Excuses, Excuses

I have no excuse. There is absolutely no exciting reason why I haven’t posted in seven days unless, of course, you count the following:

1. Post-residency exhaustion. That’s right, I was tired. Let’s see you go back and sleep in a college dorm for 10 days at this stage in your life! The beds are lumpy, the hallways are filled with slamming doors and the showers require protective footwear. Don’t make me spill the gory details (because I’m saving them for another day.) It should suffice to tell you that by day six, I made two of my new friends stop at a grocery store with me so I could buy a six-pack of beer. I then proceeded to knock back three of them in 30 minutes in the lounge area of the dorm. Yes. I got drunk at 4:00 in the afternoon. On three beers. I think I might have cried a little.

2. Post-residency letdown. I spent 10 days surrounded by talented new friends and faculty and I miss them. On my second day at Stonecoast, I wrote that I had “found my tribe” on my Facebook status. I can’t tell you how many times I heard my classmates say the same thing over the course of ten days. Returning to the real world, the one that requires hiney wiping and laundry folding, wasn’t easy. Not at all.

3.  I can’t write. My children won’t let me. In fact, as soon as I sat down and typed the very first sentence of this post, Kate came into the room and demanded to sit on my lap. She came armed with Pinkerella which, in case you were wondering, is “based on the classic game of BINGO” and it’s just as unexciting. I think that they actually missed me while I was gone.

4.  The pool turned green. Evidently, while I was away some sort of algae monster invaded the pool while no one was looking. The best part? I came home two Sundays ago and watched my children enjoying the cool refreshing water from my seat on the patio. However, sheer exhaustion caused me to miss the noxious green slime hovering on the bottom. It wasn’t until Joe asked for a jar to put his “new swimming bugs” in that I grew suspicious. Those swimming bugs were like no insect I’ve seen before. Ever. My children were swimming with them and I have no idea for how long.

5.  I drained the pool and threw it away when I realized that saving the Target glamour pool just wasn’t worth it.

6.  A heat wave struck the very next day. The day after I drained the pool… and it’s swimming bugs. I may or may not have cried. We drove to the beach where, despite record high temperatures 8 miles away, we all froze our asses off. Yay, Maine!

7. It became clear that stopping anti-depressants when I have three small children, a house to run and two years of graduate school looming before me was a terrible idea. Very bad.

Maybe it’s because I know that I am about to embark on some heavy-duty writing, but I think I just needed a week to do absolutely nothing but take the kids to the beach, to the movies, to the doctor and to the local barnyard. I’ve fed them a steady diet of ice cream with sprinkles, macaroni and cheese and hot dogs. Basically, all those things that I wouldn’t normally feed them. We’ve watched cartoons and taken walks. We’ve been riding our bikes, we swam in the neighbor’s new pool, we ran through the sprinkler and celebrated Joe’s 7th birthday with yet more ice cream in cake form.

Yesterday afternoon I napped on the couch.

Last night I watched a movie with my husband.

I haven’t planned the birthday parties. I haven’t returned telephone calls. I’ve wrestled with the fact that I’m going to need to dig deeper and write about the things that I’ve barely touched upon.

I haven’t stepped away from writing for this long in a year. Today I started to get nervous. What if I’ve been rendered speechless? Is this performance anxiety? Is it because I am overwhelmed by the amount of work I need to do to move forward as a writer? Is it because I miss the connections I made at Stonecoast? Or maybe I was simply taking some time to enjoy these people.



  1. …And those people are the most important thing in the world. So it’s okay to take time out for them. 🙂

  2. Enjoy those people! They need you more than ANYONE ELSE does 🙂 And although you have no excuses, I like them all.

  3. Sort out all that you can, step back for a while and enjoy those little people. Give yourself time to rebound; in true Kelli-style, you will. I’ve got confidence in you.

    Like I’ve said before, I’m always here, kiddo!

  4. LAst year, as I tried to deflate the blow-up pool…I got tired of wrestling the pool to get the air out. I went into the kitchen and got a knife and I stabbed it until the air was completely released…along with my stress. I then tossed the pool. I felt guilty for not recycling the plastic….but I did not have any guilt when I denied knowing what happened to the pool this year!

  5. So great to hear from you Kelli, but also so very understandable! You should take all the time you need for you and your loved ones.

    I’ve been on the same sabbatical-style writing pattern for a couple of weeks now; so much going on in my life and so little time to effectively (at least on my terms) jot it down. I am too much of a perfectionist to simply throw it out there, without editing to death and spending time I don’t have.

    So right now I’m reading Stephen King’s “On Writing” and it is incredible, and thanks to a few very choice words of advice from the King.. I think I’m finally getting my mojo back! In fact, I may even post by the weekend! No promises, but that’s the plan. 🙂

    Hang in there and enjoy the hiney-wiping and the little-butt-freezing trips to the beach while you can! ;D Haha. Hugs and lots of love!

  6. I think writers will always feel guilty. Guilty when we’re not writing because we’re not writing. Guilty when we are writing because we’re neglecting various other aspects of our life. It’s okay to take a breather. Enjoy those people and the summer!

  7. Summer is the perfect time to enjoy your family and take time off from writing. Don’t worry, you’ll have all of winter to be snowed in and have nothing to do but write!

  8. I love the pictures of “your people”. They are cute! I’m with Dweej, I like your excuses. 🙂

  9. I am laughing hysterically at the swimming bugs LOL! Awesome. That’s why I pay to go to a pool – I don’t have it in me to care for a pool in my backyard, and would no doubt be draining it myself after such an ordeal! LOL

  10. This is awesome. EEEK the bugs! And the feeling that you’re rendered speechless after not writing for a week? I totally get it…that and the fact that your children won’t allow you to write a word. I have to sneak away or wait until night descends at which point I’m usually exhausted or the ambition to do anything but crawl into bed pervades my very soul.

  11. I’m so happy you were able to find your tribe and had such an amazing (if exhausting) time. No worries, the words will flow soon enough!! I’m here if you need me. Love you, friend!!!

  12. I echo the above sentiments. Those people are absolutely worth taking a little break for. *You* are also worth taking a break for. Sometimes you just need days to decompress, watch movies, stare off mindlessly into space, what have you. You’ll come back fresh(er).

    And that’s what I tell myself, even though it’s so much easier to beat ourselves up.

    You’re a wonderful writer. Don’t ever doubt it.

Speak Your Mind