Tuesday, February 28, 2006

Finding my tribe

My parents had a lot of friends. I remember our small apartment being engulfed almost every weekend, run amok with my parents’ friends from Colombia. Being an immigrant is sharp edged chaos, harsh sounds in a language you don’t speak, elbows that jab you when you stand still in front of the subway, trying to read the map. So they guarded their friendships fiercely--the only other people who knew the exact smell of the frying fish that wafted through the seaspray, and the sounds of dancing feet softly pounding the packed sand during all night parties. These people were such a fact of my life growing up that I didn’t even know I had grown up without an extended family, since my parents were the only ones who had made the journey out of both of their families. They streamed in and out of our place, and when they weren’t there, we were in their tiny apartments, virtual replicas of ours, complete with the plastic covered sofas (yes we had one of those). The women banging pots and pans in the kitchen, shouting plot points about their favorite soaps over the noise; raucous laughter from the men in the living room, usually playing dominos; the kids swarming everywhere in between, tumbled together pulling on the host kid’s toys. Together, these people shared bits and pieces of knowledge gleaned from their occasional interactions with outsiders, hard-won, usually at the cost of some pride (and these people had pride like peacocks)...a useful English phrase heard and understood at the supermarket, a new factory that was lax about checking on “papers” (work permits). Every outing was a group outing, almost every weekend meal...creating a charmed circle of home and familiarity before the strain of the workaday world. In hindsight, perhaps the constant partying was wearisome on occasion; I remember tempers would occasional strain and snap, culminating in a lot of slammed doors and chasing after the injured party. But the noise and the drama was a small price to pay for the pleasure of knowing exactly where they belonged, for being ensconced in the warmth of their tribe.

I contrast that to my own life at the moment. Like my parents (and The Executive Geek’s as well), we left the cozy environs of home--the East Coast--and started hopscotching across the country, living in Austin, Chicago, and now California. When TEG and I got engaged, I told him I saw us “holding hands through life, living in all sorts of parts unknown.” I had no idea he would take me so literally.

It’s strange to think about how desperately I wanted such different things--to move, to travel, to leave the place where I grew up, and to be a part of a community where I could finally feel inspired and excited and pushed to create. But so far, we have both failed to find our tribe, living increasingly solitary lives. Now that I am a stay at home mother, I can go whole days without talking to another adult (and I include TEG, on days he travels). I wish I could fall back on a community of people, a web of conversations and references to an earlier me. But, no...that’s not exactly what I want. Unlike my parents and my inlaws, I don’t want to recreate the rhythms and voices of home...if I had wanted that, I would never left the East Coast. I'm not looking for people who share my ethnicity or my home language; instead, I want to find my true clan...people I can read with, and write with, and dream with. So I look online, and I peer into people’s faces at Starbucks (I live in a very suburban suburb, so Starbucks is it for coffee) and wonder if today will be the day I meet an emissary from the group I wish so badly to join. Hopefully I’ll do this soon, so that Madam can carry her own stories of a matrix of adults and children and art and laughter and parties and music and movement into her future, and not grow up alone.

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Monday, February 27, 2006


It’s been a couple of days since I had a chance to write here...and I have missed it. Ideas for entries float through my head when I have no access to a computer or even a pen...walking the mile with Madam to get her to sleep or breastfeeding or showering. And so I have had this antsy feeling all weekend, as though I’ve only been half awake, making up sentences to entertain myself at 3am and then realizing they would be forgotten by sun up. When I was younger, my habit of narrating everything as it was happening would drive me crazy, because it seemed like an impediment to actually fully experiencing it, in flow. Like I said, I was a nascent little Romantic. Little did I know that it would serve me well someday, keeping me awake as Madam and I greet the dawn (and pre-dawn, and the pre-pre-dawn) together. At least I got to bask in the brilliance without having to see it brought down with a thud by going on the page and leaving my brain. And for once, I even had an excuse to do so!

I don’t often write about Madam here, in part because we are a hermetically sealed little unit most of the day. The Executive Geek works from home, but he’s laboring heroically to save his struggling start up, so he’s not able to spend all that much time with her. And since we live on the other side of the country from both of our families (and I have no friends here yet), it’s basically just Madam and I all day long. So this place is my time to be in my own head, to remember my own thoughts...to remember that they still matter. It’s strange...I think most of my childless friends have pulled away in part because they assume they’ll be regaled with tales of prodigious poop and magical milestones, when actually I just want to talk about, oh, ANYTHING else. Just to reclaim some of that old mental land.

Take my average conversation with my mom lately. For the best effect, put on some loud Telemundo in the background and procede to translate this conversation into rapid-fire Spanish:


Me: Mami, hi! How are you?

Mom: How’s Anjali?

Me: Fine, she just ate. So did you hear about...

Mom: What did she eat?

Me: Um...peas and brown rice. So what about that...

Mom: Did she eat it all?

Me: Uh, yeah...so anyway...

Mom: You know you have to put her on the floor for play everyday, right? I mean...she’s at the age...(I’ll spare you the long, drawn out lecture I hear every. single. day.)

Mom: Well, I have to go...tell her I love and adore her (insert high pitched baby talk and kissy sounds here).

I adore that my mother adores Madam, and I don’t begrudge her joy in being a grandmother--Madam is the only one of her grandchildren she actually saw at the moment of birth, so she claims they have a special bond. Madam would probably agree, considering the gleeful smiles that erupt around my mom. But...it’s like Mami thinks that motherhood should subsume all of my other selves, and well...it doesn’t. That fact alone makes me feel a wee bit freakish compared to other mothers, who mention how “every thought has changed since the baby.” I’m still basically me-an expanded, remixed version of the old standard, but you can recognize the melody. And I want it to stay that way.

Not that mommyhood hasn’t affected me. Watching Madam is such an education. She’s such an opinionated little person--knows exactly what she wants and woe to the person who tries to convince her otherwise. I crave that kind of assurance in my own life...albeit with fewer yelps of rage. No obstacle can hinder her for long, and when she’s working on a new skill, it consumes her every waking and even sleeping (sadly for me) moment. Now it’s “learning to crawl.” Everything is connected to the Glory and the Dream of Crawling--any toy is quickly sized up as a help or hindrance to this wished-for state, and is dealt with accordingly. I wish she wouldn’t wake herself up (and me) by going on all fours in her sleep and rocking back and forth in a vain attempt at locomotion, but secretly I think it’s kind of cool that she’s such a tenacious babe.

When she gets like that, I always remember all of the religious injunctions to “be as a child”, “and a little child shall lead them” and all that. I used to think it was about being innocent and yielding to Higher Will and all that kind of maudlin, overly-idealizing-childhood stuff...but now I think it’s about being fiercely committed to a desire. Being willing to chew on it, yank on it, push it, wake up practicing it, until you can finally crawl your way to fulfillment.

They say (you know, the They who speak on these things) what you concentrate on expands. I see it happening everyday with Madam, and hopefully I’ll start waking up with fingers tapping on the comforter myself soon.

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Thursday, February 23, 2006

An epiphany, of sorts

For someone who thinks about writing and talks about writing and bemoans her lack of writing, I realized today that I do precious little fictional reading. Oh, sure, I read the odd novel here and there, and I read a fair amount of them in high school, but somewhere along the way, nonfiction became my reading material of choice. A glance at my bookshelves reveals: career counseling, psychology, mythology, spirituality, and how-to-write books, but very few novels. I couldn't even come up with more than twenty novels I could classify as "favorites" (whereas I had almost fifty nonfiction books on the same list)!
Now, why is this important? Because how will I ever learn to write a decent novel (or any novel) if I don't read them? It's not just that I don't have time...I make time to read my favorite blogs and I'm also reading a new (you guessed it) spirituality book, the Power of Intention. I sat and nursed my mocha for a while (while my Madam was occupied watching the cars go by...one of the advantages of living in the Land of Sunshine is having a lot of enviable weather), trying to sit with the obvious conclusion. Maybe it's just not in me to write a novel...maybe it's just a goal I had a long time ago, and I keep it around because it feels good, noble even, to have it around. Maybe my true love is nonfiction, and I just need to face that. Ugh, I can feel my insides twisting away from that idea. But is that because it's wrong, or because it's all-too-right? Or maybe it's another symptom of my inability to read like a writer...maybe reading novels just feels like too much pressure.

Or maybe I am overthinking this. I tend to do that. I think I need to take the advice of this Amazon reviewer who mentioned wanting to "follow her lightness and desire." I actually stopped short when I read that, because I do have a tendency of concentrating on the strum und drang of writing, to the point where I don't think I have EVER used the words "lightness and desire" with regards to my own work practice. Maybe thinking about it that way once and a while will remind me that for some people, art is actually, genuinely, a pleasure.

And maybe my dearth of novel reading just means that I, you know, need to read more novels. I may need to add another nap to Madam's schedule (ha! indulging in some wishful thinking there) but I'm willing to make that sacrifice...I mean, indulge that desire. Hmmm...sounds sexier already.

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Wednesday, February 22, 2006

This and that

And the day came when the risk it took to remain tightly closed in a bud was more painful than the risk it took to bloom. --Anais Nin

I started this blog, in large part, because I wanted to give myself an excuse to write something meant to be consumed by other people. I’m incredibly shy about sharing my writing...so I end up sitting on it, with no feedback and feeling stuck. I thought and thought (and thought, but two repetitions should give you the idea) about starting a blog precisely because I was not sure if I wanted to put myself out there like that. What would I say? Would anyone care? In my negative heart of hearts (mine is black and vaguely burned, a bit like the house of blues logo), I thought “Of course I have nothing to say...and even if I did, no one would care.”

Surprisingly, this whole process has opened up a desire in me to SAY something, to have people read me and comment. For the first time, I want my writing to be a part of a conversation that doesn’t beginning and end with me. So to say I was thrilled with my first set of comments doesn’t begin to describe it...it’s like I sent out my little message in the bottle and it actually reached shore! So, thanks for your generosity, YummyTeece.

Of course, in my positive heart of hearts (with little wings, natch; I’m still working on my visual iconography...hence the lack of images in my blog so far), I thought I would put up perfectly polished mini-essays of such profound brilliance that I’d instantly find myself enmeshed in a creative community—a salon. But my thoughts aren’t quite that neat yet...there’s a mess without (my poor apartment!) and a mess within. I need to learn to create within the chaos. So I’ll probably cycle around thoughts and themes as needed, and probably contradict myself a good deal.

I’m still searching to find my voice...nothing quite feels organic yet. This is a problem in daily life, as well, which often leads me to say nothing at all for fear of saying it wrong. This is why my novel lies unedited and unfinished, despite the fact that I think about it almost everyday. This is why I don’t know a soul in The Golden State yet, in spite of having lived here a year.

Well, I’m through with this silence. It’s time to create and play and be somebody. I’m planning to use this blog as a laboratory, searching for the right words. Or any words. I’m sure I’ll end up imitating lots of writers that I admire. If I do...remember what they say about imitation and thanks for the inspiration. If I sound a bit like the verbal equivalent of a child wobbling unsteadily in her mother’s heels...well, that’s OK too. After all, I did finally learn to walk in my own high heels.

Hopefully this hodge podge will lead me to myself.

Because I am finding that this tight old bud doesn’t fit me anymore.

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Sunday, February 19, 2006

Reading as a writer

I've wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember. I’ve wanted to not be a writer for as long as I can remember. Unfortunately, the latter has often won out.

My parents were never big readers, but they believed in the holy grail of education enough to sign me up for a children’s bookclub. Every month I would receive three new titles.

I think I lived each month for the certainty that one day (always a different one, frustrating but excitingly anticipatory as well) I would get a package in the mail (actually addressed to ME) that would contain my prized three books. My parents never took me to the library at that age, and I was not enrolled in a preschool. So those books were often the ONLY books I had, and were all the more precious for it, especially since by this time the three books from LAST month had been chewed on, read, reread, pondered and used as plot fodder for my Barbies’ adventures.

As I got older, my Middle Sister (my punkish mentor), as much as lover of books as I was, initiated me into the tradition of going to the library every week. Every Monday and Thursday, we’d run across the boulevard that separated us from the adjoining town--it had a lot of whirring traffic all day long--and pass the endless rows of houses, attached wall to wall to wall. I always pulled ahead at this point, wanting to hurry up and get to what I considered the pretty part of town. Pretty because it had wide sidewalks, trees planted in the middle of the road as dividers, and houses with stoops instead of mere fenced-in concrete yards like mine. Once we got there, I’d wait for my sister to catch up so we could talk about all of the books we would take out once we got there. The children’s library had a five book limit, so I always planned my haul in advance. Were there any books I could read while waiting for Middle Sister to finish her search? How should I weigh a book I loved and really wanted to read again compared to a tantalizing new title? Should I stick to my subjects (fairy tales, myths, books about dogs, Peanuts cartoons) or branch out into the exciting young adult section, with its shiny-covered novels with pretty teenagers on the cover?

I was such a voracious reader that a sympathetic librarian started allowing me to check out books from the adult section of the library about 3 years before I was old enough. This is where I found Bookish Nirvana--shelves practically to the ceiling, all covered in magical book dust, the kind that stuck to your fingers like dry mist when you pulled out a book too tightly wedged in the shelf. Hardcover books with tiny little threads pulled from the top of the scratchy binding. White lights set so dim that they looked beamed from Mars. And best of all...no limit on how many books you could take out! Heaven, Nirvana, the Elysian Fields for a greedy reader girl.

For me, all of these books were written by some sort of divine guidance, by virtue of being in book form at all. My ideas of inspiration and creativity at that time were very hazy and freeform...I believed, like the nascent little Romantic I was, that books were born fully formed, like Athena from Zeus’s head. Thus, I simply devoured them, with no thought of technique or craft or anything but sheer joy in what other people could do and I could not.

The flip side of that, however, was a persistent feeling that I was reading with one eye closed, because while I could appreciate the skill and the story, a horrible little voice inside me would taunt me as I read, reminding me that I could never hope to aspire to be like these writers, these Authors who were everything I was not--worldly, sophisticated, witty, brilliant. I would soothe myself by remembering my age--I had YEARS to grow up into this! To become a full fledged Author.

Too bad those ideas have only gained in strength as I have grown older. Even now that I am aware of it, I still catch myself skimming exceptionally beautiful patches of novels, as though I can’t face my own inadequacies head on. So when how-to books tell me to “read like a writer”, I have no idea how to do that. Because if I really concentrate, then I’ll know for sure that my horrible little voice was right all those years ago. I mean, here I am...32, longing for something I can’t quite commit to, or quite let go of. How to compete with the likes of John Updike and Toni Morrison and Shakespeare (yes, even the Bard gets dragged into my neurosis) when everything inside tells me they are still everything I am not-the opposite of me.

But now I have a new ally in my quest--the open face of my Madam. How can I tell her to persevere and chase her dreams when I have never had the courage to do it myself? Maybe being a good mother to her means being a better mother to myself than I have been all of these years.

So I force myself to slow down, read and appreciate every beautiful word, and try to remember the dusty bookshelves, and the sympathetic librarian. Work to stay with the longing born while waiting for that box of books when I was five. Try to read for craft, for sentence structure, for plot and characterization skills. And I try to tell myself that there IS room in the world for an author who is not an Author. Isn’t there?

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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Old writing: Talking to myself out loud

(Once upon a time, a girl wanted to start a weblog...and she even wrote some entries. But she never posted them. Well...this is one of the ones I found, and it's still relevant to my life, alas, so here it is.)

Last night, while I fought an epic battle with a massive head cold (the mucus managed to flow like lava AND encase my head in rubber cement), I turned on my old friend, VH1, in an attempt to distract myself from my distressing lack of oxygen. Immediately, I got caught up in my favorite kind of scheudenfreude, Child Star Babylon. I watched as these former stars smiled wryly and winced as a nickel-plated parade of their past floated by. They shared tales that have become as familiar as the Creation myth for diehards fans of the genre-the Ambitious Rise, the Pinnacle of Fame, the Allure of Fast-Living, the Fade into Obscurity.

Why are these shows so popular, and more importantly (well, to me), why do I love them so? Perhaps it was the lack of restorative breathing, but for once, I stayed with the question instead of moving on to the next shiny object. Finally, I realized it is the packaging that is so appealing to me...because these shows allow me to experience risk, passion, achievement...without my ever having to leave my bed or even change the channel! These shows are a recipe for the status quo...why try ANYTHING new? We’ve seen how it will end...a brief rise to the top (because, of course, we’d ALL make it), followed by a long, torturous, embarrassing fall from grace that will live on in soundbites and VH1 and E! forever and ever, amen. Why leave the house, get back to that screenplay, go for that audition? Why do anything except sit and practice our Headshake of Superiority as we watch these fools who actually chose to try something without getting it vetted by society’s Superego?

So, reluctantly, I find that if I ever want to accomplish anything, ever, I need to turn my back on my beloved celeb reality shows and turn it back to me (is that physically possible? No matter, it's figurative, after all). Otherwise, I’ll be stuck forever pre-Act One: Waiting for the Curtain to Rise.


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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

The shadownet

I don’t know if it’s because I’m a little sister, or an unfortunately cautious person, but I always seem to get into something just as it’s coming to an end. When I was younger, all I wanted was to be a hippie, like the ones in Hair, one of my favorite movies growing up. Unfortunately, it was the 80s. Not that I didn’t see the possibility of being cool even in the 80s. My sister would go off to Danceteria and wear safety pins in her ears and generally be as punk as she could get away and still go to church with us on Sunday. But...I was too young for that as well (thought wearing safety pins to class made me a VERY cool fifth grader, thanks to that same sister).

This is my roundabout way to noticing that last week seems to have brought out the dark side of the sunny little corner of the web I usually inhabit. I feel a little like an exuberant kid with my new toy blog, getting to the playground just as Mary Ann and Jennifer had a fight over a Barbie and everyone took sides and then all left in a snit. Or something. Maybe, again, I got here too late.

I think part of the difficulty stems from the false intimacy that these sites can engender in their readers. I started reading blogs back when I was at Aimless but Cool Job--to me, they satisfied the same need soap operas did for a time, i.e. an intimate look at someone else’s life and thoughts. People routinely post pictures of their family, deep dark secrets, and the ever-popular stories about poop. You pick the people you “follow”, just like on a soap opera, and then you cheer with them at the conclusion of a journey or commiserate over a failure. But that’s where the similarity ends, because unlike with a television show, you can actually talk to these people--develop a relationship with the “star”. Like it or not, you start to feel emotionally involved, and that can lead to feeling, if not like friends, then at least “friendly”. And so you start to feel like you can demand things from them...why aren’t they responding to your comments anymore? Or replying to your blog? You have been a faithful fan...where is your payoff? It’s not enough to get entertainment from the site...now it has to validate you in some way as well.

In Jungian psychology, the shadow represents the aspects of your persona that you have deemed unacceptable, for some reason, so you foist them onto the outside world. So instead of admitting that you feel unpopular or “less than”, or are jealous of those bloggers who have huge followings, you attack them for being too...what? Confident, popular, eloquent, lucky? The shadow knows.

Jealousy can be a wonderful, laser pinpoint tool to discover what it is you really want, and really need...as long as you face up to it. A lot of the time, I have a hard time admitting to myself that I actually really want something--perhaps from a fear that it will forever be out of my reach. But persistent jealousy acts as an insidious little acid voice inside forcing me to look at what I am doing, or not doing, with what I know. A willful blindness to oneself is like being divorced from your intuition. You stumble along down one rotted path after another.

But it’s not all gloom. We also tend to stuff positive aspects of ourselves in the shadow...traits we either don’t REALLY believe we possess, or those that scare us because they seem to demand a change in our whole lives. But again, we have to accept it, and again, it’s the starkness of our jealousy that can show us the way. To loosely paraphrase Emerson, it’s as though our own rejected qualities come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.

So...own the fact that you want more attention and support from the internets (or any, ahem). Own that you’d love to have enough of a belief in your abilities to call yourself “Gorgeous and Divine” and REALLY mean it. Own that you care enough about your blog, your writing, your art, your work, or your life to wish you could rise to a level of brilliance, but are afraid of the work involved, or afraid that at the end of that work, you'll be left with the knowledge that it wasn't enough. Because the messy, occasionally malodorous effects of wanting more and being angry at those who seemingly possess it? That is the open stuff of life and connection. But the closed-eyed, closed-minded fist of self-righteousness? Not so much.


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Sunday, February 12, 2006

Feel so damn unpretty

I started this blog with lofty intentions, to inspire, find my writing voice, push myself past my fear of exposure. But right now, all I want to talk about is how ugly I feel, inside and out.

Oh, dear reader (I've decided to be optimistic and assume I WILL have readers someday...), I am feeling more unattractive now than I ever have before. And yes, that includes when I was pregnant.

Lately, all you have to do to get a sense of how I am looking and feeling is to take a glance at my feet. They look like they belong to a Gorgon who is letting herself go. Scaly, gnarly nails faintly yellowed with...I shudder to think with what. My poor toes look beaten down by life, every line brought into sharp relief by my sudden abundance of dry skin.

I know, I know...this happens to everyone, eventually. But that doesn't make it any more palatable.

My mother would say that I am allowing myself to be a "quedada"...a woman left behind. Not that I ever considered myself a beauty queen but I always felt at presentable, and I never lacked for admiration, my own or that of gentlemen friends (OK, where did that Victorian Maiden come from?). But having the baby changed all that. Or rather, having the baby then ignoring myself for the last seven months has changed all that.

A friend of mine once said that if women stopped obsessing about romance and their appearance, they could probably cure cancer in a few weeks. I don't doubt it, and the idea of being beautiful has never been a priority for me. I grew up with a beautiful mother, whose motto was always "Beauty must suffer pain." Well, the kind of beauty she meant (that of long hair and stiletto heels and makeup) always seemed like a silly reason to suffer to me. Why spend so much money and fuss on myself when I could always buy another book, or go out and do something? But now I find myself more conscious of the lack of beauty. I always have a bit of a shock when I look in the mirror, especially if I am holding Madam Bunny at the same time. Her luminous skin (I know all babies are beautiful, but indulge a proud Mama, will you?), her rosy cheeks and full lips and bright, inquisitive eyes smile into the mirror and you can't help but sigh in satisfaction. Until you see me, in all of my rat nest headed, undereye circled, pimpled glory. I don't even look related to the radiant creature who is supposedly my daughter. I am just so uncomfortable in my own skin--none of my clothes fit well and I can't seem to find clothes that do. Things sag and bunch up that used to fit smoothly once (both clothes and skin, alas). Even my teeth look worn out.

What makes it worse is that I feel like every other Mama in the world has it totally together. I see them everywhere in my little suburb--smooth shiny hair, coordinated clothes without pureed sweet potato on them, even jewelry. Meanwhile, I'm schlumping around in my ill fitting attire, rocking the momtail (my daughter LOVES to pull hair) because my hair hasn't been cut since I was pregnant, no jewelry (did I mention she also likes to pull? Hard?). It's enough to make me break out into a rousing chorus of "I feel ugly."

Maybe it's just time for me to learn how to handle these basic maintanence tasks on my own. It was always easier for me to head on out to a salon or one of those wonderful little Korean nail places, and tell myself that I was using my mental powers for loftier endeavors. But it's actually just that I'm pretty bad with the girly stuff (aka the stuff my Mami kept trying to teach me). But I'm finally working on it...I just bought foot exfoliant (admitting to myself that my next pedicure will probably be in a few long months)...so I'm rebuilding myself from the ground up, literally. I think I need to start with the ogre in the mirror before I have the energy to tackle my sterile apartment and its utter lack of personality, unless you count being festooned in ugly baby's primary color plastic as a personality. And I'm all about the comforting lie, but even I can't convince myself of that one. Beauty might need to suffer pain, but it's nothing compared to the pain of seeing yuckiness everywhere you look.


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Saturday, February 11, 2006

In which our heroine introduces herself.

Um, hi, interwebs. I finally did it. After many sleepless nights wondering whether or not to start a blog, here I am.

Ok, so maybe some of those sleepless nights involved pacing my small apartment with my equally sleepless baby, but whatever. The point is...this is something I have wanted to do for a long time. Why? Because since I found out I was pregnant...hell, ever since my time working at Cool but Aimless Job, I have counted on blogs to entertain me, to make me think, and to provide a semblance of community in my (somewhat) lonely life. And now that I am a SAHM (ah, dreaded acronym!), I have lots of Mind but very little place to put it. And that one handed typing can certainly get, well...slow. And frustrating. Especially when (it never fails) Madam Bunny (my seven month old daughter) wakes up and demands uninterrupted Mommy time. Which is becoming increasingly difficult to give her, because after the Year of Very Little Thinking (aka most of my pregnancy and Madam Bunny's last six months or so), I find myself returning to myself, which means all of those old longings to write, to think, to dream, and actually to become something are coming back. And that makes me feel like a divided mother, because even though I am thrilled to be able to see my daughter grow and develop everyday, I also miss my old life, with its hours of free time to spend noodling around in bookstores, cafes, and buried in the pages of a book.

So, yes, this is another Mommy Blog, with a dash of "What the hell should I do with my life?" and a soupcon of "So many things are cool, and I need a place to ponder all of them" and even a smidgen of "yes, I am an attention whore, and I need validation in order to fight my fears and keep writing."

As for all of those people who thought about that other meaning of "one hand typing"--shame on you! And also, hee. I did the same thing.

I feel like I should throw my hat in the air or something like Mary Richards. Hurray! I have arrived.

More later.


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