Advent (delayed) Blog Day 5: Blockage

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Do you ever have one of those days?

It’s when you’re waiting for news, not just about one thing but about a number of things.

You’ve done your job. You sent whatever you had to send. You’ve made an enquiry about something else. You’ve sent a reminder in relation to something where a reply is overdue. 

And if you’re a writer, you’ve probably got outstanding submissions and the day for notifying successful parties, or short-listed writers has arrived. No matter how often you check your inbox there’s nothing there. You become hypnotised by the mantra from email checks every few minutes:

Checking for Mail….

Updated just now

Nothing. Nothing new there, or if there is something new it’s spam or a scam or notification of a regular bill; anything other than what you want to read.

There is nothing you can do about it, other than sending useless reminders or follow-ups which are more likely to have a negative than positive impact upon the health of communication. You might actually draw yourself further away from a successful outcome by aggravating the situation.

What you must do, and I speak from experience here, is do something else. Move forward with something you have the power to move forward. Accept that some days are non-communication or misunderstanding days not just in your little world but in the universe.

On such days, I am convinced, nothing moves forward. Anything exchanged on these days is likely to be misunderstood. I suspect wars or minor skirmishes break out on days like these, perhaps unintentionally on occasion! 

From the point of view of people like me, in my little micro world bubble, there is true irony to be found. By nature I am a procrastinator, always putting decisions off, setting work back, generally sending out ripples of delay all around me. Yet, I am capable of getting very impatient with people I deal with who do not act or respond quickly. Perhaps there is a hint of karma in these days when things I want to happen, simply do not. 

I did not complete a poem about this but, as has become my wont, I wrote down a few lines, while still in bed, which may form the basis for a poem at some time in the future. I’d normally keep such early workings secret but, just to give a hint of the way my mind works, I’ll reproduce my scribblings, with the working title Blockage.

Actually, this will also illustrate a point I meant to make at the outset. Although I regularly experience these days of communication blockage with which I do not deal well, I tend not to suffer writer’s block. Even this type of minor frustration may set in train a thought process with the possibility of a creative product at some later point.

Remember, there is hardly anything which cannot be given a creative outlet.

Blockage

Can become an obsession, the need for welcome news and progress. 

This morning I stayed two hours extra in bed

much more than my required rest, 

simply because I was so obsessed. 

To rise from pillow I decided to refuse 

until my phone brought me good news. 

However in spite of regular checks, 

nothing extraordinary by email or text 

No call to brighten my childish mind. 

Then I rose and drew the curtains to find 

sunshine streaming through every pane,

good news twinkling on every beam

(Please don’t judge. It’s a bit clunky but just an idea in first draft.)

Post Script: This blog was originally written representing frustration in the period 24/25 January but overnight 25/26 January the communication blockage took an unusual turn, which I cannot go into in detail.

But I’ll reveal this. In a dream I was visited by a person who has passed, who chose to communicate, a message freely given but not initially understood by me. It led me to get in touch with someone I had not contacted for some time, and have reason to believe that some good will come of this.

That’s all I can say for now. Look after yourselves and each other, and try to communicate.

6 Comments

    1. Thanks for your comment Tom. Agreed, and some communications have certainly been affected by lockdown and the pandemic in general. I also think lockdown has contributed to levels of anxiety in a way I explain in Advent Blog Post 6 published today. In that post I also try to suggest simple homegrown ways to combat blockage anxiety

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    1. Glad you enjoyed reading it Mary. This and the related Blog Post 6, which is published today, are intended to have a wider application than writers, though writers are a group likely to be affected. Hopefully today’s post will make the wider application clearer

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