Friday, March 20, 2009

self worth: the never-ending pursuit

Last night, after workshop, I came home to my sleeping husband and I was in the mood to share. Workshop had been full of emotion. With ten of us, it happens sometimes that there's a leak in the boat. Someone feels dissed, or insulted or threatened. I wanted to download all of this with Kirk, the way he does with me sometimes after basketball when a fight breaks out on the court amongst his long-time hoopster friends.

I yakked on about how much I love my writer friends, and what had transpired during the evening's session. I offered the anecdote that one member gave as a way to help the other member who felt shut down. I don't think I was very articulate. It was the red wine mush-brain syndrome. The, "I've been up since 5:30 a.m. and now it's 11, and we have to get up at 5:30 again" thing going on there in the bed. I was trying to convey the relationship between language and emotion, and it was late. Too late.

"That's nice, Honey," said my husband, whose sleep I had interrupted.

This morning though, at o'dark-thirty, as he bounded out of bed to grab his basketball knee guards the way you only do when it's the Friday launch pad day of spring break, he'd thought over the broohaha I had assumed he'd not absorbed.

"I guess I just don't understand the creative process," he said. "What writers go through. Seems there's a lot of suffering."

He wasn't being dismissive, he was just stating a fact: artistic angst just isn't in his frame of reference. He views writing as a pragmatic endeavor. "You have an idea, you outline it, you write it, the end," he said.

"Well, yeah, if you're writing for the intellect, I guess," I said. Then, I went into the whole Dangerous Writing paradigm. "When you go for the heart, you actually have to open yours," I told him. "You have to get vulnerable, and sometimes that's messy."

"You know what I think," he said, "I think there may be too many girls in your writers' group." With that, my lover gave me a kiss and then bounded off in his basketball outfit to get in a little chipping, pushing, shoving and dunking in before work.


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