Closing Writing - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 30 Old 04-27-2010, 11:05 PM - Thread Starter
 
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In closing, please write 15 minutes on each (or either) of these topics. It would be lovely to have you share these on this thread as a ritual of the process you are completing.

* What have I learned about myself from this process?
* How can I continue to use writing to support my creative journey and my mothering journey?


I stressed on the phone call to carve out time for your writing everyday even if it just for 10 minutes. Writing practice can be a spiritual practice and also support self care and well being. Read memoirs....But mostly, continue to show up at the page...Love and gratitude to you all~ Tanya
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#2 of 30 Old 05-04-2010, 04:25 AM
 
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My daily life is very outward focused, and sometimes a bit mundane: meal preparation, toddler toileting assistance, squabble mediation, lesson plans. My mind is constantly swirling with tasks to be done, issues that need researching, trips in need of planning, and the coordination of schedules, all while attempting to address the ongoing and continually evolving and frequently unexpected daily needs of my household. All of that, and preferably with grace and good humor, and quite simply, not losing my cool. Or when I fail and speak sharply, or react in frustration, or the dishes sit overnight, or the laundry remains unfolded for yet another day, then I must additionally deal with feelings of guilt and inadequacy. Most days are filled with tasks intertwined, pieces woven together, some completed as others begin, scooping up the stragglers and fitting them back in. My eldest is copying his earlier narration, my kindergartener busy with legos. I scoot away to reload the washer and to hang diapers on the line with just enough time to dry before the last of my stash runs out. I kiss a toddler’s boo-boo, fawn over my son’s penmanship, ask him to work on puzzles with his brother, while I let the dog out, clean up from breakfast, answer the phone, go tend to the waking baby. I do spend a little time to myself each day, often reading online: news headlines, snippets from friends, favored message boards. Even this time though is often spent multitasking- nursing at the keyboard, chatting with a friend while bill-paying, answering my husband’s call while sending grandma a birthday card.

Taking the time, over the last few weeks to sit down and express myself through writing has been a bit of a treat. I committed to this class, and my husband was supportive and we carved out a chunk of uninterrupted (for the most part) time for me to reflect, and vent, and contemplate, and write. I found it to be cathartic and enjoyable, and I learned I have a lot to say! I have stories in my heart, and experiences to relive, and morals to relate. My words may never be of interest to anyone else, but in expressing my thoughts and exposing my deeper emotions, I have already drawn several threads of commonality and discovered the ways in which my own life experiences have woven their own blanket, seemingly unrelated events actually influencing or foreshadowing or shedding more light on each other. For this reason, I intend to give myself the gift of continuing to write, simply for myself, without any other purpose or intent. I am blessed to be able to be home with my family and love my current career path, but a wiser, more centered, and maybe even less-stressed mama, can only be a better mama and wife in the end.

Aimee
~crunchy mama of four boys~
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#3 of 30 Old 05-04-2010, 10:50 AM
 
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(Sorry...I posted this in Week 4)

There have been few life altering events in my life, but this has definitely been one of them. I always knew I wanted to write, and for the last two or three years I have wanted to write my memoir, but fear has kept me from writing anything at all. I always felt like my story wasn’t worth telling and that even if it was, I wasn’t smart enough to tell it. I was afraid to start because I was afraid I wouldn’t finish, and what good is starting something you won’t finish? And I was afraid that by telling my story I would somehow be whining about my childhood and that I would upset my family.

This last month has been amazing. I have written every single day without apology, excuse or exception. I have realized that it feels good to write things down and that I feel better, more balanced, when I am writing. Today a friend told me that I’m different now, More confident. I think she’s right. I have learned that fear be damned, I can accomplish whatever I put my mind to, and I have learned how to work through my anxiety and fears. I am scared to death to have my journey posted. I am afraid people will read me and feel sorry for me. I am afraid of being judged or pitied. Most people who know me don’t know anything about my struggles and I feel a ton of anxiety over “coming out”. But ultimately, though I’m nervous and afraid that people will shun me after they really see me, I am excited about this. I wasn’t sure if I would use my name on this piece or not, but in the end I decided I needed to so that I can really own who I am.

Before I started this project I felt overwhelmed when I thought about writing. Now I feel overwhelmed at the thought of not writing. I feel the writing burning in me, eating at my soul, tearing at my mind. I think about writing all the time, all day long. I have learned what I knew when I was young but forgot: That writing is vital for me. It is a deep need that will not be ignored. I must write, and so I will.

addicted, homeschooling, freelancing mama to DS 8. Pet mama to Harvey the Wonder Mutt :, Pnut: and Autumn : Oh, yeah, and
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#4 of 30 Old 05-04-2010, 01:06 PM
 
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I've learned that I can have the discipline and intuitive thought to lead me down a path of reflection and to access my inner wisdom. I've been reading Clarissa Pinkola Estes' "Women Who Run with the Wolves" and am learning how important stories are--how stories are medicine--and we need to carve out the time to write down our stories. To tell our stories. Our stories matter. This is hard for me to wrap my brain around.

A long time ago, I used to keep a handwritten journal. I've done that off and on actually. Most of the time it was just a record of my days--pretty mundane--but sometime, looking back over what I'd written, I'm surprised at how introspective I could be and how engaging it was to read. So I know it is true that my story matters. At least, it matters to me. And that's reason enough to tell it. I've learned that I'm strong enough to tell my story and to be able to catch and hold other women's stories and keep them clost to my heart, as well as allow them to become part of MY story, just as I hope my story becomes part of other women's stories. The collective consciousness and wisdom of women I guess you would say.

I have always wanted to be a writer, somehow. I didn't ever know what direction it would take. At one time in my very early twenties, I just knew I could write a historical romance novel. Ha. I typed up about 50 pages and abandoned it. Too contrived, too forced. Then I was sure I could write children's books. Same thing. I wasn't ready, it was that kind of writing that I was/am supposed to be doing.

Now I write informational/introspective/environmental columns for a paper, I blog, and I write my stories and obervation. This is far more 'me' and I'm so grateful for this opportunity. Love to you all!

Krista, crafty blogging mama to four
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#5 of 30 Old 05-04-2010, 02:33 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi All,
I just heard back from Mothering....the web person is slammed but is doing her best to get the pieces up by MOther's Day!

Everybody appreciates all the wonderful stories you have shared....

Love to all~
Tanya
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#6 of 30 Old 05-05-2010, 01:15 AM
 
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Tanya, I sent you an email asking for instructions for week 3 but haven't heard back yet. Thank you!
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#7 of 30 Old 05-05-2010, 04:04 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Tanya Taylor View Post
Hi All,
I just heard back from Mothering....the web person is slammed but is doing her best to get the pieces up by MOther's Day!

Everybody appreciates all the wonderful stories you have shared....

Love to all~
Tanya
I'd appreciate just my first name on the website, if that's OK. I live on this board sometimes and wouldn't like to be recognized too much here.

Hope that is OK?

Olivia

I'm Olivia. I blog about physiological childbirth, homebirth, and unassisted homebirth!
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#8 of 30 Old 05-06-2010, 10:51 AM
 
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I learned that the time of day when I have fifteen minutes to write my brain is zapped. I realized that when I have down time I need to switch my brain completely to off with mindless TV. It seems that even though I would say I have quite a bit of time to myself as a stay at home mom it doesn’t really seem to be enough. I love to write but have never written in a structured way and when I try to I really struggle. I find it hard to write without saying ‘I’ all of the time! It’s funny to me as I read back through my old writing that most of it was written when in an emotional or vulnerable place. Happy writing seems to come from a more structured place. I’d love to try and make writing a regular part of my day, but I feel like there are so many things that I’d like to make a regular part of my day.

It’s overwhelming. I’m trying to eat better, trying to exercise more, trying to maintain my emotions in a different way, trying to be a good mom, trying to have dinner ready, trying trying trying. I don’t like to feel like I’m always running a marathon. I get so frustrated. It seems that I’ve learned that writing has always been a dumping ground for me. Maybe if I wrote in a structured way, carved out time in my day for it then I would be able to write about all of the positives and that might influence my day in some way.

So much to do and it takes so long to do that ‘so much.’ What I find interesting is that we are all faced with this right? It makes me feel so mediocre, why can’t I do it all?

I’m going to commit. I’m going to read more and write more. I’ll give up my online TV addiction….in a few weeks! ☺
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#9 of 30 Old 05-06-2010, 10:53 AM
 
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Can someone please clarify for me if this forum "Writing into Motherhood" is available for others to read or if it is just the small group that is writing? When I log into the forums section I can just click on "Writing into Motherhood" to get in and don't have to do anything else that is special....I'm confused. If I can do that can't everyone else?
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#10 of 30 Old 05-06-2010, 12:24 PM
 
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As far as I can tell, this forum is only open to those of us who are writing. I can't access, or even see it unless I'm logged in. At the beginning of the seminar, there was a slight delay in getting me approved for the forum, so I couldn't see or access it, even when I was logged in.

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#11 of 30 Old 05-06-2010, 06:56 PM
 
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I can't access it or see it unless I'm logged in.
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#12 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 02:44 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Just heard from Elizabeth at Mothering! The monologues will be up tomorrow!

Yay and a Happy Blessed Mother's Day to All!!!!!!

Love,
Tanya
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#13 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 11:12 AM
 
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As of 8:15am mountain time they still aren't up, but I'm excited to see them!

addicted, homeschooling, freelancing mama to DS 8. Pet mama to Harvey the Wonder Mutt :, Pnut: and Autumn : Oh, yeah, and
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#14 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 11:33 AM
 
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Can't wait to see them! Do you know where they will be on the site? I don't see them on the homepage anywhere but either I'm missing it or it's not up yet or not on the home page.
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#15 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 11:59 AM
 
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Can't wait to see them! Do you know where they will be on the site? I don't see them on the homepage anywhere but either I'm missing it or it's not up yet or not on the home page.
I don't know where they'll be, and I can't find mention of them anywhere either.

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#16 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 12:44 PM
 
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I have loved taking part in this project! It was great to know that other mamas were working on their stories, as I was working on mine, and wonderful to read about everybody’s paths and experiences. I learned that it is OK to let go of what I think is acceptable to say, and simply tell the story as it is. I have thought about writing my memoirs so many times, and this project has been a step in the right direction.
I learned that my story is worth telling. I also realized, through this process, how happy I am now, and how blessed I feel with my children and my life as it is now.
I am also quite impressed with the method Tanya uses – choosing fragments of the story, individual experiences, to write on and then piecing them into a whole is something that works amazingly well. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to participate!

I'm Olivia. I blog about physiological childbirth, homebirth, and unassisted homebirth!
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#17 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 02:50 PM
 
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Doesn't everyone have to log in to the site/forums to see the forums though? After log in I have access to everything, including our forum. That's why I'm wondering, seems a bit confusing.
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#18 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 03:01 PM
 
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#19 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 03:02 PM
 
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I can see the forums and not be logged in. Sometimes I don't realize I'm not logged in and try to post to a thread even and can't and am then given the option to log in.
Posted via Mobile Device
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#20 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 03:32 PM
 
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Doesn't everyone have to log in to the site/forums to see the forums though? After log in I have access to everything, including our forum. That's why I'm wondering, seems a bit confusing.
I'm not sure if Mothering works the same way, but I am an administrator/moderator for my local homeschool co-op. Our co-op has forums that can only be seen by certain people, and not by others. I have to access the admin controls on the profiles of the people I want to be able to see certain things and I highlight their name for that forum type. So we have two sets of forums, public and private. Everyone can see the public, but only members can see the private. I have to highlight which group to put new people in. I imagine that somewhere in the admin controls on our profiles is a group called "monologue" or something that is highlighted for us but not for other members. I guess the same holds true for forums like PaP and TAO that have minimum posts before access can be granted, or the SA forum that is open only to those who apply and have been members for a year or whatever their criteria are.

I feel pretty confident that this forum is secure and that the only way for someone to see it if they aren't members of this group is if you happened stayed logged in and your hubby or MIL checked MDC.

addicted, homeschooling, freelancing mama to DS 8. Pet mama to Harvey the Wonder Mutt :, Pnut: and Autumn : Oh, yeah, and
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#21 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 08:24 PM
 
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Is there a smilie of a little exploding guy? I feel like I'm gonna burst from anticipation. I haven't felt like this since Christmas when i was a kid!

addicted, homeschooling, freelancing mama to DS 8. Pet mama to Harvey the Wonder Mutt :, Pnut: and Autumn : Oh, yeah, and
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#22 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 08:47 PM
 
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I know what you mean!!!
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#23 of 30 Old 05-07-2010, 08:53 PM
 
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me too!!

Krista, crafty blogging mama to four
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#24 of 30 Old 05-08-2010, 10:13 AM
 
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Has anyone seen it yet? I still haven't.
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#25 of 30 Old 05-08-2010, 12:25 PM
 
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Nope...not yet. I never asked, but is this viewable to subscription holders only? Maybe it is up, but since I don't subscribe to Mothering, I can't see it

addicted, homeschooling, freelancing mama to DS 8. Pet mama to Harvey the Wonder Mutt :, Pnut: and Autumn : Oh, yeah, and
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#26 of 30 Old 05-08-2010, 04:31 PM
 
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I'm a subscriber but don't see it.
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#27 of 30 Old 05-08-2010, 10:43 PM
 
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Hi Ladies!

Did anyone figure out where our pieces are posted? Are they on Mothering.com or MDC? How can I find them?

Thanks so much!
Amy
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#28 of 30 Old 05-09-2010, 02:01 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi All...well, I am in the dark right now as are you...

Last word I got was on Friday that they would be up...hmmm.....If we don't see them tomorrow, I will nudge them again on Monday...I'm sure they will stay up for a while.

This is a secure forum. It was set up so other members could not read unless they were writing along...

May you all have a wonderful and blessed Mother's Day....what a gift...xo
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#29 of 30 Old 05-09-2010, 11:51 AM
 
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Thank you for the update, Tanya.

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#30 of 30 Old 05-11-2010, 06:01 PM
 
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Well, it took me awhile to get it typed up but here's my closing writing. A huge thanks to Tanya & Mothering.com for this amazing opportunity.

I’ve been blown away by this experience. I was reminded that I can once again commit to regular writing, not just the now & again, random writing. Free writing allowed me to write without the constant editing that my prior approach created. I’ve found that I have SO much to write about when I 1. Commit to daily writing, 2. Only commit to 20 minutes, and 3. Write on paper rather than on the computer. The 20 minutes makes it a manageable time frame. Yes, I’m a busy mom but I can find 20 minutes, right? And by approaching it from that standpoint I more often than not find myself going over the 20 minutes. Before, I too often felt I had to write a perfect piece each time I sat down, even if I was journaling. Too much pressure! I’d give up before I’d begin because I thought I had to write something only one way.

Now I find that I can’t write fast enough to keep up with the thoughts that are pouring forth & I walk away with so much material for future work. I feel encouraged & excited by this new way to express myself.

I’ve learned that free writing is not only a fantastic creative outlet for me in my crazy new life as a mom, but also quite empowering. At the end of the day I’ve not only gently guided my son through his day, attempting to teach him new things & protect him from harm but I’ve also wrote SOMETHING! Hey, it may not be anything special but I took 20 minutes to myself to sit down & express myself on paper. When it feels like some days are only spent wiping snotty noses & changing poopy diapers, a simple 15 or 20 minutes on paper is such a rewarding accomplishment.

I’ve learned I can do this! I can always try something new! I can always change! I’ve learned my heart is filled with far more emotion then I previously realized & the writing process can release a hell of a lot of built-up steam. I'm so very excited to further develop this new practice in my journey as a mother and creative human being. My heart is filled with gratitude.
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