This walk through the halls of “Is It Worth It” is an invitation to check in with myself and affirm that I’m still here for The Writing. I’m being asked to reacquaint myself with the landscape of my writing life, to see it anew, much like I’m being offered fresh looks on some amazing views right in my backyard.
For a poet, I think I’m late to the nesting and writing stages of coronavirus grief. But thanks to a cat, perimenopause and Natalie Goldberg, I’m here now.
The old version of myself would’ve called the experiment a big failure. But now, I’m happy to thank that prior self for her service and back away from her slowly… LOL. What I’ve come to is a place solidly situated in self-care.
it was terribly confusing all those years. it was training for not trusting words: i love you. and it was training in paying close attention to my gut. it took me a long time to recognize that it was right about my marriage. now, i don’t waste much time questioning it.
we all know the cure: the hair of the dog that bit you. if writing’s the way i make sense of my world, it’s the way i make sense of the world. there’s only one way.
i don’t remember my own grief very well. i’m not sure i’ve done much of it at all. nothing that has a narrative, for sure, like these memoirs seem to. and i can’t really access it: what was i doing while she was sick? what was i thinking about? who was around me? how did i feel when … and yet cheryl and natalie nail it. it makes me think of how incredibly important it is to tell the stories we can tell.
after i left, one of the uncharacteristic things my husband did was begin quoting the dalai lama. over two decades, my husband had never shown me a spiritual, peaceful, one-with-the-universe, kindness-toward-all bone in his body. that he suddenly connected with the dalai lama became a big joke to me (especially during periods of, shall we say, spitefulness toward me). i doubted his sincerity.