because a life experience is about valuing and taking full advantage of life, not about gathering material…on the other hand, if I don’t leave myself time (as I often don’t) to at least make notes about those experience–I forget everything.
I received FOUR job offers last weekend to do private editing/tutoring for ESL grad students with upcoming projects. I feel I don’t help people as much as I could, in terms of volunteering at soup kitchens etc., and I feel like this kind of work does help, and I enjoy it because I get to learn about diverse topics I wouldn’t otherwise, and I could probably use the money…but the fact is that these same jobs are very time consuming, and a bit draining…the exact reason I am not teaching this semester. I turned down three but took one because I had already worked with the student.
I really need to EXERCISE. It is very important for my health as a cancer survivor, many studies have shown (I believe it’s very important for anyone) and yet I am again tempted to write through the hours it seems to take each time I do. This in particular I have to fight–the temptation to spend all my time in this mental pursuit and give short shrift to my body. I know it’s no way to pace myself, and in the end I will write more and better if I eat well and feel good and take time to make myself NOT THINK.
To that end, even though I never called people I promised to this week, and I never made the road trip to St. George’s Island that sounds good when you talk about it, I did once go to Tom Brown Park and walk on trails I had never done. I did go to the gym one day (although in three years I have still not tried the sauna, steam room or whirlpools that get rave reviews), and last night I went to class at Journey’s in Yoga, which has been on my list of things to do since it opened. I have also been on two nice walks with my friend Sandra, who lives nearby.
And, although this isn’t exercise-related, since I’m listing non-writing activities, I saw The Kite Runner, and Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, and I talked with my parents on the phone, which is kind of like an activity in itself. I have also sold a couple of books online, and need to post my new life for sale item–a super-8 camera. But I opened it up yesterday and tried to remove the batteries that are stacked lengthwise in the handle, but they seem to be corroded into place. Perhaps I shouldn’t have left them in there for ten years…