I thought I wouldn't but in the end I did join Alex J. Cavanaugh's Insecure Writer's Support Group. Sorry for the late post but I just returned from a trip and only now got internet available. Besides, it has been quite an hectic week. You'll see why.
"Why, oh God, why can't I just block the Dragon Cave, turn off the lights and pretend I'm not here?"
There's a popular saying where I come from. "Dios no cumple antojos ni endereza jorobados." The literal translation would be "God does not grant cravings or straightens hunchbacks." The message is basically God does not exist to do your homework. No, really?
For more years than I care to remember I had focused my mind, my heart and my whole being in just bearing it. Let Christmas be Christmas and me being there without being there. I became a master of stealth techniques. I could be part of the furniture and my mind could go into deep meditation about the year that was ending and my future goals to accomplish.
I have read more during the second semester of 2012 than in the last 5 years. I was trying to become a professional writer -Nevermind I have no idea whatsoever what that means exactly-. Somewhere I read the best source of inspiration was not found behind the closed doors of your house but in the world outside. I also read somewhere else that in order to avoid Alzheimer and all the brain related problems that comes with age you should follow a few easy rules. One of them was around the lines of stop focusing in oneself and socialize.
I decided I certainly want inspiration and I most certainly do not want Alzheimer.... and Christmas, Christmas time was here. Could I take the challenge? But of course. Dragon is always up for challenges! So I put the Scrooge Grinch coat aside, dressed the dwarves with Elves' suits, tied a jingling bell in my tail and even practiced the Ho-ho-ho smile. I sang carols for warming up. Practiced 2000 push-ups saying "Merry Christmas and Happy New Year". Yes, I was going to make the best Holiday dragon.
My equipment for this mission was at its best. The past doesn't matter. Now is the only thing that matters. You write your life each instant. You can be as happy as you choose to be. Mind controls the brain. Time for inspiration, time to open the heart, time for renovation.
Has it ever happened to you that you plan a perfect date, or a perfect meal or a perfect something and then something goes wrong and it starts a chain reaction, until all you have in your hands is a perfect mess? Christmas wasn't that bad, but after the 26th I was reminded over and over again of every single reason why I came to dread and hate this time of the year in the first place.
But hey! it's all about determination. When I get hit in the cheek, I put the other. The problem is when I get hit in the mouth, well... since I only have one, I think of putting something else, like dagger sharp teeth or claws. But it was Christmas, and I had written a beautiful post about never giving up and stuff. I had to stand to my dragon word or I would feel false.
I endured with my widest sneer, er... smile. I was so deeply focused on getting through this without pulling the "stealth master trick" that I didn't have time to make any resolutions or think about the year that was ending or on any New Year plans or expectations. I was living the now, INDEED. And just when I was feeling like this was enough for the next one hundred years, I tried to decompress by watching a movie: Real Steel.
Who doesn't get goosebumps at those great scenes of a fighting or boxing movie (be it Real Steel or Rocky IV) when the protagonist is all but broken but suddenly gets the strength needed to defeat the apparently invincible enemy? We get all excited and cheer for the champion and feel all inspired to prove our courage in memorable ways.
Have you ever felt your inner self, your essence, your very core is cracking down at certain tasks, challenges, missions you have undertaken? Have you felt you are losing the fight even when you have tried your best? I have, many times along my dragon life, in many arenas.
It's so tempting to drop the towel then. SO tempting. Mostly when we do have all the good reasons to do it; the fear, the pain, the anger, the defeat, the lack of answers and options, the odds against us. It seems the Higher Powers are speaking to us loud and clear: Step back, quit, just forget it.
This season didn't have the success I expected but I am still trying next year. I will not get down the ring. Why? Because the greatest victories are the result of the hardest fights. A great tenor is not applauded for clearing his throat. A great writer is not praised for writing "Dear Sirs,".
If you really want to get that glorious triumph that makes your skin crawl with goosebumps, you need to stand up and get your soul to fight when you think your heart cannot take anymore. It is far easier to watch a movie than to try that kind of heroism in your real life with your real aches and challenges -whatever they might be- but sparing the pain won't get you closer to your goals.
Today is the second day of 2013 and the only resolution I could come up with is: Stay in the Ring.