Daily Archives: April 9, 2012

First Sunday: a Peaceful, Easy Feeling

If you wish to skip to the ROW80 check-in, go here:

In truth, the title is more “wishful thinking” than an actual statement of affairs here at the Mabee residence.  We’ve had some issues with adjusting to being home for Spring Break…and, I must confess, my renewed participation in this Round of Words.

I don’t mean to suggest that things are bad, just issues have arisen and they are making things more challenging than I would like.  I keep having flashbacks to my youth and “wince-forwards” of  how I had feared I would become my parents.

I have, and I haven’t.  For a long time, I feared it would be me whose temper would flare without warning.  I lived with the horrified certainty that it would be me whose hand would swing sharp and sudden, leaving devastation and tears in its wake, while my spouse would try to pacify and defuse the situation by helping out or stepping in to bear the brunt of anger, indifference and juvenile rage as my mother often dealt with from both my father and I.

Well, things aren’t that bad yet.  But then again, this is only me looking at my present and projecting my childhood into my son’s future.   And in all of these prophesies, I never realized I’d come to take my mother’s role, not that of the man I so resembled throughout my youth, in manner, appearance and action.

Maybe it’s because I became a mother….  Maybe it’s because I never cared about a clean bedroom as a kid that I cannot get invested in this battle more than trying to keep it from becoming an all out war.  To me, even now, the privacy of my son’s room should be his space.  I do have some ‘minor’ expectations (an escape route from bed to window and door in case of fire, which, given the room’s layout means one straight line…very easy to do, and send out the dirty laundry so I can wash it).   Generally I understand the need to stew things out, to have ‘the world’ laid out at my feet for use.  A common criticism I used to hear was that ‘You haven’t touched that in weeks, can’t you clean it up now?

Answer: No.  I usually left something out so I knew what I had, so I could see it in “action’ and often it became stage setting for the creative play I was involved with.  Of course, I cannot say for sure if these things are why my son leaves his things out, but the style is staggeringly familiar.

And maybe it would be better if my father had been able to instill in me enough…I don’t know, fear, respect, willingness to change…  because for all that it allows a certain level of “creative mind’ work, it is a habit that can eventually lead to chaos.  Broken toys at best…  the inability to function at worst.  For example, don’t ask me to try to organize things…  I almost can not do it.   My mind doesn’t work that way.  It doesn’t see neat boxes.  It sees panoramas, it sees things in a past, present and future all at once.  I can still picture my bedroom as a child and remember how I moved certain pieces, using clay to make LiteBrite pegs stay on my model horses so that I could enact complex rituals for a royal wedding from two warring nations.   I can remember exactly where I kept the pieces of wallpaper I tore off the wall (and why).

In a place I was allowed to consume fully, I can visualize it perfectly.

The reverse holds true too.  I cannot stand being in a place (that I once had consumed in this fashion) that has changed and ‘become’ someone else’s.  It looks and feels wrong, not just to my mind, but I actually see visible overlays and disconnects.  I don’t deal well with change at all.  Not on any level.

This actually segues with something I was reading today about men versus women.  A silly “relationship aid’ post, its authors make some amusing generalities about how man and women think and act.  I found it amusing…especially since I tend to be more “male”  by their measuring stick when it comes to my work.  I can sort-of multi-task depending on situation, but not well; I don’t shift gears well at all (sometimes I actually CAN’T shift gears until I’ve “slept on it’–time does wound all heels as my mom says).  An example of this?  I can lose whole conversations.  My poor husband!  I cannot count the number of times I had to say “Sorry, I was doing X and missed what you said; could you repeat it?” because of an inner dialogue between the characters in my head or the mental computations comparing a few different pieces of reading is so ‘loud’ that I cannot actually hear or process another thing.

Mind-map showing a wide range of nonhierarchic...

Mind-map showing a wide range of nonhierarchical relationships (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But, now that I’ve worked myself up to change…  let’s get it over with, eh?  Here’s my ROW80 update.  I need to get this done so I can go help my son with his bedroom tomorrow.

Here are my goals with the progress made noted in red;

  1. Work on former NaNoWriMo “novels” from 2009 and 2011: no progress here.  Although this has been a great week for original story writing, it has NOT been in either of these stories
  2. Do NO computer work on Mondays: this was a win and a loss.  I had no problem in turning off the PCs for the day (well, not quite true…  I was more than a bit “What do I do with myself?” than I’d like to admit, but at least the shakes only lasted a little while); the big issue however is that I need to change the day of this to either Friday or Saturday so I can work with the ROW80 schedule with less stress.
  3. Cut down blog subscriptions: Umm, well, I added three more blogs….  Oh, that doesn’t count.
  4. Reassess my goals at the end of the week and adjust accordingly: Doing that
  5. Devote time to better learning how to use the creativity tools at my disposal: Oddly enough I can call this a success too, since I spent some serious time playing with the newest version of Picasa for my Retro post on Wednesday.
  6. Exercise (details in the original post): the exercise has been sporadic but there.  Missed one day of walking, but did have two days of home feeling very sick too.
  7. Dance every day: could have done better, but I managed 3 days
  8. Type in 10 pages a week.  Only managed eight pages
  9. Create a Time Line of my story worlds…  I dropped the ball on this again
  10. Spend minimum 3 days a week with either #teamsprinty or the #wordmongering crowd for an hour: Done
  11. Edit 2 pages of story a day: did this, need to specify this as a five days a week

Well, there you go.  More rambling than you ever wanted from me.  It’s been one of those days.