Dawn Colclasure's Blog

Author and poet Dawn Colclasure

Friday, April 01, 2005

Downtime, Part 2

I have one thing to say to all writers out there coping with personal trauma and debating whether or not to take some time off: Do it. Now.

I can’t tell you what “taking time off” from writing work has done for me!!! I feel so invigorated and rejuvenated. Sure my writing brain kept working (which means I’ve got some mags to query next week), but for the most part, I devoted my downtime to turning inward. I wrote a journal (and my hand got ink all over it when the pen leaked – yuck!), read this GREAT BOOK that really helped me sort through my problems (a book I’m also writing a GLOWING review for) and spent more time playing outside, getting out of the house and sleeping in than I did working on the computer. I HATE being chained to the computer (one of the reasons why I decided to quit freelancing for money) so of course I gave myself permission to ignore it. Sometimes I was online to answer E-mail and of course I used the computer for Internet relay calls (I use IP RELAY, a free relay service for the deaf and hard of hearing. I LOVE it so much – what’s not to love about free long distance calls?? – I’m ready to say goodbye to my TTY and phone bill). I also spent the week rearranging my house (getting rid of furniture that has been cluttering up the place and also extra junk lying around) and taking EVERYTHING out of storage that I was saving for “someday” to put up and use NOW. If anything, I have learned that “someday is TODAY.” The house sure does look different but, you know what? So are the people living here. Some friends have also pulled through for me, lending an ear and some really great advice to help me figure out just how I’m going to “rebuild” myself after all of this. It certainly has given me a new perspective and outlook. I am happy to report that I do indeed feel like a brand new person.

All of this has given me a new sense of empowerment and direction. I have finally pulled myself back up by my bootstraps to go out there and get what I want. I’m not afraid to be who I am anymore, or even to live the life I want to live. Nobody in this world has the right to take that from me and I’m still shocked that I actually used to think anyone had the right to.

But wouldn’t you know it? The same day I’m ready to get back into the game, I end up getting sick. Besides sneezing my head off, dealing with a stuffy nose and sitting on the couch zoned out like a zombie thanks to Aleve Cold & Sinus, I’ve also got watery eyes, body aches and a mild fever. Oh, well. Nobody said it was going to be easy.

I just found out I have a Skyline E-Magazine to proof before Sunday. Good thing it won’t be a print mag I’ll be sneezing over this weekend.


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