The Stories I Tell ~ from The Word Cellar

Stories. Anecdotes. A free round of words for everyone!

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I love stories. I'm the one at social functions with a dozen new anecdotes. But I worry about hogging the conversation. Sometimes I tell myself that I'll be quiet and let others do the talking. But no matter how hard I try, my stories insist on bursting out! Here I can let my stories (the classics that I tell again and again, as well as new ones that unfold along the way) run free. I'm a professional writer and editor, and sole proprietor of The Word Cellar. I write for a variety of publications and clients on everything from green buildings and nuclear reactors to entrepreneurship and the arts. If you need words written, edited, or enlivened, I can help. Contact me.


Wherever You Go: Cranky thoughts on life

I feel blocked. I don't know what to write here. But it's not exactly writer's block. It's more life block. You know those days -- or stretches of days -- when everything just feels messy and chaotic and substandard? I think I'm having one of those. Instead of trying to hide that or make a poignant essay out of it, I thought I'd just come out and say it. So there.

That feels a little better.

Some good things have been happening:

  • My husband's birthday was on Friday and we had fun celebrating with his favorite chocolate cake and a few dinners out, including one with his parents.
  • My parents made it home safely from vacation, and I always feel like my world is a little more right when they're home.
  • I spent a fun day with a dear friend and her little sister on Saturday, eating groovy organic pizza, laughing, telling stories, and flirting with a 22-year-old waiter who made us feel young and cute and fabulous.
  • I did some good, hard writing and revising and ended up with an essay that pleases me.
  • I have some good freelance projects right now.

And yet, all I seem to focus on are life's annoyances:

  • My house is a mess. Really a mess. I'm never sure if my external environment mirrors my internal environment or vice versa. All I know is that when one is haphazard and unsettled, so is the other.
  • My sleep schedule is all over the place, which makes me feel less productive.
  • I haven't been exercising or doing yoga, even though I keep reminding and then promising myself that I will.
  • I still haven't planted anything in my brand new vegetable and herb garden because it's been raining all month. And until it stops raining, we can't clean and stain the deck. And until we do the deck, we can't have the exterminator come and spray for the wasps and hornets that have commandeered my back yard. And until we spew chemicals everywhere, I can't plant my garden. (Don't even get me started on the non-organic nature of all this. I'm wracked with guilt as it is, even though I'm assured that the chemicals are safe and non-toxic to humans. But if you have a better, greener way to deal with multiple wasp nests in the crevices of my house, let me know -- nicely, please. I have to do something; it's like a hornet and wasp airport out there.)
Oh my gosh. Whine-whine, whine-whine-whine.

Sometimes I get sick of being with myself. But as my dad says: Wherever you go, there you are.

Where are you these days? I'd truly love to know.

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add to kirtsy | 1:36 AM


Blogger bella said...

I appreciate this, that both these list are being lived out in your days. I always appreciate when anyone can hold both sides, make space for light and dark, clear and chaos.
And I admire you for just being here, right where you are, writing even when you don't what or how to say it.
I've been letting this be more ok in my life, to do things sloppy or messy or just get it out, even when it is not perfect or pretty. and I am finding that I feel much freer this way. and still, sometimes it scares me.
well, thanks for asking, thanks for listening.

5/21/2008 10:22 AM  
Blogger Jena Strong said...

I'm here.

Like Bella, I admire you for allowing yourself to be honest and real.

Stuck is stuck. Not necessarily so bad.

I wish I had some deep wisdom for you. But I'm just here, and you're there, and this is real life.

P.S. Go for a walk. Even if it's raining.

5/22/2008 12:16 PM  
Blogger MamaShift said...

Is your dad Jon Kabat-Zinn? :-)

It's been a while since I dropped by.

Yup, sounds a lot like my life. Stuck in transition hell, for one thing.

A walk sounds good. Better than not doing yoga -- just like me.

5/23/2008 10:41 AM  
Blogger Jen Ballantyne said...

Hi darling girl, as the others say it is life isn't it, a part of it, we all seem to have those times when we are bogged down in the mire so to speak. I know personally when my house is messy and unorganized it definitely adds to any unease I may be feeling. I don't quite know what comes first though but when I clean up and organize I feel so much better and I can think more clearly, even when my front porch had pot plants full of dead plants on it I felt uneasy every time I walked to my front door. I have planted new plants in them and it feels so much nicer and it really does have an affect on how I feel. Hang in there darling, it will pass, these moments always do with time that's the good news, or you will get an urge to clean something and then just go with it. Love to you and I don't like to think of you feeling down so I hope you feel good again very soon. Take care my friend. Jen B. xxx

5/24/2008 1:36 PM  
Blogger Jennifer/The Word Cellar said...

*Bella: It's easy for me to let the chaos overcome the clear. Thanks for the reminder that I am actually holding both.

*Jena: Real life. A walk. I can always count on you to ground me in reality in the best possible way. Thank you.

*Mamashift: Glad to see you back 'round these parts. And now that you mention it, maybe my dad should be collecting royalties from Mr. Kabat-Zinn! :)

*Jen: Yes, it seems like a good cleaning is in order. I'll think of you as I tidy up and plant my veggie and herb garden soon. Thanks for your encouraging words -- they mean so much.

5/24/2008 2:33 PM  
Blogger GailNHB said...

I laughed and moaned as I read this. And I saw and heard myself: I get sick of listening to my ranting and raving. I am slowly learning to embrace the cranky parts of me too. Wasps and hornets for you - ants and newly discovered spiders for me. Writing hard stuff. Living hard stuff. Eating good stuff. Trying to keep up with the house and food and exercise and fun and tea and life. Yikes - and yeah!

5/27/2008 7:00 PM  

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