Write or Die!
Write or Just Die
Funny sometimes that you spend the bulk of your life learning; learning to walk, learning to talk, learning when to be silent, learning to read, reading to learn, learning to play, learning when to lay down, learning to love, learning to stay, learning when to leave, learning how to live, and then, when it’s all said and done, learning how to die.
After your schooling is done, 13 years in “grammar school” and then college and graduate school, then learning on the job, having a career one you understand on a primal level better than anyone, only to be told HOW to do it by people half your age and less than half your experience. You listen and you follow directions, doing what you were told, but you do what you know best, what needs to be done, paying whatever costs, whatever fines they impose, and you laser focus on your primary task; to serve, to help, in my case the students and their teachers and specialists like me, you play the game until you don’t and you’ve counted down the years to retirement and freedom. Freedom to say and do what you choose to do when you choose to do it, “Freed from the shackles of a paycheck,” as I have often said.
So now you’re retired. No longer can you answer, “And what do you do?” with: “I’m a school psychologist” knowing that deep inside that’s really not what you DO as much as who you ARE. “I am a school psychologist.” “I work with children with learning behavior and emotional issues (never liked to call them ‘problems’).” So what do you do now? “I am RETIRED.” For some men that is quite literally a death sentence. Without a job, a career, a schedule, a routine, they simply enter a death spiral into old age and the mysteries that follow.
“Not me!” I insisted. I have a life outside of my work, my job, my career, I am a WRITER. Why? Simply because I write. Yes, I am an author because I have three books published under my name, so my status as a “writer” really has been elevated to “author.” But I still prefer “writer” somehow, because that is what I do most. Everyday, and every time the urge strikes. I have a thought and I have to drop everything to…write. To get it down before it leaves me.
And how I love it. Hated it during other phases of my life, hated it! Sign up for a class where a Term Paper was required- drop that sucker and fast. But now, with no research required, no long hours in the library, no note cards or outlines and rough drafts and annotations and quotes and bibliographies…just sitting down and letting my muse tease the words from my fingers onto the page. What a wonderful trip. And then to get to share it with all my friends online. Thank the Gods for Facebook! So here you go ladies and gentleman, hope you enjoyed it as much as I did!