Friday, March 25, 2016

A Conversation with Myself

Based on a true story.

It was a rainy and cool Sunday that promised a lazy morning in comfies and nothing more strenuous than possibly a few passes at the laundry pile. Literally hours stretched before me to do . . . what? 
“I don’t know what to do,” I mused aloud.

“Yes, you do.” The disembodied voice came from just behind my left ear. I turned to see who was bothering me. (I didn’t turn fast . . . I was reasonably certain no one was in the house besides me and Angelo.) Disembodied or not, the voice had a point. I did know what to do. I could write, I could read. I could catch up on email. All productive activities that required my attention. However, I was leaning towards earning another level or two in Hungry Babies. (Don’t ask.)

Then, that voice again.
“You’re some writer. Didn’t I see an event on iCal that actually says “Writing” for today?”
That sounded like a challenge. I don’t care who had the gall to interrupt my Sunday morning; a challenge must be met with self-assurance. 

“Well, yes, but, because of my schedule, my writing times are flexible. I move them around to fit in when I can.”


Clearly, what I was hearing was the voice of my inner, nagging critic and she decided to make an appearance and butt in on my indecisiveness this morning. Apparently she thought she could goad me into doing something more industrious than catching up on the news from my daily Skimm email. Voice identified, I was pretty certain I could hold my own in this verbal contretemps.

“I haven’t had breakfast yet. Angelo is going to build a fire and I was going to read…”

“How much breakfast do you need? And Angelo can build a fire while you write...he doesn’t need your help.”

Why don’t inner voices sleep in on Sundays?

“Alright, alright. Fine,” I said. (I drew the line at acknowledging she was right.)

“Who are you talking to?” asked Angelo, heading towards the fireplace with an armful of kindling.

“No one important,” I said. (Ha! Take that, inner critic!)  I pulled my laptop out of my work bag and booted it up.

It turns out, it was a great morning for sitting in front of a fire and catching up on writing. Not responding to email or reading the thriller I was 100 pages away from finishing or even wasting an hour on the silly game I originally downloaded for Luca. Actual, satisfying, long overdue writing. My inner critic is always making me second-guess myself, in just about everything I do: parenting, grandparenting, finances, clothes, potato chips (I usually win that one). I should spend more time listening, though, because, isn’t my inner critic essentially a combination of my own intuition and learned lessons?  That’s the last thing I’ll tell her, though. Like she needs any more encouragement.


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