For thirty-one straight days, I posted a prompt response from a romance author’s 31-day prompt challenge. It was a lot of fun. And revealing. Keeping up with each day was definitely a challenge. With work, taking care of my daughter, other day-to-day matters, and so on, I’m surprised I managed as well as I did. I say that because the month of August officially became the worst month of the year for me due to the fact I lost my brother on August 27th, 2017, my father on August 30th, 2021, and now my brother-in-law in mid-August 2022.
As I said, it was revealing. For so long, I was keeping myself down, keeping myself on the ground any time I felt good about any direction in my life. I lacked discipline. And it became a culture clash. It was a culture clash between the “millennials focusing on themselves over others first” and “military-style discipline.” Oh, yeah, I’m a former military service member. If you’re new here, enjoy that fun fact. Couple all of that with a gender identity crisis while trying to be the best father, and, well, “mother”, too and you have a recipe for a “disaster border-line elder millennial.”
Wow, that was a tangent.
How does that relate to the month of August?
You see, it was June 2009 when I left the military. I felt that the events that took place that August set the tone for the next decade. Which I will not get into in full detail here.
The problem is I have a tendency for holding myself up too long on the negative side of what we individually perceive as “life.” Doing so made my ADHD all the worse. This led to piling notebooks, incomplete projects, jumping from hobby to hobby, and the list goes on. But in July this year, I told myself I would step back and allow myself to grieve, to find some resemblance of peace with the past. Something hit me, though. I don’t know what it was but it was enough of a spark for finding a balance between enjoying what I love doing (which is writing) and making peace with the past. I felt that came in the form of the 31-day challenge.
Mariah’s 31-day prompt series, I felt, gave me that space for finding the balance I needed most in my life. It was revealing in the fact that the only thing stopping me from reaching my writing goals was me. Writing something each and every day was better than writing nothing at all. I didn’t have to spend much time mulling over each day’s prompt. And that’s big for me. Finding the confidence in my writing once again felt wonderful. I owe that to them.
Writing the final prompt was a mix of emotions. It felt bittersweet. It felt like a giant relief. But most of all I felt proud of myself. Seeing how it has been such a long time since I felt such a feeling, it felt “new” and without question.
But, I needed a break afterward.
Truth be told, it felt a lot like dialectical behavioral therapy or DBT.
It’s 9:01am now and I was supposed to start my work at 9:00am. Oops.
I don’t know how I should end this post but, uh, yeah – this was mostly about why I haven’t posted in the last two weeks.