On Twitter yesterday I found out that @WanderingWilbo had posted a tweet about me. He said he was having an existential crisis about my upcoming nuptials. Ha! Turns out he wrote a whole blog about it. Read it HERE. His existential crisis is only echoing my own. I think I’ve been struggling with this all summer long. I mean, who am I anymore? Do I need to hold a skull and just get this monologue out of my system?
I took great comfort in being Blunder Woman for a time. I liked being her. She was fun; and she was me. Truly me. I was single again, out of the closet with my romantic writing, and totally embraced my awkwardness, even when I fell and broke my foot, even when I had bad dates followed by even worse relationship(s). (Two dates is a relationship, right?)
But I’m not single anymore. Nope. Me and Kealoha are walking down the aisle. (He’ll walk; I’ll shimmy.) So, who the hell am I if I’m not desperate and nerdy? If I'm not Blunder Woman, then am I no longer funny or relatable, or god help me, quirky?Something very strange has been happening to me, and I hesitate to even say the words. Over these last two years…I’ve grown up. Really. Damnation! But it's true.
It started innocently enough. First, I had to get tough enough to believe I could make it on my own and raise my two kids with kindness and love. Then I had to suck it up and work really hard at earning an income through teaching and narrating. Then I had to pump iron and be all Rocky Balboa when it came to my writing and not give up. And every time I fell over or broke a bone or cried on my kitchen floor while my sister said she didn’t know how things could get any better, but maybe they couldn’t get worse…all through that, I’d do what the song says. I’d pick myself up, brush myself off, and start all over again.
At nearly forty, I’m starting all over again with Kealoha by my side. Gone are my thoroughly awkward days. I have confidence now. I believe in my writing and in myself. And I have the comfort of loving someone who loves me for my quirks and not in spite of them.
But if I’m not writing about my anxiety and heartbreak, what do I write about?
I’ll tell you what…and it’s taken me all summer to figure this out…I may not BE Blunder Woman anymore, but I can still channel her. And I may be getting married, but I can still remember every painful moment of being alone. And I may be happy, but inside, there are characters who still want their story told. (And Kealoha assures me I'm still quirky. I think my friends would agree.)
Honestly, I didn’t even think anyone was following my story. I’d sort of given up on the whole quirky writer thing. Then something else strange started happening. In the last couple of months, I’ve heard from several readers and many friends who’ve told me they are reading my stuff. They read my work and laugh or just remember it, and I can’t tell you what that means to me. I thought I was writing to an empty auditorium and every day it’s like I get to see someone else’s face who’s been sitting in the seats listening to me go on and on. I just can't get over that. I'm not talking to an empty void. There are people out there! PEOPLE!!! (Yay.)
I don’t know what stories I’m going to tell or what happens in my future, but I can tell you that I’m still, at heart, awkward and nerdy, even if it’s covered with a sheen of confidence.
I may not know exactly who this new woman is that I’m becoming, but maybe there’s something wonderful in that. I guess I’ll just have to turn the page to find out.
Hokey. But true.
In short, this summer I almost gave up (for the hundredth time), but I’m back. I’m writing again. I can figure out how to be happy and still be a writer. And I hope you’ll continue to read my work and see how it’s all evolving.