My husband and I didn’t live in the same town while we were dating. He was in seminary three hours away and I was here in North Carolina working and finishing school.
Sometimes we would go as long as a month or so without seeing each other. Not having him in my day to day life, I could fool myself into thinking I was a fairly unemotional kind of girl. But bring this man into town and I became an excitable, nervous, indecisive romantic.
You can imagine the expectation wrapped up in those weekends when he would come home. I always felt my crazy come out during our first date back together. Even though we had already been out together so many times before, seeing him again felt like a twenty-second first date.
If there was any awkwardness, any hint of things being uncomfortable, I would cry into my pillow after our date, knowing that it meant our relationship was in trouble. I would analyze our conversations, his reactions to me, my responses back to him.
I was a perfect delight to be around. Obviously.
Over time, we learned to anticipate the re-entry shyness that seemed to always come with our reunions. Awkward didn’t mean we weren’t meant to be together. It just meant when you don’t live in the same town, it takes a little bit of time to reacquaint.
Writing is like that for me. It’s been a few weeks since I’ve sat down and worked things out in words – and coming back to it can feel a little awkward. The longer it’s been, the harder it is to get started.
There are two things things that usually work to wake me up from a writing slump.
First, I wait. I let myself off the hook from having to write something. This week I watched a lot of news, made some lists, read Blink by Malcom Gladwell, flew to Nashville with my husband. We had things we had to do and things we wanted to do, and during all of that time, I didn’t feel pressure to write something. I wrote a few things privately in my journal, but mostly I didn’t write at all.
But now that Tuesday is here and the kids are in school and some projects are waiting for me now that I’m home? I realize the time for waiting is over. And I do the only thing I can do when I feel stuck: I write.
So on this Tuesday that feels like a Monday, I’m writing here to get the cobwebs out. And for those of you who are subscribed to the Tuesday newsletter, it will go out on Wednesday this week. I love being the boss of me.