When something breaks, we have various options for handling the situation.
For the purposes of this post, I’m narrowing the field to three because
A. This is my blog and B. I’m bossy and C. One of those two statements is true. (Hint: A.)
When we realize something’s broken (let’s say an air mattress or a manuscript or a blog)
- We can fix it.
- We can seek a new one.
- We can live without it.
This compels me to mention a fourth option – to surrender our power and wait to see what happens – however, this choice is my least favorite because
A. I prefer duct tape. B. I’m proactive. C. One of those two statements is true. (Hint: A.)
In case you hadn’t noticed (I mean, we’re all busy these days) my blog wasn’t functioning.
Also, my manuscript – especially those pesky opening chapters – was less than perfect.
And finally, two of our family’s three air-mattresses (yes three shut up) had slow leaks.
So. I explored my options and divvied them up.
Instead of fixing our old air mattress or seeking a new one, I decided to live without it while camping. I prefer being low-maintenance (isn’t that the point) and let’s face it:
If I’m not going to shower or change my clothes, I can slide into a sleeping bag and greet the ground in its natural state.
My manuscript was/is a monumentally bigger issue (except perhaps at 2:00 am on Sunday when I discovered a rock under my spine). But instead of starting a new project or living without writing, I decided to fix my old one.
It seems that in the working and re-working of my YA novel, I have strayed too far from my original voice and intent; so I’m going back to basics because at the very least it is me. My vision, words and goals.
And if it fails, I’ll have no one to blame but myself.
As for the blog, I tried living without it; but if you scroll down through previous posts, you’ll see that aside from these past two weeks, I’ve kept up my blistering once-a-week pace throughout my blog’s temper tantrum.
This space also didn’t want to be fixed. No, it wanted to be upgraded to a newer version of WordPress).
So I got a new blog. (I know it looks the same but shut up it’s totally new and improved.)
In the interim – when my subscribers weren’t getting post notifications and I couldn’t reply to my comments and the summer filled up with sunshine and sandwiches and smiling kids – I briefly surrendered to the brokenness.
In fact, I embraced it. I gave myself permission to not read other blogs or write new posts of my own; I barely glanced at twitter and Facebook before slathering on another layer of sunblock to head out the door.
And I’m not gonna lie. It was lovely.
But another truth is that I also missed you all. (Maybe even more than I missed that air mattress at 2:00 am on Sunday morning.)
I missed the part of me that faces reality.
So today, call me back.
(Don’t worry. I know that collective cheer’s merely an echo from the closing ceremony of the Olympics.)
Still, I’m back and prepared to hold your hand if you too need to address something that’s broken in your life.
If you want to fix it? I’ll share my duct tape. If you want to buy a new one? I’ll cross my fingers through your search.
If you decide to live without it? I’ll quote Thoreau for you. Again.
(Simplify. Simplify. Simplify. It never gets old.)
My optimism may be hanging by a thread. My determination to succeed is limping beside me. I might have to wrap myself in duct tape before this fight is over.
But I won’t give up.
Not on my new-ish blog. Or my fixable book.
As for the air mattress? It’s in the trash. Because, after all, I’m no Princess with a pea.
I am Julie C. Gardner.
And I’m back.