2021-01-06 Abbreviated Celebrations and Delayed Considerations

Monday night I finally ceremoniously graduated from the MFA program I’ve been engaged in for the past 3 years. It was a great experience. I watched, cried, and then popped briefly into the “library pub” zoom after to see who else might be on celebrating. As it turns out, very few people were and I basically listened in as they talked about the times, the change in academic curriculum fueled by recent events and the shift in focus. I didn’t have a ton to contribute as I’m not in the academic scene and the one relatable example I had in my experience is something I didn’t even think about until after I left the meeting. Such is life. 

After I left the meeting I had to get my crew and myself some food and so my focus shifted immediately to local needs and the celebration was short lived. . Such is life.

Yesterday I gifted myself with a down day. I did a few urgent things but otherwise stayed in my morning “lounge” clothes all day. I didn’t, walk, write, wear a bra, shower,  put on makeup, or start any new project or take on any chores outside of doing the dishes and collecting recycles and trash. I had minimal communication with people. Which is probably the best way for me to decompress, think, and relax. 

As I approached dinner time, having finished episode 5 of the season of the bachelor I’m binging right now, I made the dinners, and decided I would celebrate a little with a glass of wine. That glass turned into 2 or 3 and I subsequently had an early end to my evening. My people know that when I start sleep talking from a half supine position on the couch it’s time to get me to bed. 

It’s good to have people who know when to get you to bed, even if it’s only 9pm. I was still lucid enough to catch Jim taking video of me rambling and I’m sure that will be very entertaining to watch this evening. I’m sure he was disappointed that our celebration dissolved so quickly. It’s proof that one of my priorities this year will be to fix my sleep.

That’s another thing I gifted myself with not thinking about yesterday. The new year and resolutions, goals, measurements. But I did have a brief text with my accountability partner, T, and promised to pick up this week where we left off last year.

As we approached the holidays, things just started getting too busy and moving too fast, for us both I think. Time to recalibrate and regroup!

This is the first thing I began thinking about on my walk this morning. It’s not the first thing I wrote about obviously.. but it is something I want to get into with a quickness. 

Unfortunately, my kids and kittens and my husband who isn’t even here have other ideas. I suppose one of my main objectives is better life balance so it’s fitting I have to cut this walk and blog short. So much is being abbreviated because there’s not enough time. Such is life.

Next time, there WILL be resolution! 

Cheers, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-01-04 MFA Graduation Day 💃💃🎉

It’s about time. It’s about endings and beginnings, direction, voice, responsibility, and resolution.

Or at least it wants to be. Aspiration, experience, and discovering what life is trying to teach you. I mean me. When i say “you” I mean “me”. When I say “we” I also mean “me”. We’re all self centered. Humans. All pronouns are rooted in a center that’s concerned with self, with perspective, angle, intention. We’re slant. 

Sometimes this generative process I go through each day begins with fragments of thought. Most of the time I don’t have a lot of complete concrete ideas of what I want to write. I just have to begin. We all have to begin somewhere. We’re all alike in that. 

I suppose the difference between this writing and the production of poetry is that this writing begins and ends as an unedited first draft. All the fragments and incomplete thoughts, the “fluff” and mistakes are exposed. And I’m fine with that. I’m getting what I need from it and am satisfied. 

As opposed to the poems which go through a dozen (often many more) revisions. I’m way more concerned with mistakes, and turning every stone of the poem over to discover what improvements can be made, the tightening of the writing until it’s sharp as a blade. 

 Obviously in the MFA program we talk a great deal about this process. And in my last semester revision was a big focus of study as I was revising every poem in my manuscript. It takes a great deal of effort and even now, though it’s long been over, I look at those poems and see other things I could change to make them even sharper. 

Yesterday I attended a lecture about voice and how you can’t find your voice because it’s naturally in you already. Not a thing to discover, if you will, but instead something you just have to flex and grow. You have to hear yourself and also practice other voices. You have to go out on a limb. The metaphor the person giving the lecture used was that of a tree. The trunk and main branches are your natural voice. All the smaller branches, leaves, buds are extensions of that voice. But it still all comes from the same source. It was a great metaphor. 

My lecture was on voice too so I’ve done a lot of thinking about the topic, but the lecture yesterday opened my eyes to a few big pieces I’d not considered previously. 

First that our voice is sometimes something we’re suppressing because for whatever reason we’re taught it’s not correct. We lose confidence and try to change it, which doesn’t work. 

More importantly though, I had the realization that I’m kind of afraid of my own natural voice. Afraid may not be the right word. A better thing to say might be that I don’t trust my own voice. I think this is one of the  reasons public speaking scares me. I have to write out what I want to say because I’m afraid of my natural impromptu voice stumbling, being judged and laughed at. 

I literally wrote out and read my lecture (and my reading was just that too). When asking questions during zoom lectures I prefer to type my question into the chat and not speak out loud. This extends to other parts of my life too, specifically when it comes to my job and facilitating meetings. 

I’d much prefer to write out an email than  conduct a meeting. I’m much more comfortable with that. I’m not good at going out on a limb. I need to work on that. 

Today is the last day of the last residency I’ll have the opportunity to attend as a student. There are a few lectures left and one workshop. Later today there will be a virtual graduation ceremony highlighting all the grads. I’m not really nervous about it as I’ll mostly just be watching. The grads have composed a prose poem of sorts where we’ll each have our two lines to say in turn. That’s it. Then it will all be finally, officially over. 

I’ve had a lot of time to figure out what’s next and what my life will look like now. In truth, not a lot will change as I’ve already slid into not working a job and not having deadlines for school. My hope is that I can keep myself on task. Keep working on “going out on a limb” and pushing myself to stick with the endeavors I’ve committed myself to. 

I want to and think I will but it will be a matter if finding the right balance. Yes, it’s about balance too. Sleep, balance, time, health, direction, and responsibilities. More about that will likely appear in fluff in the musings of Miss SugarCookie soon (and always). 

My hour is up. Time to get going with the day. 

Cheers to endings and beginnings, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-01-03 Final MFA Res Day ??!… 🤦🏼‍♀️

It’s official…

I’ve lost track of what “MFA” day it is, what day or the week, and also what year. But I’m not ready for the new year yet and that’s ok. 

What? Did I just say that I was not ready for 2020 to end. Well, not exactly.

I’m ready for 2020 to take a hike but not quite ready for 2021. I feel as though I need more prep time to be off and running with a good start. 

It’s the same with a lot of things right now. With my time in the MFA program coming to a close, I should have more space in my brain to work in other things. But as I walk through my house this morning, every room is in desperate need of attention. 

The Christmas decorations and crap collecting in the living room. The kitchen is a disaster. The litter boxes are full. And on and on. Nothing like being inspired to write and then scooping the poops and losing every decent thought you could have had. Kind of like now, having so many things I want to write about but end up writing about chores instead. Good grief!! 🤦🏼‍♀️

Even if I don’t know what day of Res it is, I know how many days are left.. two. Today and tomorrow. That’s it. Two days to really make the rest of this count. And on the flip side, two days delaying getting back to normal life. Two more days of putting off things that need doing. I’m clearly torn. 

I’d like to have a few days to myself, alone-alone, to reconcile everything. I’d like to reflect on my reading last night instead of waking up thinking about the new year and all the things I’m gonna set as goals or try and do. I’d  like to revise the poems I had workshopped this past week. I’d like to spend some effort crafting emails back to various folks for this and that and really pay attention to my words. I don’t want to have to rush it or fake it or worse, just postpone longer. 

I probably should have been more demanding this past week with people in this household. Everyone has their own agenda. For once I’d like my agenda to be the primary one, and not secondaey or tertiary. 

I keep wandering back to that train of thought. I don’t want to. 

I slept through to 7am today which is glorious. But my FitBit has decided to stop collecting stats on my sleep so I have no idea when I went to sleep or the quality. I feel pretty well rested and maybe that’s enough. The FitBit not working is just another detail in a long list of things needing attention. 

See, there I go again. Ugh. That’s enough. I gotta switch gears and get to today’s MFA agenda (while most people in the house are still asleep). 

Peace and Love, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-01-02 Flip the Day… 🤸

If you flip the script on this day.. this date… the palindrome enthusiasts find a different day just over 10 years ago. 2010-12-02. 

Where was I early in December in the year 2010? 

I know this was shortly after I met a person who would change the trajectory of my life. By that time I was past my divorce and any necessary reconciliation required for moving on with my life and was open to entertaining thoughts about future relationships. The person I had just met was the first person I trusted with this possibility. I picked him, but he didn’t pick me.

For all intents and purposes, the door closed on those thoughts before it was given a chance to open fully. What snuck inside, however, while that door was briefly ajar was a spark of desire. 

I already had one spark, an unrefined flame, my desire to write. But this sneaky circumstance was something different, something new. I’m talking about the thrill I found in sharing my words. 

Thrill feels like the wrong word choice though. It was more of a sense of satisfaction, strangely even a sense of accomplishment though I wasn’t really accomplishing anything outside of perhaps becoming less adverse to risk and more open and ok with being “seen.” And everything that comes with posting my thoughts and poems on a public forum. 

The fear in it is not so much that I was opening up to the whole world, because let’s face it, there’s so much out here and very few people care enough to pay attention. The fear is in the building of an image, and perception from those who do care and also those who happen to randomly stumble across a poem or post. The fear is in people judging you and also in the potential of failure. 

But if you don’t have a concrete goal, if you don’t define the parameters of what qualifies as success and what measures to collect to determine success or failure, then you really can’t fail. That’s how I saw it.

Ten years ago when I started my first WordPress blog I did not have a goal. No measures, no expectations. Hence no failure. No stakes, no real skin in the game. Save my reputation as a writer, which I suppose I never thought about much. Because the person I was always writing for was myself. And I think I’m great! 😜

And I continued on like that for quite a while. About six years, before something more began to develop. This time it wasn’t another spark. It was more of a smoldering. Some low burning that might ignite given the right fuel. 

Turns out that getting an MFA was the right fuel for my fire. 

Flipping that date back over and it’s now 2021-01-02. Today I’m completing the last of the predetermined tasks to satisfy the requirements I need in order to graduate. At this point it’s more a matter of follow through as I’ve already officially received my degree and diploma. Even so, it feels like this is the final step, save maybe the graduation ceremony but I do t really have to “do” anything g for that. 

Today for the reading the focus will be on me for about 20 minutes. 20 minutes of just my voice and my words. I’ll be reading poems I’ve put my heart and soul into for the last 3 years. I’ll be sharing mostly from my thesis manuscript. And a few new-ish poems. 

Here I feel like “thrill” is the right word, I’m excited to read, share, and also to have it over and done with. 

Before that, there’s a fulll day of lecture, workshop, and other readings. I’m the last event on the agenda today. 

Time is short now.. time to get on with the day.

Cheers to a full, and satisfying day. Thanks for reading. Especially you, you-know-who, still supporting me from the other side of that door after all these years.

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-01-01 Hurry Up and Wait ⏰

Or.. It’s About Time.

Two days ago I started writing about something that dissolved into a rant about titles and hierarchy and how disgruntled I felt after not being recognized for my contribution in an effort I’ve worked on and care deeply about. I ran out of time while writing and was subsequently told to let it go. (Clearly I have not yet).

One day ago I started writing and it quickly morphed into a statement of gratitude I wanted to include in my “letter from the editor” for the lit mag I’m managing editor for. Oh hey, this is directly related to the aforementioned endeavor. They are one and the same.

In the middle of writing I elected to switch gears and just write the letter instead of a journal entry. Or was past due anyhow. The part with the gratitude to specific folks on my team did not make it into the letter. If you are reading this, M or T, please know I wanted to but it was apparently too much like a repeat of the last letter and that part was cut. It was also not all me, it was E, who said we’d fit the recognition in somewhere else.

This is the complication I’m dealing with. 

E is the person who gets recognition instead of me, publiclally and privately and I’m really sick of it. I can externally let it go, but mark my words.. if it happens again I can’t predict what my response will be.

See I clearly can’t let it go. But there’s just not time to work through it right now. I have to hurry up on something else that’s important. I have to temporarily let go of what happened two days ago and yesterday and focus on today and tomorrow. 

Did I mention it’s now 2021. Good gravy how can I possibly put thoughts about that on pause too? But I have too. Where are all these things when my mind is dry and I’ve nothing to say? Why do noteworthy events huddle so close together? Ugh!!! 

But I have to focus. 

Focus. 

Today my goal is to wrap the prep and practice for my reading. It’s the next big thing that’s in front of me. Yes, there’s more res today to attend to but that should be a snap. 

Unlike the lecture, the reading doesn’t make me as nervous. That’s kind of a puzzle but one that I’m happy I don’t have to solve because it’s a good thing. I’m actually thinking of sending invites to like everyone I know to tune in and watch. Though I doubt most people will be interested in hearing me talk and read poetry for 20 minutes. If you are reading this and interested, message me and I’ll send the zoom credentials. Ha!

It’s also my opportunity to say a few words, which I will not get to do for graduation because of the sheer number of folks graduating. The question for me becomes.. how much time of poems do I sacrifice to say other things? It’s supposed to be a poetry reading, but damn, I just have a lot to say. You know? 

I suppose that first bit of writing I made reference to earlier is connected. I have been invisible all my life, and that comes at a cost. But we often don’t know the cost until it’s too late. 

Cutting to the heart of the matter, I don’t want to get to the end of what I’ve been offered and feel as though I’ve wasted time. 

Seriosly. A set of my poems were workshopped this week and the mentor facilitating pointed out the theme of time that was in all of them, more prevalent in some than others, but a current flowing between them for sure. She also said she liked the poem about my divorce the best. Which was sort of eye opening. I felt it was the weakest. That fact proves that taste is so subjective. 

That poem will not be in my reading. At least one of the others will probably. But I still need to figure out which ones to cut because as it is now, there’s too much. 

The good news is that I talked myself out of including a few I felt were really important. In a way, the lecture on editing (from the other mentor whose comment referencing E and not me), helped me realize that the audience is important and not to be too in love with new writing. Which are both good points to remember.

So I’m sticking with poems I have high confidence in and are perhaps more universally understandable. Nothing too specific with divorce, castle, or my parents (who might be tuning in). There’s also no poems about my children and that’s interesting. 

Interesting in that I’ve written very few about them. Or patenting. I have one I could read but I don’t have any confidence in it and it’s not polished. So I won’t. I digress.

I’ve got a lot to get done today. I really want to climb up to my tower in the castle after this and work at it until I’ve got at least the reading set. Then move on to other things. 

When this Res is over and things settle down, there will be more time to write about everything else. We’ll see if it all remains pressing with the passage of time. 

Until then, peace and love and happy New Year!

~Miss SugarCookie

2020-12-30 Final MFA Day 2: Gathering All the Internets

I’ve gathered all the internet in the house that I could do as to try to get a good signal in a more isolated location. Maybe I should put the cable modem, WiFi router, and signal boosters in my car and drive away. 

Never mind that. There’s a giant snow pile behind my car and I’m stuck here. 

I just can’t seem to get out of my own way. I for sure thought that once that stupid lecture was over, I would really enjoy my week. But alas, it’s not happening. 

I’m in such a mood already and taking the “trash” out yesterday to find two full bags full of trash mixed with recycling set me off in a big way. I don’t ask for much. You know, as the person that runs this household, but my one big thing is recycling. It grates on me to no end that something so easy is just not done. My wishes ignored. I want to talk with these teenagers with authority, but in two cases my hands (and mouth) are tied. 

Clenching my teeth while sorting through disgusting trash bags to pull out bottles, cans, cardboard, and paper do nothing to help the migraine I was trying to get over or the rotten mood I was in. Listen, I was wearing a brand new sweatshirt I got for Christmas and the last thing I wanted was to get it stained with some unknown drips or goo from the trash. Just gross. 

I could not help myself. I picked a fight with the only other adult around. I admit it, I knew it was wrong of me in that moment to come swinging into the living room where Jim was eating his dinner. I simply just could not help myself, 

If I was in Nebraska city right now I wouldn’t be taking out the trash, you know, so there’s that too. 

My grievance was met with and equal and opposite grievance about dirty toilets (which he’d spent time cleaning) and I thought, well, here we go. Our first official fight. I mean we’ve known each other almost 3 years so it was bound to happen eventually. But now? Why now?!! 

We agreed, like adults, that the timing for the discussion wasn’t right and that we should dismiss it. Ok fine. 

But then I pressed for “when” and that too was met with a snark of a reply, was it so wrong for me to not want to fall in an all too familiar pattern of keeping my damn mouth shut then have a blow-up at some future juncture? I just wanted some acknowledgement that we really would talk about it. I didn’t need “January 17 at 2 o’clock” as the reply or “oops but I’ll be at work, so sorry”. 

For real, I didn’t. 

Seems there might be more to talk about than recycling and dirty toilets. 

I had a future poetry book flash in front of my eyes. Title still TBD, but the cover has a picture of a princess morphing into a monster in front of a grand castle. Nobody wants to read THAT book. Least of all me. 

So I did some more zooms, multitasking, ate some food and had a drink. Tried to get time fast forwarded to bedtime so everyone would go to sleep and I could be alone. 

I’m not super prepared for today, but fuck it. At least my headache is gone. 

I’ve got two lectures this morning and workshop and another lecture this afternoon. So not into it. And I was serious about that internet thing. I moved the booster that’s usually near the treadmill up to a different area of the house. So I don’t have internet for reading online this morning. Ugh!

Is it only Tuesday? Good gravy!! 

Must be time for coffee.

~Miss SugarCookie

2020-12-29 Final MFA Day 2: Snowmageddon Anyone?

It’s like 2020 is holding the mic, refusing to let go.. saying “I’m not done yet bitches!” 

All the living under the rock life and blissful denial that I use to shield myself from what goes on in the world outside my door can’t protect me from the apparent snowmageddon that is now “pouring like an avalanche coming down the mountain.”

I think one of the things that I’m going to miss about being in Nebraska City for this residency is that now somewhat familiar feeling of being so immersed in the writing life and people that I wake up inspired with new ideas. Rush through the days with thoughts that all feel like brilliant beginnings. Having to stop, mid-stride to get something down on paper or my phone. And also the emotional swing that eventually leaves me in tears. Yes, I cry, and though that’s so Miss SugarCookie, it’s also true. And I love it. I really do. 

It’s that “on the edge” feeling that makes me feel alive sometimes and crying is just a byproduct. I love hearing the readings and just getting lost in that moment. And there’s really nothing wrong with the crying. It’s a great release and I feel so good when I get to the other side. 

I’ve made the mistake in the past with relationships, thinking if I got wrecked that at least I’d have the emotions to fuel my creative fire. Dead wrong. But this is different. It’s fueling the fire in a different way. It’s immersion of thoughts and feelings that’s not sooooo close to home. 

Yes, I get there sometimes too, in workshops where we’re forced into our own memory, but it’s mostly the fires of other people burning around me I think that sparks my own.

Which is exactly why I don’t think this virtual res has the ability to generate the same atmosphere. I’m trying to attend as many readings and lectures as possible but closing my laptop and walking down to the living room is just not the same. Somehow I wish I could somehow isolate myself from the rest of the house to try and capitalize on this last official residency. 

In other news, I did my lecture yesterday and it came and went and OMU (Oh My Universe), when it was over I felt like a Born Again Human. It was like the best feeling to have that over with. I might have mentioned my love/hate relationship with public speaking but I think It’s like 80/20 with hate taking the lions share. The worst part?…

It was virtual so I didn’t even get to show off a cute dress. Damn! 

If we were in person I would have THREE opportunities for cute outfits but that’s all out the window. Yesterday I was debating even what pants to wear. I mean, would nice pants that match my top have given me more confidence? Or would it have been better to be comfy in pajama pants? 

What did I choose? 

The world will never know. 🌎 

JK… I wore nice pants. 😜

The lecture being over means I get to relax and enjoy the rest of the week. And looking out the window, it looks like I’ll be stuck in for a while so it will be a good week to have that coffee and Bailies Irish Or hot chocolate with peppermint schnapps.

One other advantage of being home for this Snowmageddon is the fact that my husbands office was closed today so we got some extra special snuggle time this morning before getting up. Extra, extra special. Mmmmhmmmm.

Anyway, today my poems are being workshopped which I love! And it also means that I won’t have to talk and dont have anything to prepare. The only thing I have to prep for today is a faculty lecture for which we had materials to read in advance. I really hope it’s not a lot as I haven’t even opened the file yet. 

Actually.. I think I’ll go do that now just in case it is a lot. 

Cheers to Day 2. It’s gonna be great!

~Miss SugarCookie

2020-12-28 Final MFA Res Day 1: Jump In

Here’s where journaling almost every day comes in especially handy. Throughout my MFA I have documented my experiences including a day-by-day account of each of my residencies, both official and unofficial. This makes comparing the virtual experience an easy task. Being at home, though kind of a drag, has definite advantages. 

Normally waking up on day 1 at Lied lodge, i would be making my way (early) to check out the exercise room situation, not knowing what newbies might be treadmill junkies too. No worries with that today. I’m a happy camper walking in my comfortable, happy place. 

I’ve also already taken care of the breakfast and lunch making and the dishes for the day, which, normally would be a task I would be released from for ten whole days. That kind of sucks. It is one of the things I look forward to. No dishes for ten glorious days!! 

Since it’s my last residency, I’m released from attending any events that are for students enrolled in the semester which includes the mentor introductions. The first few days of res are heavy with that so I will have more time today and tomorrow to ease into the content. And after today, when I give my lecture, I’ll actually be able to relax a little and enjoy it. 

Including mine, there are three lectures today plus workshop. Normally I really love workshop but it kind of depends on how much I have to say about the poems being discussed. For me today’s poems are very strange, not relatable, and therefore I won’t have a lot to say. I mean that’s not really valuable feedback for the person who wrote them. And I kind of take the stance.. “If you don’t have something positive or constructive to say, it’s better to not say anything at all.” 

I’m certainly not envious of the faculty mentor who is facilitating today. I wonder what they will say? 

I believe my poems are being workshopped tomorrow so I have nothing to prepare for for that. Yeah.. tomorrow will be more of a full and enjoyable day. 

Another difference with virtual res is the lack of interaction with folks around the lodge: the dining room, lounge, lobby, hallways, outside on the back deck or on the grounds. When I’m there I’m always doing this dance of trying to delicately balance those interactions with the time I require being alone.

I feel like with each res I’ve become more comfortable with the scene. Of course, by the time I’m comfortable life throws wrenches in. Now all this interaction is timed and on Zoom and it’s just so easy to avoid it. I’m going to  have to force myself to log in and see who is there. Ugh!! 

What else? Oh the lack of sleep and anxiety. So far feels like that’s going to all be the same. Doesn’t matter if it’s in person or virtual, I won’t get good sleep. But.. right now that doesn’t feel any different than my regular life. 

I’ve only been walking for like 30 minutes, but I’m kind of done for. It is probably due to that short night. It was so bad my FitBit didn’t record my sleep. I woke just after 2am and didn’t go back to sleep until like 5:30ish. And then was up and at it by 7. So maybe 5.5 hours total? Yeah, that sounds about right. 

It’s only 9 now and I don’t have my first lecture until like 10:30 so I’ve got time to work on GLR stuff which is my big plan this week. Capitalize on being under the umbrella of Res to sort of be absent from normal life, as much as possible anyway. 

Ugh. I’m so done now. Going to cut short and try to be productive. 

Cheers to Day 1!

~Miss SugarCookie

2020-12-27 Final Countdown…

There have been nights I’ve tossed and turned in my bed, unable to sleep for the thoughts in my head. Playing and re-playing a scene that was years, months, and weeks in the future. I may sound melodramatic but I’m sure as hell not exaggerating. I’ve been thinking about the lecture I have to give tomorrow from the first moment I found out that was an MFA graduation requirement.

I’ve given my fair share of presentations in my days, but it’s all been work-work. Work like, the thing I was the most expertest person in the room on. Hands down nobody can speak HL7 like I can (or used to, at the height of my career as a healthcare integration specialist). I had confidence on my side too. For this shiz going down tomorrow I have almost no confidence.

My mantra for the next 24 hours… fake it till you make it (through). Fake it till you make it. Fake it till you make it…. and on and on.

Maybe I’ve mentioned my love hate relationship with public speaking. It’s the strangest dichotomy to be terrified but also be so exhilarated and satisfied with the experience. What IS that? 

At least I’m giving my lecture early in res so that I can relax and cruise through the rest of the week fairly stress free. 

The virtual MFA res officially starts today with a check-in in just a few hours followed by a lecture by one of the faculty. Then I’ll be back on my laptop with a final run through of my presentation. Then that’s it. Then it’s just me internally freaking out and not sleeping and then rolling through the full day tomorrow. 

What I know for sure is that my content is solid. And that I have too much actually so trying to figure out what I can cut. I also need to write some conclusion. A pretty bow for the final slide. I’ve got ideas brewing but need to be in a completely isolated environment to finish. 

I’m going to try and start now, as I’m walking alone, but then try to finish after that lecture. Yeah. That’s what I’ll do. 

On that note, that’s it. It’s go time. Next stop Zoomville. 

Fake it till you make it… all day long!!

~Miss SugarCookie

2020-12-24 It’s Always the Eve of Tomorrow

Christmas Eve today. On one hand it’s all just fine. I have everything I need here. My people, love, nourishment, warmth, opportunity, and am looking forward to tomorrow and the adventures we will find there. 

On the other hand, it just doesn’t feel right. It doesn’t feel like Christmas or the cusp of another residency and I feel so angry and cheated by this Universe forsaken year. What’s a girl to do? 🤷‍♀️

You know, I was awake at 5 am. Another early morning. I get up and put pants on and shuffle quietly out of the bedroom. I check the cats and my kids. They are all awake too. For my kids is a late night. They are enjoying the holiday break and have switched to alternate schedules. For the cats, well, they are always awake at this hour it seems.

So I begin my regular morning routine. It’s like any other day for me. I grab my water, headphones, reading glasses, and phone and head for my treadmill. 

I step on the machine and set the pace to 2.5 or 3 depending on my mood. Pick a playlist or perhaps leave the music app on random shuffle (today it’s random). Then open some app to write what I’m thinking, which is now google docs. 

I’ll give myself an hour to muse about yesterday or today or some issue hampering my mind. That’s it. That’s the start of just about every day of my life now. And there’s comfort in it. The security of knowing what to expect is something I’m grateful for. I’m pretty lucky.

The thing that my brain is stuck on today, besides how this Christmas is so strange, is the MFA residency that’s about to happen. The lecture I’ve poured so much into that will be over and done in a hot 40 minutes. The poems I’m not prepared to workshop. The other lectures I don’t care about. The readings I’ll be sitting alone for, instead of with the people who have come to be my friends. No library pub meetups. No late night’s loitering about the lobby of the Lied Lodge. No winter talent show. No sneaking down to the exercise room by the pool in the basement of the hotel at 5am. 

I guess last that part isn’t so different. 🤷‍♀️

One of my friends from the program is trying to coordinate our class’s graduation speech and it’s not going well for her. People are either over it, or not interested, or procrastinating. Anyone who knows me knows I fall into the last category. 

I gravitate between wanting to take over and just letting it go. I wanted to give a speech. I want to have the oppprtuniry that every other person who has graduated from the program has had. I’ll get to say a little at my lecture or reading and I had already come to terms with this virtual scenario, but this graduation speech thing has me fired up again, 

If nobody wants to do it, I’ll freaking do it. But I don’t want to outright voulenteer if the wheels are in motion for something else. I know my friend is irritated at the lack of support she’s getting. What’s a girl to do? 🤷‍♀️

In other news, I’m supposed to go to my dad’s today as it’s Christmas Eve and he’s alone. But you know I’m not feeling it. I just want to stay home with my people and snack and play games. He’s got his other family coming over at 5 and I’ve already said we’re not in for that or a meal or whatever. Using the pandemic as an excuse when the truth is that Jim and I had such a rough time with trying to integrate last year and I vowed then we would not do that again. 

Things have changed now, my dads wife is gone and he’s “alone.” But there’s hurt feelings (mine) that don’t just get erased. And if my dads never had the kind of relationship with my kids that he has with his other grandchildren, I can’t force it now. I can’t force my children to want to go. Hell, I can’t even force them to go to bed at a decent hour so as to be fresh for spending the day together. 

I told my son (who somehow missed the gene that makes people generous with gifting) that I was expecting him to be up at 10 to go shopping with me to buy a gift for his sister who has the gene and has spent countless hours making gifts for people. How did my two children end up so different? 

Anyway. We’ll see on that. I’ve got some other thoughts brewing but that will have to wait. It’s almost 7:30am and I’ve already got over 10k steps. Time to do this Christmas Eve thing. Thanks for reading.

Peace and Love, 

~Miss SugarCookie