In a Rut, I am Stuck

Coming to you live from Tuesday night (at the time of this writing) and I’m stuck- yet again. I feel like I’ve hit the proverbial wall. Here’s an honest life update: my mind feels mentally fried. I am exhausted and feeling a little low.

The world seems to be in shambles and I’m desperately clinging to the positives right now.

My perpetual exhaustion is weighing on me. It seems like there’s always something to do, something to handle, something to fix, something to chase, and something to remember. Not to mention, Charlotte and I have been battling every virus out there since the beginning of time, struggling to stay un-sick (terribly unsuccessful so far). We’ve contracted (what seems like) every viral infection imaginable. Honestly, how many different strains of the cold and flu are floating around out there?

I’ve also been dealing with a long stretch of writers’ block for a few weeks now. Somehow, I always managed to sneak through at the very last minute for the last few posts, but I can’t seem to get over the hurdle of it tonight. The wall is too high, it feels like.

I would hate to miss a week or worse, write about something just to write something. So, instead I decided to do the next best thing: catch up with you guys!

What’s your honest life update right now? How are you feeling these days? Traveling anywhere soon? What book can’t you seem to put down right now?

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52 thoughts on “In a Rut, I am Stuck

  1. Hmmm…much family goings on, which is grating on my mind. Trip planned for later in the month but anxiously way pitching flight cancellations so staying mum so I don’t jinx anything. Reading an interesting non fiction about a painting I love, but I think it’s interesting to me as opposed to general interest

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  2. Honestly, I’m tired too…I had a few months of intense work and now I’m trying to get back to the “normal routine” which is tiring too 😅
    But staying positive and enjoying the small things every day, help me move forward 😉
    That bread looks absolutely delicious! It’s my happy place too 😋😉
    For books, this month I plan to read A three dog problem by S.J. Bennett, in which Her Majesty the Queen investigates mystery series with the help of her corgies 😂 Just to lighten up my spirits 😁😉

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  3. Are those bread pictures yours? More importantly, did you make those? As someone who’s attempted a couple of loaves, I have to say those look SUPER!

    Anyway, I get what you mean with the perpetual tiredness, sans virus. Am currently reading David Sedaris’s journal/book titled Theft By Finding, and even he was perpetually lost and tired, so you’re definitely not alone.

    I don’t have the magical saying to bestow you with added vigour, but I just thought to stop by and give you a little support. Take care, Jen!

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    • Thank you, Stuart, for the encouraging words and for making it known that what I am feeling relatable! 🙂 haha no those breads aren’t mine lol I WISHHHHHH 😛 It probably wouldn’t be a good thing if I learned how to make my own bread LOL just saying.. thanks always for the support 🙂

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  4. Don’t beat yourself up.
    If you’ve been dealing with all that, it is more than normal to feel stuck! How can somebody expect to be creative if you don’t even have the time for nurture creative ideas?
    Keep hanging on, it will get better.
    While reading your post I was seeing my life in front of me! I am trying to get rid of a virus myself while still taking care of my 2-yo who got it in the first place. On the other hand, I also have a 6-yo who got stronger while growing up and catches nothing!
    It will get better!

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    • haha I wish those were my breads… not so… but trust me, I will be bread shopping very soon and I cannot WAIT! 🙂 I’ve never read any James Patterson books but always see them on the shelves- next time I see one, will take a look at the jacket! 🙂

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  5. I hear you! It’s tough to stay positive with the constant barrage of depressing news.

    I recently started trying to stay away from social media and TV at night. I’m also trying to read before bed (on the nights that I’m not at the gym).

    Looking forward to my stay-cation at the end of the month.

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    • Yes, the news is the ultimate culprit. I am trying to stay away from that – digest it in small snippets. I think that’s the key through all of this because we will always see/read depressing things in the news because it will always exist in the world, but we just have to know when to cut that noise out and only allow in as much positivity as possible!

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  6. I’m so sorry that you guys are battling all the viruses. It feels like this has been a rough health season – my 2-year-old has caught everything going around daycare these past few months and then had to have a root canal so I totally understand. Thankfully my 6-year-old has stayed pretty healthy but I think the young immune systems are catching everything that they didn’t get over the last couple years in lockdown. And I’ve caught most of it too.

    It’s a tough cycle to recover from – navigating the uncertainty and then getting back into the swing of things. I listen to podcasts like Unlocking Us from Brene Brown to get me inspired and writing again. Your bread looks amazing! Hoping that happy place helps restore you all to health and flow again!

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    • Haha those are my (bread) creations, I wish but I will be on the hunt for yummy bread very soon! It always makes everything better in my house 🙂 Yes, I’ve been turned on to podcasts lately, I find it healthier for me to digest information than the YouTube route… videos are getting shorter and shorter, which is great, but it creates a generation of short-attention-span viewers (much like me) and then everything seems slow! Will have to check out that podcast, thanks for letting me know!

      Sounds like your household has been through the wringer too, I am sorry that you’ve had to deal with so much on your plate as well! Hoping for good things around the corner for us both! 🙂

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  7. A tip about writers block… there’s no shame in taking time off to refresh. Seriously it helps and then you’ll find that the stories come to you again!

    Honest life update: I’m exhausted too! We did 10 days of traveling, I just got back and all I did was sleep! My kiddo is with my mom for the next FOUR weeks. My husband is working so it’s just me running the farm. I couldn’t sleep because the house was so quiet last night but the up side is that I have alone time to read books and write my heart out! That probably sums up how I’m feeling too. My flowers are blooming like crazy and I have cut flowers for DAYS! Which is amazing. Im done traveling until we go to pick my kiddo up in Texas but honestly I’m burned out from traveling so I’m just glad to be home! I’m reading a weird series that I didn’t think I’d like but has been a wonderful escape. The first book is called “and then she vanished” by Nick Jones. I’m not a Syfy kinda person but it’s delicious!

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    • Thanks LaShelle, I find I am in this writing rut every few months… I sometimes try to push through and ignore it but I just couldn’t this too, I was overtired I think!

      Wow, 10 days of traveling is a long time! Being on your own for a short period of time sounds lovely (I can imagine all the coffee and writing delight) although I know you’ll miss your family like crazy!

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  8. I’m sorry to hear you’re struggling at the moment. Hang in there. It will get better. I’m doing okay. Looking forward to a week off work next week with no big plans. I’m going on a work-related trip to Colorado at the end of the month – just for the weekend. I’m kind of dreading it, to be honest. Every time I see the chaos at Pearson Airport on the news, I get stressed.

    I’m not reading anything at the moment. I have a couple of books in my “to read” pile. I’ll make a start on one next week.

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    • Traveling sounds scary at the moment – will be curious to know how your trip went as I’ve been shuddering at the chaos at the airports lately! Nonetheless, hope you enjoyed your week off Michelle! 🙂

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  9. Ugh. The ruts are the worst. I’m so sorry you keep getting sick. Do you have a slew of vitamins to boost your immunity? I could recommend some stuff…
    The bread looks A-MAZE-ING!
    I’m reading Never Split the Difference by Chris Voss. Good stuff!

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  10. First off, every writer I know goes through these dry spells. Give yourself permission to take a week off when you need it. Guess what? We’ll still be here when you get back.

    I’m not telling you anything you don’t already know, but it’s hard to be creative when you’re in survival mode or feeling crappy.

    Me? I wasn’t home, but our son FaceTimed with my wife today and showed us where he and his fiancee will get married next June. It does my heart good to see him so happy. He’s head over heels in love, which shows in his demeanor. Getting together with a couple of old high school buddies in about nine days. Looking forward to all of the laughs. Coming up on our 36th anniversary at the beginning of August and so grateful to have this incredible person in my life.

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    • Aw, what a wonderful life update Pete! I am so happy for you to be celebrating your 36th wedding anniversary and to be welcoming a new daughter-in-law into your life. She sounds lovely and your son sounds so happy. It must be satisfying as a parent to feel like you did something right! All I want for Charlotte in life is for her to be happy so I can only hope for this one day! 🙂

      Thanks always for the unending support, means a lot! 🙂

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      • I’m fortunate to be at somewhat the same place as Pete i.e. being able to see friends, old and new, IRL. Even better than that I am also finally able to see both my kids IRL every day if I want to, at least for the time being till they fly off again, even if only temporarily. Like LaShelle, at this particular moment, I am savoring the chance to make myself more at home while one kid and spouse are on a vacation and I get their whole place to myself to hopefully more fully bond with 2 of my grandcats!

        I’m also getting more into the flow of my new hometown and so starting to do some more writing (in a class where we write our own obits) and reading since I have a new library card. Just finished The Lincoln Highway for which I will lead book club discussion in a couple of weeks. Amor Towles is an excellent and engaging author. His novels I’ve read so far have all been page turners, at least past a certain point. I have discovered this hurdle in quite a few novels where it has been well worth the effort to get past that point.

        Also wishing you a speedier and longer lasting recovery from your most recent illness. Maybe the fact that they’ve come so quickly means you’ll avoid them if/when they are “in the air” again?

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      • Thank you so much – yes I am still hoping that’s the case… maybe all these viruses pitching a tent in my home means that our family will be sickless and germ-free for the remainder of 2022 LOL one can only hope!!

        I am a big reader but sadly I haven’t been reading a ton during this pandemic- I am always in need of some sort of distraction and my attention span can be compared to a squirrel lol I seem to move from one thing to the next, whichever holds my attention best! Happy for you that you’ve found sort of a groove in your new hometown and writing class 🙂

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  11. I think sharing where you’re at is a totally valid blog post topic, even if you feel stuck. No one’s constantly nailing it, and I think it’s nice to hear from others who are also battling. I think this was a great post! Damn my life update is lame. Have lots of things coming up that I’m afraid to face, so I’ve been taking them one at a time, only stressing about the one nearest to me and then can cross that off my list and face the next. Lots of changes, overwhelming emotions, dumb dating situations, you know, the usual 🤣 if it makes you feel better, I skipped posting something on Thursday for the first time in maybe a year 🤷🏼‍♀️ I just couldn’t, and that’s ok. Hoping you and Charlotte recover soon!

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    • No life update is lame! Each one of our struggles are valid and we each deserve space to let some of that ish out! I would be happy to read about your life update as much as I’d be happy to catch up with one of my greatest friends! Plus, I love dating stories 🙂 Hope you share some on your blog if you’re comfortable, hehe 🙂

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  12. It’s difficult today Jen, more than ever … managing a household (your part that you do), working and having a child To have been fighting a good fight versus all these bugs just intensifies everything. Don’t be too hard on yourself. I find myself feeling just beaten up by listening to the news everyday. It is beyond comprehensible these days. I wish we had stayed in Canada. It is 56 years ago today that we moved to the States.

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    • Yea, I need to stay away from the news. It does contribute to my lack of energy reading all the sad news day in and day out. My friend, Canada isn’t perfect as you know, but for sure, the Americas are making me appreciate where I live more and more these days… 😦

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      • That’s for sure Jen. On the 8th of July it was 56 years since we crossed the border to live here as permanent resident aliens …. my father consoled my mom saying we’d return in ten years.

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      • No I don’t Jen – I have no family left. My mother and her brother were estranged for years and I only saw him and his family at my grandparents’ funerals and they made a rare appearance and got together for my grandmother’s 80th birthday which was just two months before she passed away. It was awkward. I have cousins but only saw them at the funerals – never even spoke with them. I have not been over to Canada since about 1990 to visit my aunt who lived with my grandmother … she passed away that year. I need to renew my passport as I let it lapse years ago and cannot cross the border without a valid passport.

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  13. Hi Jen. I know how you feel. I’ve been dragging my feet about writing a more serious blog post on a well-known author who died at the end of March. I finally started to write it. My next hurdle is getting my query letter down to one page. Summertime I am diligent about seeing friends, so I’m getting dates in place. I have some surgery coming up, which is a bit worrisome and distracting. Booking flights is way too expensive for our children and grandchildren to come and visit, which is sad. We have a beautiful pool and garden, which we call our vacation home, so life is good. I need to tackle my TBR list!

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    • Jennie, I wish you all the best with your upcoming surgery! I know all will be well and you will be taken care of! Yes, we seem to need a jolt of motivation mid-year, don’t we? Sorry you are not able to connect with your family in-person any time soon but it seems you are in your own haven over there so until you can see them again, you will be set in paradise it seems!

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      • Thanks, Jen! Yes, all will be fine. We are used to long spans between seeing our children and grandchildren, yet summer is typically a time we find a way to get together. It’s a change this year, but we’ll connect soon. We do have a haven over here. We laugh that neighbors are the big houses with small yards, and we have the small house with the big yard and gorgeous view- lucky us!

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  14. I can’t believe how many posts of yours I’ve missed. My honest life update isn’t great. Today I spent 3 hours with my son at the uveitis specialist, our 8th appointment since we started seeking answers on June 6. Symptoms are pointing to an autoimmune disorder. We have a procedure scheduled for next week that should reveal more.

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    • Aw Crystal, so sorry to hear it hasn’t been a great go of it… Hoping you get the answers you guys desperately need, that’s tough not knowing what’s going on or what’s wrong… All the best!

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