When Honest Feels Awful

i think i can|ridingthedimeToday my writing was dubbed superficial.

I asked for an honest evaluation, and that’s what I got. Yesterday I would have been tempted to say it felt “like a kick in the teeth.” But I don’t know how that feels, nor do most people. It feels like the fall I took running a trail. Flat on my face, breath squeezed out, dirty and scraped up. A fellow runner helped me up and I finished the 5K at a uneven walk and limped back to my car. I called my husband and we headed to the ER to reset my dislocated shoulder. That’s how the evaluation felt.

I could choose to ignore what I’ve learned, and keep doing what I’m doing. But the reason I sought another opinion was that I knew something wasn’t right. A similar thing happened back in college. I’d written a piece that didn’t really convey what I wanted, and I was able to compensate when I read it aloud to the class. My professor said the words on the paper lacked the impact he heard in my voice. I should have listened back then.

I’m trying to listen now. To respect both of us and your time.

To provide something useful, even if it’s just a moment’s quiescency. That’s something else you might notice if you come back. I love to play with words and phrases, but many folks recommend that we write at a more elementary level. I don’t want to lose anyone with multiple references to obscure words, but I think learning is a lifelong endeavor, so I’ll toss a few in here and there. And because I’m not a jerk, I’ll share with you that quiescency means a state of quiet, and that the spell-checker hates it.

Why should you care?

We all have those days when we land face-first in the mud. It’s humiliating, but it isn’t the end of the story. If you choose to get up.  It isn’t easy.  The breath slows down, the pain abates and we can think about what to do next. And that’s really the key. Not the forever thing. Just the next thing.

Being a work-in-progress doesn’t mean we’re deficient.

As a parent, I used to worry over the day that just passed, late at night when there was nothing to distract me. Glossing over things done right and gnawing on missteps, both real and perceived. But in the morning, I’d start fresh and try to not make the same mistakes. I’m doing the same thing now. I’ll still have some of those nights, but like parenting, I hope I can focus and get the important stuff right. And you can too.

Welcome to the new me.  I’d love it if you said hello.

 

 

 

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