The Acknowledgement of Shortcomings

I feel like such a failure. My intention was to actually succeed in doing my public NaNoWriMo but, once again, life got in the way. Honestly, November is the worst month for me to take on such a project. My birthday always ends up consuming most of the first weekend of the month and then school begins to ramp up for the end of the semester. This year was no exception. It has been one thing after another, which isn’t a complaint, it’s explanation.

So, if you cared where that story was going I can tell you now, nowhere. I had no road map or plan (as it was obvious by two of the entries.) I will probably pick it up and start again some other time but as it is halfway through the month the likelihood of me continuing where I left off and finishing is REAL low.

One thing I will advise about the process is maintain consistency. Missing one day is okay, but I would not suggest it. Keeping the minimum word count at 1,667 is ideal. Going beyond that can be excruciating for the days when one just does not want to write. Or the ideas are just not coming.

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Calm Before the Storm

Today is the day. At one o’clock I will find out whether or not I have cancer. It’s surreal to say the least but I am not as nervous or worried as I thought I would be, but also I have been sitting with this for the past month so all the “feels” have gone through my body.

I will say that I do have this bad habit of disassociating from my true emotions as a way safeguarding myself, because when I do feel things I take them on and wear them like a second skin. That act of burying my feelings is most likely happening. This morning alone I have had four cigarettes and I just want more. I told the boyfriend I wanted to just sit outside and pretend to be a London chimney circa winter 1740. (Now I realize I got my timeline wrong and I wanted 1888 during the industrial revolution. oh well. I think he got what I meant.)

I’m worried but at the same time I know there is nothing that can be done in this moment. What’s happened has already come to pass and I am living in it’s wake. So at this point I just have to ride out the momentum and see where it goes.

I keep reminding myself that this is not a death sentence. If I do in fact have cancer it is the curable kind. More than likely if I were to leave it alone it would spread to the rest of my body and THAT would kill me. My initial intention was to do that, but after some coaxing from both the husband and boyfriend I have chosen to not take that route. Sure, I may possibly lose whatever sex life I have but I’ll be alive. And I’m told that’s what matters.

National Novel Writing Month

This Thursday, November 1st, marks two of my favorite things. The first being my wedding anniversary (5 years) and the second being the start of National Novel Writing Month or what it is colloquially known as NaNoWriMo.

If you haven’t heard of it and are a budding/want-to-be writer, I suggest you check it out. Their website is: www.nanowrimo.org. I went to their site to brush up on how and where it all began, (because I have this vague memory that it was started by a bunch of college students who wanted to finish their manuscripts) but I couldn’t find any sort of mission statement. So, I may have just made that shit up in my head. Who knows. If I did, that isn’t the first time I imagined reading information in regards to the event.

The idea behind it is that every day for the month of November you write a minimum of 1,667 words until the 30th when you reach the ultimate goal of 50,000, which amounts to a novel length work of fiction.

When I first participated I could have SWORN I read somewhere that you just write, you don’t ever go back and revise or re-read what you’d written, and instead charge forward until you’ve accomplished your goal. Once at the finish line you can look back and begin the process of editing. When I participated the following year that whole piece was absent from their website and, just like my fantasy of “how it started,” may have concocted the whole thing in my imagination. Regardless, that piece of advice is what I pass on to those I try to entice into the event. What I discovered is that this is EXACTLY how I like to write. In addition, I don’t like to plan that far in advance (however if that’s your process have at) because I enjoy having the story unfold for me as if I was reading the book. My good friend Matt told me that is the style in which Stephen King writes and I take that as a shining omen for my process.

The first time I participated I wrote my first ever novel and, also, the one I have since attempted to edit. (That was back in 2009, to get some perspective). It sits on my desktop taunting me. It wants to be published, but the thing I hate about writing is editing, and that is all writing is, to be quite frank.

From that first novel I wrote two subsequent sequels in the same NaNoWriMo style. One of them was absolute trash and once I was complete I ended up printing it and shoving it in some dark drawer, never to see the light of day. The one I wrote after that though was fantastic. I guess I just needed to get all the bad ideas out first.

It has been a few years since I did NaNoWriMo. Life has just gotten in the way and each year I set out with the intent to do it but ultimately told myself that I didn’t need the added stress of trying to write 1,667 words a day for an entire month added to my plate. This year is no exception. I’m just as busy (if not more) like before, which made me realize life is constant and I’ll always be “busy” but that isn’t an excuse to forego my art. Going against my better judgment, I have decided to rejoin the fun, but with an added twist. I will publish my work, to my blog, as I trudge along in all of its terrible, raw glory. (I may give each sprint a little run through the Grammarly program, but otherwise it will remain unedited.)

I encourage you to follow along, because it’s interesting to see how things turn out. Full disclosure, it will also be a train wreck, which is also kind of fun to watch.

P.S. I will be saving each entry under the category “Cursed.”

In the wake of initial shock

It’s weird how I’m handling this whole “cancer” thing. First off, without even having an affirmative diagnosis that it is the case, I am treating it as though I do. I am uncertain if that’s a coping mechanism, to prepare me for the worse, or if I just know. I say that because when I had appendicitis I KNEW and when I had pinkeye I KNEW. With those particular cases there was no doubt in my mind and they turned out to be true. However, in defense of the negative there were other times I was “sure” and they turned out to be wrong. You just never know until it happens. We can have our gut feelings but without fact they’re just assumptions. And I assume a lot. (This blog is nothing but presumption in regards to my life and experiences so… there you go.)

The one thing I am certain of is that it is going to be a VERY long month…

As I spend my time driving around for work or am left alone for any length of time the whole idea consumes me in this bubble and I begin to cry. At this point, it’s all I can do. And letting it out makes me feel a world better. What’s even weirder to me is the brave mask I wear whenever I am around people. It’s like I’m playing the role of a lifetime and I’m attempting to win an academy award.

At the base of all of this I could very well be overreacting. I could be fine. And in the end, even if I do I have cancer I’ll be alright. Chances are they’ll remove my prostate or attempt to shrink it with radiation. The only way I’ll die is if I do nothing.

From my previous post I had already chosen to do nothing, but instead I have moved onto keeping an open mind to the options. I did some research and the side effects vary and could be mild to moderate (I sound like a commercial for cialis.) The one upside is that the younger you are the easier it is to bounce back from erectile dysfunction.

My husband and I were talking the other day and he shared with me the feeling of purpose he has in life and I was proud of him. It was about giving to others. When the time for me to share my own sentiments I disappointed. I really feel like I have no purpose. I don’t really add or give anything to or for anyone. If I was gone I’d be missed but people can and will move on from the loss. I say this with no irony or angst. For me it is just a fact of life.

The only thing I have gathered from this is that if I ever want to leave a legacy with my stories I have to get on it or it will never happen. Maybe I needed this “push” to get me moving out of my lazy approach to success.

Concerns and Observations Part 2

I have this very sick feeling in the pit of stomach. It is too strong to ignore. I have repeatedly asked the husband if everything is alright and he has stuck to the stock answer of “he’s just tired.”

This weight of uncertainty is growing and I don’t know what to do. I don’t imagine he’s read my blog, he stopped doing that kind of stuff years ago. Even if he had, I’ve re-read it a couple times since my sick feeling began and I don’t think it had any kind of meaning other than what I intended.

Maybe he’s upset that I went out drinking on a work night.

Cutting the bull shit, the sick feeling is that it’s over. However I have had this feeling multiple times, with both. And neither time came to fruition. This time feels different though. He acted so out of character this morning. And even when I sent a text he took an extremely long time to read the thing, and even then the bubble was up for a very long time before he finally sent the above mentioned response. Did he write this long reply and then decide, “no, I’m not going to do it right now.” It would be just like him to keep it close to the chest until after I get off work or even after the football game tonight. (Our niece might win homecoming queen.)

Maybe, like my other post, it is just linked to the panic from seeing what’s happening around me and thinking I too am in this. (I need to find the term for this.)

You Know, When You “Know”

I have reached a new level for myself that I haven’t quite come to while not taking my anti-depressants. I went to write about my wonderful experience of having my appendix removed and only two sentences deep I ceased caring to write about it any further. Now, that could be because the whole ordeal was said and done in a few hours and already am I in tip-top shape (and where is the drama in that) or is it because I just lost interest?

I bring it up because it has always been a big point of contention with me and my meds. I usually stop taking them because they take away my want to write almost in the similar fashion as I stated above, but maybe, just maybe, sometimes what I have to write about is boring and doesn’t need to be said.

The whole ordeal was truly simple. I woke up Monday morning to cramps, which eventually led me to take milk of magnesia to end it, but what ended up happening was making the situation far worse. When I woke at 3 in the morning on Tuesday I knew then it was appendicitis and I needed to get to the emergency room as soon as possible; and having taken a laxative made the situation even direr. I dressed and woke the husband to tell him I was going to the ER. When I saw his look of confusion and annoyance I second-guessed myself. Maybe I was just being overdramatic and it was all in my head.

To put an exclamation point on that idea I tore of my ring, threw it at the nightstand, and then proclaimed “Whatever. Fuck it. I’ll just die,” and threw myself back into the bed, wincing from the sharp pain in my abdomen. Yeah. No one could ever accuse me of being a drama queen.

I laid there for a moment thinking about it and then decided to listen to the multiple voices that had stated on some medical website “go to the emergency room asap.” So I went.

If you ever need to go to the ER, take the advice I was given, go at 3 AM in the middle of the week. There was absolutely no one there and I was in a bed in the back within twenty minutes tops. One nurse told me that people usually wait until the weekend to go because they don’t want to miss work, or they specifically wait until the morning to actually have an excuse not to go.

The doctor who was assigned to me was this old man with a gaunt face who made me think of “Filch” from the Harry Potter films. I told him, when he asked why I was there, that I thought I had appendicitis, to which he rolled his eyes. Yeah, I’m sure it’s not fun having the internet around for people to self-diagnose. What made me like the dude was his casual, almost up-beat response ten minutes after my CT scan, telling me, “You have appendicitis!”

My husband didn’t go with me on this early morning adventure because he thought I was being overdramatic and that it was nothing. I took immense satisfaction in telling him I was right.

When he realized that I was correct, he felt like shit and took two days off work to attend to me. Which is nice, but why does he have to miss work because I have appendicitis? I guess I just don’t operate that way. If the roles were reversed I don’t think I would have done the same. Even my parents showed up to sit and wait with me, which I don’t understand. I brought a book and my Gameboy to keep me occupied.

(Sidenote: whenever you go to the ER take a book, it seriously occupies your time that it feels like the whole thing is a spa day. I took one when I went to the emergency room when I had a bad infection from diverticulitis/colitis. I spent 8 hours there, but the “Goblet of Fire” made it feel like maybe a couple hours.)

What this event taught me is to trust my gut. (Pun intended.) I knew what was up from the moment it happened. I also have been expecting this to happen because I am just like my mother and have had surgeries in identical order, just the ages are different. That said, I imagine the meds do effect my feelings towards writing. In the writing of this post I found that my initial thoughts were both wrong, it was merely just me second-guessing myself. What really happened, was I was going about writing it all wrong.

Maddening Midnight Ramblings

And there it is, the dark path of my thoughts. I was wondering when I would get here. It took a little longer than I had expected, but I guess the length of the journey doesn’t really matter now that I’ve arrived.

The problems with the truth, and me, is I want endless amounts of it. No holds barred. Because once I have it in my possession I begin to pick it apart and analyze every detail to see how it makes me a piece of garbage. Beneath the false bravado and arrogance I, at my core, feel worthless. I don’t know where it comes from. I’ve even tried to look at that beneath the microscope and have found nothing.

Charlie has told me things that make me question if I’m even what he wants. I begin to think I’m some kind of age appropriate beard for him. In the darkest parts of this mental path, I think he’s just trying to exact his revenge for the hurt I caused him in the past. Maybe that’s me just wanting to be a victim.

I’ve compiled a list of questions I want to ask him. I can’t do it now because it is the middle of the night and he’s asleep. They’re all ridiculous notions brought about by the fears and obsessions of a mad man. None of them are logical but knowing that and understanding are two different things. He’ll respond the same way he does every time I ask these questions, groan and begrudgingly answer them to shut me up. And I continue to ask myself if he had really thought about the answers and if what he said was even the truth.

Anyway. This post is entirely too vague. I wish I could divulge more but half of what I want to share isn’t mine to disclose. And I want to respect that. I’m merely venting this evening to get some of this shit out of my mind and into the void.