For the past two weeks I’ve kind of let my two blogs (remember I have a blog for reviews too) go. Nothing is wrong. I’m not dead, just busy.
I’ve really tried to focus on writing for online sites, pitching articles etc. Still most posts I write in advance. Except for timely things like holidays or trips or family visits, most posts are actually written six weeks in advance. This gives me a nice reserve in case I get busy or things get crazy or whatever. And I still have that reserve actually (currently I have six posts in reserve, but two I’m holding because I’m pitching similar article ideas on a few sites, the other four are still good-to-go though) but I’ve just been too busy to even bother posting them. Which you have to admit is pretty busy.
I already blogged about taking a step back but I didn’t actually intend to take off for two weeks – I figured a step back was one post per week. It’s just… nuts. That’s what this month has been. Absolute chaos meets manic sixteen-hour days of amazing productivity meets a little emotional turmoil where nothing gets done.
Here has been my month so far:
June 1-8: Family came out to visit, lots of activities including mountain getaways, thrill-parks and swim meets were had.
June 9-11: First essay accepted for publication, sent out several article pitches, got a lot done.
June 12: Orlando happened. Really do I need to say anything else? Orlando happened. This touched me in such a deeply personal way. As a gay person who has been out for more than two decades and faced so much homophobia and anti-gay violence it’s ridiculous, to fellow human, to a friend who has had to comfort his friends who knew some of the victims. Sorrow, shock – utter devastation pretty much summed me up for days. I wrote about it, trying to make sense of it, before I felt any anger and the only thing I felt was my heart breaking alongside others in my community. The piece I wrote tied in homophobia, misogyny, gun violence and gun sense with personal experiences braided in with facts and statistics.
June 13-16: Shopped my Orlando article/essay out to a few publications/media platforms. It felt important. And so few LGBTQ voices were being heard at that point. Most of the voices came from allies. Allies are great but they cannot feel this the same way we do. No one owns grief, but our community needed to be heard above our supporters. The Huffington Post picked it up and it was published the following day.
June 17: Orlando essay was published and the reactions were strong. Hundreds of people reached out to me, “friended” me or “followed” me. People left comments and shared the piece widely. The few I was expecting a potentially negative reaction from only had good things to say. But I also had a negative reaction from an unexpected source which colored the next week a dismal gray. (You can read the article here.)
June 18-23: People keep continued to share, like, comment and reach out about my piece. I post my last blog on June 19, discussing why I felt compelled to write about Orlando. I go between periods of furious writing and no writing because I am furious. Orlando made me realize I can no longer tolerate tolerance from those who should be accepting. Because those views and attitudes are the same as those that contributed to this horrific and tragic event. And it hurts, deliberate or not – not accepting gay people is a choice. People should stop making it. Tensions run high at home, though not really directed at each other – just general hurt and disappointment and “where do we go from here”.
June 24-June 29: More writing and more pitching. And more furious days of neither. It’s like an ABAB kind of thing.
June 30-Present: Just blocked. I am trying to unblock myself and maybe in the next few days I’ll be successful. Until then I’m catching up on work, dog-sitting (which my cat hates so it’s like a four-legger warzone at the moment) and looking at possible outlets to submit/pitch existing pieces to.
Oh and I also broke my finger, which has been a thing. I had to get a second opinion because the first doctor I saw I thought was an arrogant prick who didn’t listen or know what he was talking about. Luckily, having brittle bone disease, I know enough and I trust my instincts. After conferring with two other physicians who both agree with each other, my gut was right. Had I listened to doc #1 I would have messed up my finger big-time. He missed a fracture, indicated a current fracture on an old break and gave me instructions that would have affected future use of my fingers. It’s all right now, but obviously this also colored three weeks of this month (injury, quack doctor, other two doctors so it wasn’t a tie about what was what).
I know it doesn’t seem like much, but the fast-pace of pitching and reporting crap along with existing deadlines and clients along with the emotional toll of the last three weeks – it’s actually been a lot. More than when we went to LA or Florida a few months before. But it’s one of those things you just have to let be. I am. And hopefully it works out, but that’s not on me. And while my anger is justified (not just in this specific incident but also about Orlando, discrimination, recent politics, basically my grief has only incited my inability to let things go or look the other way) I am trying to get it in check so it does not rule me or my actions. But so help me, I feel my mouth is still a little trigger-happy so I just hope for a lack of stupidity, homophobia or discrimination (not necessarily anti-LGBT stuff, working on a few disability issues too and I just can’t believe some people or institutions, it makes me physically ill) because I won’t hold back, regardless of intention or who it is coming from.
So I’m still here, and I am still committed to this blog, and hope to post something once or twice a week. I’m just busy. And getting things done. And not getting things done. And grieving. And angry. And sad, disappointed, motivated, and determined. But that’s life, right?