Thursday, February 26, 2009

Easier Digestion

I believe anyone can climb a mountain. Anyone can run a marathon. Anyone can write a novel. With preparation and the right approach, any of these things are possible. It's all about breaking them down into manageable chunks.

It helps to have someone pushing you. My old hiking friend used to pull the old, "let's just go to that tree up there." My running friends did the same thing when I was first beginning to train. And the thing is, you can always reach the tree. And next time you can probably reach the tree after it.

In 2003, I got laid off and I decided to write a chick lit book. In 4 months, I wrote 216 pages. The only way I made it through was by dicing that story into smaller chapter stories and slicing those into outlined scenes. I'd get through one and move on to the next. (Note: That novel is still in manuscript form, gathering dust on a bookshelf but at least it's finished!)

I'm so thankful that somebody—or many somebodies—taught me to take things in small bites. It's what is going to get me through the next several months.

Breaking down the months into weeks and weekend Skype dates; punctuating those weeks with a visit to London over Easter; hopefully closing up the months with a move abroad—this makes the whole thing a little easier to swallow. It takes the edge off a climb that seemed impossible to complete. And I'll keep pushing myself to reach the next tree and the tree after that until I reach the one he's standing under.

10 comments:

Dingo said...

What a great outlook you have on things, Mel Heth. I love reading about your perspectives and thought processes as you go through this.

I know this temporary separation is tough for you. Can you imagine how difficult this must've been before Skype, Travelocity/Expedia, email, etc?

Mel Heth said...

Thanks, Dingo. :) You're very sweet and you make me feel more motivated to stay strong.

I can't imagine life without Skype and the Internet. And I'm very aware that my situation is NOTHING compared to what a lot of people go through. Military wives, people who actually lose someone...I'm lucky and pretty wimpy, too. :)

Mandy's Kidding said...

This is the perfect reminder for us to all take it one step at a time. Also reminds me of Anne LaMott's "Bird by Bird." Have you read it? It's one of my favorite books on writing.

Wow, that was awkward said...

Of course you'd rather be together, but sometimes distance can makes those times together even more priceless. The anticipation and then seeing each other again. The sadness of leaving, but instantly looking forward to the next meeting.

Your peas in the pod is a good pic. You two certainly seem to be just that.

Wow, that was awkward said...

Wait, those are beads aren't they. Well, they look like peas in a pod. Sheesh, I gotta wake up...

Mel Heth said...

Mandy - I've read another Ann LaMott book (can't think of the title) and I loved it. I will ask for Bird by Bird for my birthday.

Wow TWA - I didn't even make the peas in pod connection. Thanks for pointing that out! I actually thought they WERE peas, they were just strung together. I was just looking for something in small bites...peas seemed the right image. I owe you an email!

Hannah said...

That's the best way to do it. Just break it up into parts. I am sure it is going to be hard but you can do it. You are a very logical and smart person.

Your post is such good motivation for anyone who is facing a challenge.

And everything people have said before me is true, it will make the moment you guys are reunited so magical. Just like Forest and Jenny running through the pond at the Washington Monument.

L said...

It may not fly, but your outlook will make it a lot easier. :)

brookem said...

i need to read this book!!

thecoconutdiaries said...

Um, who do I have to smack/kill/sleep with to read this dusty novel??