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May 2, 2014
Burning Phoenix

Burning Phoenix

Time moves on. Whether we want it to or not, the beat and rhythm of life pounds out its continuous, steady beat. The sun rises. The sun sets. Another day passes.

It has been a month since I have posted here. I cannot say why exactly, but I felt as if whatever I had to say, no longer mattered. It wasn’t that I was depressed. I wasn’t sad or upset at any particular thing. But somehow, I got stuck.

Some of the things that I was hoping for in the larger scope of things did not pan out the way I hoped they would. The children who we have with us had some major issues of concern that needed attention but more than attention, they needed emotional energy. These types of things piled up one on top of the other for a while, and suddenly, without warning, I just got stuck.

I didn’t know what to say, and if I had a momentary desire to say something, I didn’t have what I needed to follow through on it. Imagine. Even though I am a part of the mental health community and understand and work with these types of issues with others; I didn’t see this one coming within me, myself.

I suppose this just reaffirms how very little we actually understand about the workings of our brains and our psyches. Even now, as I am ready to begin again and get back to what I so dearly love, I cannot quite name or identify what it was that happened to me that caused the drastic change in my attitudes, feelings and behaviors.

I know I am extremely grateful that the fog seems to have lifted itself, that there seems to be some color on the horizon of my brain other than gray. Maybe one of the reasons I didn’t see it coming is that the gray that enveloped me was a light shaded veil, not a dark, foreboding blanket.



That also fits with the fact that I didn’t stop writing entirely. I actually began a few other projects, moving myself into other directions, all in an attempt to find where I feel I most belong. Perhaps that is what got me into the state to begin with, not having a very precise name or identity to the niche that I feel I belong to – not truly being able to define what my area of expertise or specialty is.

A part of me yearns to be a guru or a maven in an area that sets me apart from the gazillions of other writers, but I haven’t determined what that is yet and it has begun to disturb me a lot. It reminds me of an old tape inside my head of my father lecturing me and yelling at me when I was a teenager because I would repeatedly begin things and not complete them. One of the things that comes sharply to mind, is that I enrolled myself into a correspondence writing course. If you’re around my age, you may remember how these courses used to advertise on the covers of a book of matches. And since I knew, even back then, that I wanted to be a writer, I spent all the hard-earned cash I had saved up over a very long period of time, and I enrolled myself into a writer’s course.

Stack of Books

Stack of Books

I still remember the excitement and unbridled joy I felt when the amazingly heavy package of books arrived. My father looked at me and told me in just one sentence what I hear over and over again in my head, all this many years later. “Just watch,” he warned. “You won’t complete this. You never finish anything!”



He was right. Although I made it through more than half the assignments, I did not complete that course. I gave up when it got to things like metaphors and stuff like that – and I have become aware that it is still a very strong issue for me, this fear that I will not see it through…that I will not finish what I start.
It has taken me this many years of time marching on for me to realize what he was trying to teach me was not to quit. THAT is a wonderful lesson with a wonderful message…but my dad just didn’t have the tools he needed to frame it that way. He wasn’t telling me I was a failure – but trust me when I tell you that I most definitely interpreted it (for way too many years of my life) to mean exactly that!

He did NOT see me as a failure. I know that to be true, no questions asked. But the way he said it and the manner in which I took it….they became the tools of mass destruction to my self-esteem.

So, as I sit here now, I truly can say I am grateful that I finally understand. I am elated that time has been designed to allow life to march on. And although my dad isn’t physically able to hear or witness it; I finally get it.

Taking a break isn’t quitting…part of perseverance is returning again…granting a new life!

Judy is a licensed clinical social worker and has worked extensively as a counselor with children, adolescents, couples and families. Judy’s professional experience in the mental health field along with her love of writing, provide insight into real-life experiences and relationships. Her fresh voice and down-to-earth approach to living a happier, more meaningful life are easy to understand and just as easy to start implementing right away for positive results!

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