Butt in Chair
I used to keep a blog, many many many years ago, when the internet was new and shiny, and before I realized that there are loads of reasons why we can’t have nice things. I started it as a response to a writing assignment and – no seriously, don’t laugh – I had to print it out for the instructor, because I wasn’t entirely sure he knew what one was, or how to navigate it. It was on Blogger.com, and I used it to write about so much stuff and so many scary changes in life at that time, most of which had to do with the kids. Or me moving away from the kids to go to grad school. Or the kids moving away from me. I had a lot of my identity bound up in my relationship to other people (I saw myself in terms of what my role was to others, versus who I am as a person). I really enjoyed writing to my imagined audience of one, but I finally gave it up because I had to write a billion and one other things for school, and one can only write for so long before it becomes a slog.
I wrote about politics, the kids (obviously), my work at school, my fears – I also wrote about the things I was reading online (this was when Ms. Magazine still had a bulletin board – ah, the old days – and because I put my blogger address in my signature, I had a couple of readers). But like I said, I found myself less interested in blogging as time passed and I became more involved in school. And I’ll be honest – I wasn’t brave enough to put the important stuff out there. It was too raw and too scary.
I am trying – desperately – to get back into the habit of writing, and I want to incorporate as much writing into my day as I can. I try to do Morning Pages (my students have no idea that the time they spend doing an in class writing is really for me) and I try to summarize my day at the end of it in my little bedside “Feminist Agenda” journal. I know that writing doesn’t happen in a vacuum, and that it’s not going to happen without, as Anne Lamott puts it, the butt in chair approach. So I’m trying to get my butt in the chair, every day.
This does, of course, fly in the face of the training I’m trying to do. I am planning to run in the Tar Heel Ten Miler next spring, and I have picked out a training plan and am trying to get my diet under control (ice cream and pizza, whether plant based or not, is no way to fuel a running body). So I intend (hello road! Your paving is lovely! Where do you lead?) to write more about my training. I’m still imagining you, Single Reader, and I hope you stick around. Since you are in my imagination, that means that you absolutely will. How handy.
That’s not to say I’m not also going to consider other things – I love running with Straxi, and we are hoping to get her back into the groove, too. (By we, I don’t mean the Royal We, but instead, I know Straxi loves to run, and wants to at every chance, and I also mean her vet who constantly tells me she needs to lose weight). I also can’t help but write about current events – have you SEEN the world recently? Shit’s on fire, yo.
Another thing that’s brought me back to blogging is the work that Janae is doing over at The Hungry Runner Girl. I really enjoy reading about her and her little family, and about how she’s approaching training. She’s considerably younger than I am but she also has three kids at home, which truly can make you feel like you’ve aged twenty years overnight. But she blogs every day, and she blogs with lots of pictures and with stories about her family, and given that I have no in-real-life friends to keep up with, it’s nice to be able to keep up with her. And by “keep up with,” I am talking about stay current with, versus any sort of speed related situation. She’s fast. Me, not so much. So my intention is to consider whatever is important to me that day, as relates to my running or my writing, or whatever I’ve read in the news that’s under my craw at the moment.
So here’s to habits – let’s make one, shall we?