Up until this very moment, I haven’t been short of an idea of what to write for Blogtober. And really, I am still not short of any ideas. I have a list of over 20 things I could write about. But I don’t feel like writing about any of those things. I felt like writing about something else tonight. And now I can’t.
I was really excited to write about what I had planned tonight. But, for reasons outside of my control, reasons I absolutely must respect, I cannot write that story tonight. And looking at my list of blog ideas, I couldn’t just pick another one. For me, it simply doesn’t work like that. You see, the reason the list is so long is because each day new ideas pop into my head, and often something hits me on the day and simply must be shared. And tonight, what came to me, what was bursting to be written, cannot.
Explaining my dilemma to my son, he asked ‘Do you have writer’s block?’ And in that very moment I realised, that was what tonight’s post was to be about. Writer’s block.
And this is what Blogtober is all about. Throwing me into unfamiliar situations. Seeing how I respond. Stretching me as a writer. Showing me, who I am. What kind of writer I am. Challenging me. Surprising me. And tonight the lesson was about control and creativity. How you redirect your creative energies when you are locked in, to a set path. A destination. And then it has to change. How you remain true to yourself. How to let go. How to accept you are not in control. And that it does not matter. How to pause in your disappointment, step away from yourself to see that perhaps the actual moment and what you are experiencing, right this minute, is what you should write about. And here we are. Hello.
I imagine I am not the first to experience this. I imagine I won’t be the last. I also know that this will not be the last time for me to go through this. And it is not just about writing. It is about any creative venture. And it is about the most important creative venture of all. It is about life.
So often we have a set course in life. The coordinates are locked in. All the plans set in place. What could go wrong? And then, we hit an metaphorical iceberg. It is a catastrophe of Titanic proportions. The bottom falls out. And we sink. Or perhaps we swim. Survive. Start again. Start over. Do something different. Change direction. For some, there is denial of the iceberg and the enormous hole in the life plan. They bandage it up as best as they can. Plug the leaks until it is inevitable. And they go under, swallowing water as they go. Others go down like the captain of the ship. Brave. Willing. But again, thinking there is no option but to go under. And then, there are those who swim their hearts out to find dry ground, a place of refuge, a new beginning. They have a willingness to start over.
And that is how we got here tonight. To this very point. To this very moment. In the face of disappointment. In the face of things out of my control, I found a willingness to start over. To let go. To be open to whatever arises. To celebrate the surprise of it all. To let it be, whatever it was going to be. To give in to the moment. To let it be what it had to be. And my sweet reward was to discover a poem I had not known before. To write something I did not know was inside me. To understand a little deeper. To share, simply, that tonight my nest has been turned up by the plough.
‘The best-laid plans of mice and men / Go oft awry’ Adapted from To a Mouse, Robert Burns, 1785