Friday, June 26, 2009

Letting the Words Lead Me

I am so backwards. I've been sitting here for the past five minutes trying to think of a title to sum up this day, and it occured to me how ridiculous that is. Why can I never let things be what they are and tell their own story?

I'll tell you why. Because I'm a writer, but I'm not just a writer, I'm also a control freak. Its an inherent need in me to control the direction of my life, my work, my words. I was in a writing class once with a group of talented writers of all ages, but one man, a little older than the rest of us, had that quiet sort of genius that doesn't strike you; instead, it sneaks up on you like a tap on the back. Part of the class requirement was peer critique. On the day it was my turn to be critiqued, I was eager to hear his take on my work. He said all the usual things. Good command of language, interesting juxtapositions, etc. But, then he said something that I didn't quite understand at the time. He said (ok, I'm paraphrasing, but you know), "You can tell this writer knows where she wants to go before she even begins. I would love to see what would happen if she just let the words lead her."

I think at the time I was annoyed, but I realize now that he was exactly spot-on. I tend to be one of those people you look at and think, "Wow, she's really got it together." And, I do. Until life gets messy, and then, my smooth exterior crumbles and I scramble to keep the pieces of my world in order. When, in fact, I know that order is just cleverly crafted illusion anyway.

Anywho, all that is to say, today was a series of unfortunate events. At the office, our software quit working, so I came home to use my own software because we had deadlines, only to discover my internet wasn't working. So, while I could complete the task, I couldn't deliver it. It was a maddening appearance of Murphy's law, and I wasn't appreciating the humor. I found myself snacking on pretzels to "get control." Finally, things worked out, as they inevitably will, and I pulled myself together to go meet a friend for coffee. And, there my story changes (as it also inevitably will).

What began as a horrible day, turned into a wonderful and unexpected evening. I met my friend around 4pm. We grabbed iced coffees and a couple comfy chairs to sink into. I also treated myself to a riced krispie treat. (Forgot to picture - sorry.) We covered the gamut of topics. Politics, racism, travel, careers, eating disorders (speaking of control), and so on. What felt like 20 minutes later, I checked my phone and nearly felt out of my chair to see FOUR HOURS had passed without either of us giving a thought to the time. We said our hurried goodbyes and went our separate ways. Walking to my car, I realized how rare an occurance it is in my life to sit with a friend without any sense of urgency to be somewhere else, to simply get lost in the conversation, to actually relax and let the "words lead me." (Yes, I'll admit. I kinda knew where I was going with that.)

Want to know something ironic? This morning, I was thinking that I wanted to write a blog about the affects of stress on your health and suggestions on how to manage it... I guess I just did that. :) Funny how that works.

Now, without further ado, I give you my food...

AM Snack: Starbucks and Pretzels
Lunch: Ginormous Salad with Almond Butter and Jelly toast
PM Snack: Organic Vanilla Yogurt, Raspberries and a PB Kashi Bar Crumbles
Dinner: BBQ Asian Chicken mixed with some Broccoli Slaw,
Served over a Bed of Greens with a Side of Grapes

Well, goodnight, my sweets. I'm going to go spend some time with the hubby I've been neglecting as of late.

P.S. My girl Charlene wrote a good blog about Protein today. Check it out.



  1. Aw, don't worry. Things aren't always as bad as they seem... And time does fly when you're with friends, doesn't it? :D I love pretzels too by the way. They're my favorite snack. i think I could live on them. Maybe. If I had peaches as well. :)

  2. I love having a good time with friends (:

  3. I have been trying to make my own PB "Kashi" bars...I'll give you the recipe when they turn out!
    I am amazed at the stress of your day that you were thinking "health" I am mostly thinking "wine"

  4. I think sometimes we all get too caught up in our schedules. The things we want to do ultimately become obligations because they are planned ahead of time. I feel like this is something us females are mostly guilty of, while guys tend to be more laid back and have the "go with the flow" attitude. Lucky them :)

    The thing is, being over planned is a drain because it takes the spontaneity and pleasure out of the simple things in life--such as an afternoon w/ a friend conversing over coffee. Had you been thinking in the back of your head about the other 20 things you should be doing or you HAVE to do afterwards, you wouldn't have been able to enjoy yourself in that moment.

    My therapist reminded me of that yesterday and accused me rightfully of worrying too much about what's going to happen next that I never appreciate what's going on right in front of me. There will always be something to worry about next if we allow it... so for me that just means stopping to smell the roses once and while.

  5. P.S. Can I borrow that Buddah book? :)

  6. I'm glad you were able to slow down a bit and just enjoy the time with your friend.

  7. We are so sisters. Control freaks much? I love you and miss you and would love to hang at the coffee shop with you for 4 hours. Gotta start my blog:)

  8. I missed this post yesterday...

    I am always amazed how much stress has an impact on EVERY aspect of my life- from sleeping to eating to thinking. And also how much of an impact some quality friends can do to alleviate stress...even if we don't discuss deep and meaningful things and get to the 'root' of what's going on, just being in good company and having fun works wonders.

    Hope today is better for you :)


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