How a Full Plate Leads to Writer’s Block

I’ve written so little lately my fingers are rusty with disuse. I sit and stare at the blinking cursor as my mind swirls with half-formed thoughts refusing to gel together in any semblance of order or coherent blog post.

I have so much to say, yet I don’t know how to say it.

It’s my fault too.

I may have something to do with 90% of my “free” time being sucked away for the giant of task of calculating What Kindergarten Option Do I Send the Tackler To Next Year and How Do We Spend the Summer?Kindergarten isn't what I remember.

The discussion and comments from my post Do You Need a Degree to Be a Good Teacher were amazing. Since then I’ve been on a quest to research in detail all of the options out there.

Because if I homeschool, I want my husband on board and he is a “Prove it with the facts” kind of guy.

I’ve made phone calls. Toured schools. Googled.

A deadline for one of the options is this week, forcing my normal procrastinating hand.

Who knew figuring out kindergarten could be so complicated?

We have public school, charter (public) school, private kindergarten (full or half day), and homeschooling to choose from.

Meanwhile I’m researching possible summer camps. And summer preschool (our current one isn’t open over summer).

The Tackler has far more options than his sister. Then it becomes a balance of chauffeuring duties, practicality (do I spend all of the “free” time commuting, or are we fighting rush hour for drop off, will we even be in town then, is that worth the cost?), and how well it fits the kids.

My head is spinning.

And the pressure to make “the right choice” is weighing upon me.

I could really use a crystal ball. So I don’t screw this up.

My cat shares my hate of needles.

"You aren't going to stick me with the needle yet... are you?"

Toss in Shaft: my sweet, snuggly, and recently diagnosed diabetic cat (he and I share a profound distaste of needles). And his sudden increase of “WTF is a litterbox? This is MY house.”

I don’t know if it’s the recent diet change, the insulin, or payback for jabbing him with needles, but I do not deal well with excrement or pee outside of the proper disposal container (i.e. diaper, toilet, or litterbox).

I’d probably do the same thing if someone randomly jabbed me with needles twice a day.

Did I mention there isn’t a generic drug for insulin and how it is highway robbery what they charge for a drug required to prevent death? Seriously, we could fly to Iowa on what it will cost for a year of medication.

Why can you not put family pets on your health insurance plan? They are family, dammit.

I’ve added “research pet medical insurance” to my list of things to Google…

Finally, I watched as my dear friend Bobbi (who already battles OCD and recently beat suicidal depression) was tossed another obstacle: epilepsy. 

For the last few months, she’s been passing out – usually following a panic attack or a state of high anxiety. There was a learning curve, but we learned to adjust to help prevent injuries.

Then the seizures started.

They have gotten stronger.

I watch her body shake, contorted, as her limbs and head bang into the ground – into a grand mal (aka tonic clonic) seizure.

I roll her onto her left side and time it, trying to place blankets and pillows beneath her body to prevent injury.

I release my breath when her body stills, at peace again.

I check her breath and pulse, just to be sure.

The only good news is, she has an aura before the seizure – a sign one is coming.

The bad news is, a part of her feels that listening to the aura means she’s letting the seizure win. She should fight it. She’s strong. She’s pushed panic attacks to the side before, surely she could so the same with seizures.

As terrifying as seeing a seizure is, it is this inherent part of her that scares me the most.

It puts her in the situation of passing out and hitting her head or breaking something. Of doing so in an unsafe location to have a seizure.

She wants to hide, not ask for help.

So I lecture her and piss her off.

Because I’d rather run the risk of her anger for the hope of getting the essential truth across to her: you aren’t giving up by listening to the warning signs and preparing for a seizure. You’re are putting yourself in the best fighting position to not let it win.

And when she does ask for help, I come.

Because no one should have to go through that alone.

My plate and brain are full. 

And my stories whirl around, trying to get out. Tales of joy, the circus, new milestones, laughter, even stories still locked away from Christmas.

Hopefully they’ll make an appearance soon.

Before Easter.

Before my brain explodes like that dude in Scanners. Or the aliens in When Mars Attacks.

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About Kelly K @ Dances with Chaos

Kelly K has learned the five steps to surviving of motherhood: 1) Don't get mad. Grab your camera. 2) Take a photograph. 3) Blog about it. 4) Laugh. 5) Repeat. She shares these tales at Dances with Chaos in order to preserve what tiny amount of sanity remains. You can also find her on her sister blog, Writing with Chaos (www.writingwithchaos.com) sharing memoir and engaging in her true love: fiction writing. It's cheaper than therapy.
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12 Responses to How a Full Plate Leads to Writer’s Block

  1. ocdtalk says:

    I have no doubt the stories will be written in due time……right now, you are dealing with LIFE, and it sure is never boring for you! I am saddened to hear of Bobbi’s epilepsy but so happy she has you by her side. Keep “lecturing her and pissing her off!”

  2. Since your brain (and plate) is so full, please please please trust me when I say this:
    Whatever choice you make regarding kindergarten and the Tackler will be just fine.
    For real.

    He’s bright, you’re bright. And (sorry if this seems to minimalize an important issue) it’s kindergarten.

    I agonized over similar choices when Jack was entering kindergarten; but looking back, I realize it just wasn’t that earth-shattering in the long run. He’s 14 now and in four honors classes plus Spanish. He takes karate and kicks ass. Literally and figuratively. Physically and academically.

    Your boy will be phenomenal because he has phenomenal parents who love him.
    Everything else is gravy.

    (Yum. Now I’m hungry.)

    But (on a serious note) my goodness I am sorry to hear about Bobbi. I hope that she will catch a well-deserved break soon. And in the meantime, you’re earning your spot in heaven.

    • I know that kindergarten will likely have little effect on his school. I think. Unless he hates it.

      Ahhh, the parental doubt is strong.

      Ten years from now, I think I will be able to finally look back and go, “What was I worried about?”

      Sadly, it does not take the worry away.

      Send thoughts of love Bobbi’s way. This latest thing is making her wonder why the universe is “kicking the crap” out of her.

  3. It really is overwhelming sometimes, isn’t it? Bobbi must be so angry! you too. this is so unfair but you both have to keep fighting because it will get better. As for Kinder, God I remember agonizing over this for both my 1st and 2nd child. By the third I kind of knew what to look at, which is your child’s personality and what he’ll be most comfortable with. Education in public schools and in private really (I’ve done both) comes and goes. Look at class size, etc and bet of luck.

    • It’s nice to know I’m not the only one going a bit crazy over something that “doesn’t matter” like kindergarten.

      Because it does matter to me. The right (or wrong) teacher early in life can taint your view of school.

      Thank you for the kind words.

      And yeah, this seizure stuff is just cruel. Hopefully it will be temporary and go away. Soon.

  4. Kerry says:

    The elementary school near you is one of the best in the area—also, you could do IB kindergarten near your MDO.

    Sorry to hear about B. I had no idea.

    • I have my doubts about it being “the best”, but it does have some benefits. I absolutely love the art teacher at the public school and there are two possible teachers who might fit well with The Tackler – but one of them might not be teaching kindergarten next year (my favorite).

      I’m continuing my research.

  5. TheKirCorner says:

    I feel the same way right now and I don’t half of what you have going on. Honestly I just want to take a long winter’s nap and wake upp with some answers and be well rested.

    I agree with the others, the choice you make for the Tackler will be the right choice becuase you are taking the time to make it, giving your energy to it and doing what is best for your family.

    We’ll be here when you’re ready to write …always.

  6. John says:

    My heart hurts for your issues with Bobbi . . . but I’m so incredibly thankful that she has you.

    There are family pet insurance plans . . . I used to have one that was $20/month – we always had to use the same vet, but everything was covered. When I moved, I meant to find a new place, but everything I find now is “pay the vet, and we’ll reimburse you,” and I’m still fighting over the very first vet bill I had.

    • I think I will request my husband research pet plans. If it saves anything on insulin it would be worth it….

      Bobbi is so amazing, she really is. And she gives even better than she receives, so she isn’t the only lucky one. 🙂

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