February 22, 2021

It’s foggy today, cold but beautiful. The cat (the kitten) is sitting at the window wishing for the life of him that he could get out and kill something, or at least that’s what I suspect he’s thinking. His nature is to prey upon prey, even if it looks awfully cute indoors with a feather toy. He’s present in the moment, cute or not. He’s endlessly creative in his faux murders. He’ll leap and bound and stalk and drag off the feather toy. We’ve gone through three at this point in his short life. He’s not blocked or set back, he’s fully alive, though perhaps he struggles with his confines.

I’ve gotten a hankering to do a podcast and as such am researching names. Names are CONFOUNDING no matter what the topic. Often, I’ll have what I think is a great idea and look it up and yep, it was a good idea because someone else took it! Or multiple someones made multiple versions of that name. And of course if you are engaging in branding, you want something that tells the audience immediately what you are about…mostly. Something appealing, or edgy, or comforting wrapt up in a short turn of phrase.

If you get a good name, you need to grab the socials too. I learned that early.

Cart before horses? Julie, you don’t even have a fully fledged concept yet. Well, maybe I do and maybe I don’t, but I sure as hell am not gonna have a concept without an available name.

All this to say, I’ve been feeling a creative part of myself waving shyly. I hate writing too much about it for fear that it will duck back inside my brain and shelter in place. People talk about writer’s block, right? And while I can’t fully classify myself as a writer (I mean I write, and sometimes I write well, but I don’t have a career in writing, and the majority of the work I’ve done is blogging or magazine style essays, and maybe that counts but who knows), I butted up against a several year gap wherein I fell wordless.

From the better part of 2004 to 2015 (and from 1980–2000 before that), I created. Whether words on paper, or on stage, or on air, I was actively participatory in the act of creating. Even if much of that was producing, I still count it because producing is an art form in and of itself. wrote. There was a gap there from 2000–2004, but I was having babies and that’s a draining (if not creative!) process. Also, I had severe post-partum depression, which deserves its own essay one day.

But, I came out of that period of confinement with an even wilder desire to make things, help other people make things, and to feel fully present. And I did.

I moved in 2016, and was beginning a passage. It’s been a shut down time for lots of reasons. One, being new to a place. Two, the passage was that of menopause, surgery, early cancer diagnosis (all manageable but draining). Three, the politics and process of the time between 2016 and now have been oppressive and perhaps that has just impacted the sense of presence or flow on top of everything else.

So why wake now? If that’s what’s happening. Seems really silly to expect that a new president would make the change. Or that perhaps the confinement of Covid has reached a mental end for me. Like…I just don’t want to wait around through this anymore. Perhaps the four years, with this year (for it was a year ago things started getting super weird) was enough time for me to lie-in and lie fallow. Also, I’ve mostly stopped drinking, which also deserves it’s own essay some day. Lots of essays apparently.

I don’t have a natural or good way to end this particular morning writing. I’m trying to find my way back to the beginning I guess. Of the essay? Certainly. Of myself? Maybe so. The fog is still beautiful, and it’s chilly, but the sun and warmth will break through soon. The cat is happy.

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