Sunday, April 9, 2017

On this, a balmy spring day

When Melissa proposed to me, the final time (the time I accepted), we chose the date for May, because I hate heat and wanted to have a cool, gorgeous, flowery outdoor wedding. May 19th rolled around and it was positively simmering. I put on the most perfect wedding dress, sweat through my hairspray and curls, and married the love of my life. On our honey moon, I threw my back out dragging our canoe through a low river in Northern Arkansas. That year, we had a drought so intense that the state was tapping private wells and we were all sweaty and gross for a while. While this is a feeling that is not unfamiliar in Missouri, we generally get a fairly nice spring. It didn't matter- I was in love, sweaty, and happy.

7 years later, separated from Melissa, we have another truly hot spring. There's symmetry in that, perhaps. I took grumpy old Missy, an old black Terrier+Pomeranian mix, and Mr. Man, my middle-aged chihuahua for a hike around Bear Creek and we were all panting by the time we got back to the truck. The sadness comes and goes. There are still so many things that make me happy (comics, my puppies, my family, my best friend and non-nesting partner Abbey, writing, naps, roller skating, hiking, canoeing, bad puns, etc., etc.) but I feel like this is almost vindictive heat, or bookender heat. This is the end of the shelf. Seven years of stories are contained between these heat waves. This collection of stories is complete.

Today I celebrated faux Easter with my brother, his fiance, the kids, my Aunt, and my mother. We dressed up and went to breakfast. I wore the skirt I wore to my first wedding in Iowa because it is my favorite spring skirt- a pattern that looks like pastel fireworks or chrysanthemums, my pearls from our Missouri wedding made by my maid of honor, and a ring Mel bought me in Eureka Springs. I wore them because they are beautiful things that stay with me, even though we've reached the end of the bookshelf. I have more bookshelves. I will love other stories. I will find other rings that fit me. But I will miss the life we had together. I will miss the dreams we built together, the adventures we had. I will miss how she would follow me around the house with her guitar, playing Heart. I will miss our road trips. I will miss the softness of her kiss, the feeling of her breath against my neck. I will miss her goulash. I will miss how joyful she was when she found a box of Pączki. And that's okay, I guess. 

Time to write. I promise I won't break up my main characters just because I'm sad. I almost did, but I won't. 

In the land of practical writing notes 
  1. Our writing workshop has jumped back to life! This has been a source of joy and inspiration to me and I hope all the amazing folks who have recently joined us!
  2. My novel is coming along. Word to the wise: do not buy a stack of comics right before an intense writing period. It will delay your writing. 
  3. Facebook is not good for productivity- which I feel is a lesson I never learn.
  4. Oh, I'm going to write another guest post for Shores of Night! Woot!