I received a very sweet email today from a reader that was forwarded from my editor asking where I was and why wasn’t I writing anymore. There are a few legitimate reasons that I took an inadvertent break from writing my column. They are good and true reasons and, I think, people will be sympathetic towards my prolonged absence.
My initial pause in writing happened back in September when I was preparing for my thesis defense. I managed to come back a write a few columns after my defense but I was a bit overwhelmed by everything that happened during the months leading up to, and after, my (successful!) defense.
And then Christmas happened.
Christmas, this year, was… busy. My presents weren’t wrapped until two days before Christmas and shopping wasn’t completed until the 24th. As with every year, my immediate family spends the night on Christmas Eve so we can all wake up and let the madness ensue. It was fun.
The complicating factor was that, earlier in the month, I had confessed to my extended family that I hadn’t hosted Christmas dinner since our son was born in 2011. We managed to bypass that portion of familial responsibility for (nearly) eight years. All good things must come to an end – sadly. So, 2019 became the year that we actually hosted dinner.
It was a lot of work. Mostly for my mom and my husband because people chase me out of the kitchen because I’m “always in the way.” Personally, I don’t think I’m always in the way – only a large amount of the time. I cleaned up and vacuumed instead. All jobs are important – so they tell me. Anyways, we made it through Christmas just fine but somewhere along the way, I fell out of the habit of writing.
Then, in January, I started a new job teaching English at the college. I have 100 students. It is a little overwhelming. I have been loving it though and hope that I can continue for as long as I can. But, as I said, teaching is a lot of work and that is part of the reason that I haven’t been writing.
But the real reason that I haven’t been writing is this: I got a new phone and didn’t add “write column” to my automatic weekly reminder for Monday evenings. When the reminder used to pop up, I would see it and think “I should do that right now so I don’t have to hurry to make deadline, (or apologize profusely for blowing my deadline).” Then the reminder would sit on my phone, haunting me, until Thursday (my deadline) and I would remember that I wasted a bunch of days and feel annoyed at myself for not doing it when I should have. I would then think, I’m just going to get this done on my lunch hour only to then get busy at work and miss lunch entirely. Maybe Friday morning will work….
These last few months have been gloriously, stress-free!
Just kidding. The stress has been about the same both with a weekly column and without. So, for now, please accept my apologies for my extended absence. I have missed you and I am happy to be back.