This is the second night in a row I haven’t been able to fall asleep, in spite of exhaustion that seems to be melting my body into a puddle. And my usual trick of taking extra vitamin K and eating cereal and/or corn chips didn’t work, so I’m up again, trying writing, though the extra meds are making me woozy and distractable and getting the corn chips into my mouth seems more important than getting the words on the screen.
A friend asked me recently what it feels like to write. I couldn’t really answer, other than to say that there’s a release as all that’s been built up in the writing channel gets let go. But I don’t feel it, it just is. I asked some writer friends, and they were as stumped as me by the question. None of us feels as if we write. We are instruments for expressions that are just there. Not that we don’t work hard at our writing. The will involved in shaping words into their most coherent, lively, exact and punchy shape takes attention and revision, but it’s still just there, waiting for us to find it.
And perhaps my insomnia is because I’m not writing about the enormity of what David and I are in the midst of. Again, it’s late, I’m up while David sleeps and no one else is here in this big house. David can’t remember ever being alone in this house before. There is a hoarded, piled mess to be sorted through where his mother has sat for the last several years, mostly lost in her wanderings through magazines and calatalogues and books and bags.
Today we found 19 boxes of tissues that had been lost among the stacks of magazines and newspapers and books. I haven’t counted the Vera Bradley bags but there must be a dozen at least, all stuffed with further bags and newspaper plastic sleeves folded and paperclipped then wrapped with papertowel and tucked in an inside pocket. In one bag I found a tissue box cut into different size squares and held together by a clip. I’m using a piece as a book marker.
There are 22 caes of Coke Classic in cans in the garage, 19 gallons of windshield washer fluid and two cases of tissue paper. There is a case of Cheezits on the porch and 10 jars of instant coffee. 69 cans of soup. And these are just the big, visible things. We opened one drawer last night and found such a wide and varied assortment of items we thought of starting a blog – One Drawer A Day. Each day we’ll open another drawer and recount the contents.
So tomorrow, the contents of one drawer. And there must be 100 drawers in this house.