I give up! Now I can start.
It's January 26th, and my last post was dated January 11th. My plan for 70 Years Old WTF had been to write one post a day. But here I am two weeks behind. So I've decided to give up. Completely. Which means I can let go of my losses, and make a new start.
When I was a kid, whenever things got too hard, I'd tell myself I didn't care, press the "I give up" button in my brain, and walk away. It was easy. It came naturally. Then, some time in my 30s, I decided to be stubborn and I got stubborn about being stubborn. I stubbornly refused to change.
It was a life-changing decision. When my business got in trouble I stubbornly refused to give up, kept the business going, and eventually sold it. When the relationship between Bobbi and me got in trouble, as it did from time to time, and as I think is almost inevitable in a relationship between strong-willed people, I stubbornly refused to give up, and I stubbornly refused to compromise on a less-than-ideal relationship. I fought to make it her and me against the problem rather than her against me because of a problem. And once we'd done that we fought against the problem together until we'd defeated it. When she proposed giving up, I used my stubbornness skills. I refused.
I'm still married to my first wife and still in love with her because I'm stubborn. I've consistently refused to settle for less
Back to the blog.
When I first started falling behind I preserved my post-a-day fiction by predating my posts. Blogger lets you do that. I tolerated being a day behind, then two, then three. I preserved the fiction that I was still writing a post a day weeks after I wasn't.
Then everything went completely to hell. We drove down to Boston, spent a few days there, got on a train to California. The chaos of Boston and the family, the newness of the cross-country train trip, the change in my 'routine' as we arrived in California and settled into our digs, energy fluctuations as I got into my new coding project and started getting serious about work, a head full of details from doing the same, and my ever-present lack of discipline all ganged up on me. Day after day I found ways to avoid writing. And then, today, I found myself two weeks behind.
I could have refused to give up, and could have tried to catch up. I might even have done it. If I had written three posts a day I would have been caught up in about a week. Or I could have given up, which (the title of this post is a clue) is what I decided to do.
Stubbornness is a skill I developed after being a natural giver-upper. I practiced that skill for decades.
But giving up can be a skill. There are times when skilled giving up is better than skilled stubbornness. There's a subtle, but important difference between stubbornly refusing to give up and skillfully giving up, then starting anew. From the outside it looks the same. And for some people there's no detectable difference. For me, there is a difference. And the difference matters.
So I've given up.
And I've started anew.
My goal isn't to catch up. It's to do a shitload of writing. I'll publish my posts on the date and at the time that I finish them.
Then, as a treat, when I've written enough, I might decide to undo my giving up, and go back and change the dates.
Or I might not.
Either way, right now's not the time to decide that.
Right now's the time to read this draft, edit it, publish it, and start the next one.