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It Never Rains In Southern California…

Perhaps that’s true, but the tears still flow – for joy, for fear, for sadness, for guilt – and it all stems from breaking out of my comfort zone, headed toward new paths, leaving behind that which I knew so well.  The urge to go back is strong at times.  Some days I feel like I’m in over my head, swimming in unfamiliar waters.  It can be scary at times and exhilarating at others.

 This journey that started a few months ago has been an odd mix of freedom and bondage.  I’ve had the freedom to pursue goals in Los Angeles with the determination of a locomotive, yet a part of me is still tied to old habits and beliefs I embraced in Idaho.  If you can imagine that one… yeah, I’m feeling like an emotional Gumby being pulled apart.  

I ain’t gonna lie. It hurts terribly to be apart from my boys. This time away from them stretches my emotional boundaries farther than I ever thought possible.  Those days when my boys text me “I miss you :(” are the hardest on my heart.  I battle the “being there now” versus the “paving the road for a better parent, a better me, a better future for us all.”  But the same guilt that causes me to pause and question my reasoning is the same guilt that motivates me to push forward.  It’s a guilt that won’t let me stop until I fulfill the promises I’ve made.  And quickly.

~“Strong is what happens when you run out of weak.” ~

I’m much stronger now, physically, mentally, and emotionally.  The softer edges have once again sharpened, but in a different way.  I’m decisive and quick to rid myself of that which doesn’t serve me anymore.  Every moment is motion forward.  And when the time is right for my boys, they’ll walk beside me, albeit on their path, and hopefully I’ll have done one or two things that they can learn from.

Besides… I can’t turn back, because I know too much.  I know I have focus.  I know I have perseverance.  I know I won’t cave under pressure.  I know that by stepping out of my comfort zone, I’m expanding the boundaries exponentially.  I know “fear” is no longer a part of my vocabulary.  I know I can step into the thick of things and figure it out.  I know what I’m capable of by the progress I’ve made and the people I’ve met.  I’ve seen the true me.  It’s the me I want to show my boys.  It’s the me I want to show the world.

Hang on, because the ride is far from over…

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I Really, Really Want It…Don’t I?

Photo: supernaturalbotanicals.com

During one of my rare moments of attempted meditation, my mind was wandering to stuff like…I need to finish the day job so I can get back to editing the WIP, read and comment on blogs, cruise Facebook friends, blah, blah, blah…oh, and infuse extra caffeine tomorrow so I can double the workload so I can take the weekend off to write…

And in the midst of the chatter, a very nondescript face emerged in my mind and my brain chatter came to a screeching halt.

All this person said was, “Are you ready for this?  Are you really ready?”

I stared at the empty face.  Blink.  Blink.

“Because it will all change.  Are you ready to let things go?”

I knew he was referring to my intended writing success.  And my answer?  Hell yeah, I’m ready!  It’s what I’ve been working towards with this WIP for the last year, isn’t it?  But damn, if it isn’t taking forever!  There are so many things that are holding me up!

Let me back up here and give you an explanation.  I work about 70 hours a week typing medical reports, raise two boys, a dog, and a hamster.  I exercise, socialize a little, and write.  I’m disciplined and have my orderly (sort of) way of structuring my days so I can get it all in.  Most of the time my days go sideways, throwing off my already loosely organized schedule, or I become bored out of my mind with the day job and start cleaning out the refrigerator or hanging out on Amazon, looking through the vast selection of ebooks.  By the time 10:00 p.m. rolls around, I’m more tempted to lay down for just a wee bit, than I am to edit.

But I’d push myself and muddle through a handful of pages, call it a night, and promise myself and my dog to do better tomorrow.  Guess what?  Yeah, same deal for the rest of the week.

Some days are better than others WIP-wise, but certainly not where I want to be.  I really want this routine to change.  There’s never enough time! I whine really, really loud.

So there I sat, after being mentally slapped upside the head by some guy whose face I can’t even see, asking me a very real, very serious question.  I had to think about that one for a minute (that minute actually lasted all day).

Was I really ready?  I mean, I can see how things in my life would change when my novel starts selling.  I can see how my tidy little routine will need to be overhauled and restructured.  I can see how certain people would have to take a back seat due to time constraints or obligations.  I can even see a change in scenery would be possible.  Can I do that?  Can I put people and places on hold if the success of my novel demanded it?  My ego screams YES!  Hey, Subconscious!  Whaddya say?

No answer…or maybe its voice is too quiet for me to hear.

Photo: flickr.com by viZZZual

Was this my block?  I began to wonder if my explanation was my excuse for not moving forward faster.  On some deeper level am I uncomfortable with success?  Am I sabotaging my efforts because subconsciously I have an issue with stepping out of my comfort zone?

Though I talk out loud about my plans for success, the energy I’m putting out there may not hold that same intensity.  So I imagined success and what it meant for me.  I envisioned finishing my novel.  I visualized it being well-received.  And then there was that familiar feeling – the one that would ball up in my throat when, as a teenager, I’d sit at the top of the roller coaster tracks, just before the cars would take the big plunge.

Photo: throughthefencebaseball.com

Anticipation?  Excitement?  Fear?  Wishing all of a sudden I wasn’t sitting so high up?  Is that where my head has been at?  Am I going through the motions of writing when my intention was never to take the plunge?

Am I using the very same situation that I so desperately want to change as my excuse for not reaching the success I crave?

Sometimes it’s hard to tell which camp we’re in when insecurities/uncertainties run deep or are camouflaged as another emotion.  I could definitely see how my teeny quirk of being a control freak would lead me to hang on to my tried and true routine, instead of free falling into uncharted waters.  It’s safe in my little world, and though I claim to be a brave, strong person, there’s a new neighborhood I have yet to explore, one whose fence has been too high to look over, but one that I’ve managed a glimpse of through the knot holes.  Perhaps on some level I am unsure of myself.

Well, if that’s the case, I’ve got a lot of work to do, and I’m not talking typing medical reports.  Well, that too, but I’m talking about this major block.  If this is what is holding me up, and I’ve got a strong suspicion that it is, I’ve got me a sledge hammer and some determination, and I’m going to bust it to pieces.  Starting now.

ROW80, here I come.

How about you?  Do you think you have any blocks in any area of your life?  What do you do to overcome them?  I’d love to hear from you!