Saturday, May 25, 2013

Excuses, excuses

At my most 'watermelon'
             You’re probably wondering if I’m dead. I’m alive and well after a long, unannounced hiatus from my blog.

            It may look like all these months I haven’t been writing. Oh, but I have! First there was the super top-secret film treatment for a children’s animated feature; then there was the polishing of a book on ancient Chinese supernatural stories about as thick as Encyclopaedia Britannica. Then came the English translation of an Italian children’s story about aliens with super powers. I only write about super things.

            But, to be perfectly honest – because these are my ‘confessions’ after all – a few other things got in the way of tending to my blog. My four-year-old and I went to my hometown of Washington, D.C. It was a busy time. Halloween to prepare for. Lambchops to eat. Hurricanes to ride out. And when we got back to New Zealand, the Southern Hemisphere summer had begun. I had a tan to work on, though this was mainly to mask an unflattering pregnancy-induced skin condition. I had scans to go to, sandcastles to make. My tummy looked and felt like a watermelon. I ate melon, dreamt about forbidden prosciutto, about newborns falling over balconies. I began to waddle. Then there was another copy-editing job and just about as much sitting at a computer as my poor weighed-down bottom could take.

Excuses, excuses!

Because I wasn’t actually so time-poor as to not have been able to squeeze out a couple of hours a week to write in my blog. The truth was that I just couldn’t focus on anything more complex than being a mom and enjoying the summer. I fanned myself while sitting on the porch listening to children at play. I ate huge seedless grapes, swatted flies. I was tanned, rotund, relaxed. I even began to think my blog might have run its course, that I’d run out of things to say, run out of words.

It turns out it was just the hormones.

Because now that our long-awaited second child is here, born in March as heavy as a watermelon after all, I’m mysteriously drawn back to my blog. Back to thinking about my own writing on a weekly basis. About one day making a career out of writing. Wild and crazy thoughts like that.

And yet the excuses for not blogging have multiplied. Crying baby, crying boy. Leaking diapers, leaking breast pads. Mountains of laundry. Then we had to Rug-Doctor both couches after our anxious cats soiled them to mark their territory. We’ve had a flea infestation, a leak in the roof. An opossum stuck in the chimney. Oral thrush. Head lice.

Nonetheless, finally tonight I’m giving up much-needed rest to stay up and write in my pyjamas, not knowing if there’s anyone still out there patient enough, interested enough, forgiving enough, to read me. To read this slightly less polished, slightly less full-circle, slightly less correctly-punctuated me. I’m writing not because I should but because the words buzzing in my head – at least the simple ones that sleep deprivation has not robbed me of – forced me to get up out of bed and (after first doing the dishes and re-checking my head for lice) sit down and write.

I’m still alive!