Heading back toward normal

This is my first Writing Wednesday post in quite a while. Sorry. It’s been a tough couple of weeks over here. Normal routine went right out the window with Dominic’s fall down the stairs and it hasn’t returned yet.

It’s not just that, though, my ability to focus and my desire to write seem to have been just as abruptly displaced and they haven’t really returned yet either. In particular, I have no desire to write in detail about the day of the accident – even thinking about that day still makes me feel sick.


Many of you have written wanting to know how Dominic is, and a couple have even inquired after book baby. So as I’m inching back toward trying to write something more demanding, here is an update on both of the babies.

Baby in cast: Dominic seems to be doing better. He veers between ferociously grumpy and ferociously cheerful on a minute-by-minute basis, but he’s off pain medication and he’s moving that leg more – trying to hoist it up in the air, and sometimes succeeding. Of course, then it comes crashing down again and hits the floor. I’ve seen him do this more than once (it makes me wince every time) so either cause-and-effect hasn’t really kicked in yet or his leg is feeling much better.

Only twelve more days until we travel back to Bangkok to (hopefully) have the cast removed. My parents also arrive here for a visit on Thursday so I’ll have more grandparent hands on deck to help with baby entertainment soon.

Oh, and if you’re new to this blog and you’re wondering why on earth Dominic’s cast is decorated the way that it is, read this. T’is the month of patience.

Baby in press: Plans for Love At The Speed Of Email are moving forward. The manuscript is finished and I should even have a cover within a month, which is a very fun prospect!! I’ve received some overwhelmingly lovely endorsements about the book from other authors that I’m excited to share with you in time, my website and blog will be getting a total facelift, and I’m tentatively starting to plan for a release about mid-April.

And speaking of books: A great friend of mine, Nicole Baart, has her next book releasing today: Far From Here. She’s running a neat launch-day challenge (A Celebrate Books Party) and will be donating books to an orphanage in Liberia based on how high the Amazon ranking gets today. I bought my copy on kindle this morning (and here, please pause for a melodious ode to kindle and nook and all other e-readers that jump oceans and cross borders in the blink of an eye). I love Nicole’s writing. She’s a natural poet and a graceful novelist and I can’t wait to read Far From Here. Happy book launch day, Nicole!

And speaking of writing: A weird thing happened last night: I had a post go viral on facebook for the first time. Not viral as-in the Influenza pandemic of 1914-1918, more like viral as in the cold that swept through this house last week, but it was still a bizarre thing to come home from dinner and find that while I’d been out this post about things that had surprised me about motherhood had been shared dozens of times by complete strangers and scores of people were flooding to my blog. More on that topic soon.

So, I’m curious.

Do you all have any thoughts on reigniting that creative spark and getting back on track with your work after hitting a major speed-bump in life?

And how has writing (or other creative pursuits) helped you during times of great stress?

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13 responses to “Heading back toward normal

  1. I started blogging to try to jumpstart my writing. I had been doing a lot of writing the last couple of years, but the stress this school year seems to have been too much and it has blocked my creativity. So far the blog has help some! I like what I’ve seen of your blog and will be following.

    • Thank you. Yes, it’s funny, I normally find blogging a huge stress relief and mood booster, but this last two weeks has taught me that there are some events that writing doesn’t seem to help – at least, not initially. Down the track it might.

  2. Hi Lisa, Funny you should ask the question about ‘reigniting’ a spark as I’ve recently discovered your blog and finding it a motivating read as I am attempting to go back to work in the field of international development after a ‘speed-bump’ of motherhood to twins. It is also wonderful to connect with another mother. I’m happy for you that Dominic is showing signs of doing better. I have been amazed at how resilient kids are and how quickly they’re able to heal. It’s a great sign that Dominic is able and bounce his wounded leg on the floor without indications of pain. I always worry about my kids until my husband reminds me that the only one displaying signs of distress is me! Wishing him his caste off at his next doctor’s visit and you the inspiration to get back on track.

    • Twins!! I used to think having twins would be fun. Now whenever I think of having twins I get that wide-eyed shocked and frozen-with-fear look that rabbits on country roads have when you come upon them unexpectedly at night in a car. I’m in awe of anyone who parents twins. I just read your blog entry over on wordpress and you have made my morning. So glad you’ve been enjoying the blog, and looking forward to hearing more about your upcoming move to Laos.

  3. I’m glad Dominic is doing well. I love the picture with the open mouthed smile. I have to smile back.

    An arsonist randomly burned my house down a year and a half ago. That’s strange to read, I know. I’ve found it even stranger to live.

    We were all home and in bed and escaped with the clothes on our backs. I didn’t understand trauma then and I wouldn’t for some time. It took us a while to find a good therapist so the entire time my husband and I were dealing with bureaucracy, insurance and the builder not to mention the normal demands of raising three kids, it was under the influence of PTSD.

    The fire was a severe mercy in that it caused us to address some of the traumatic experiences we had had before the fire. For me, one was the very difficult birth of our firstborn, our son, as well as the stressful experiences surrounding a surgery he had when he was three where there were complications that caused a rushed drive across the state where we feared for his life. He was fine, as soon as he was released, I was a trifle twitchy ever after, until trauma therapy helped everything.

    Also, when you are dealing with something so all encompassing as a child in the hospital and his recovery it feels like someone has been hitting you in the head with a shovel every day. At least that’s how it was for me after Christopher’s surgery and as we rebuilt after the fire.

    All that to say, I’m glad you’re back writing and understand why you couldn’t before. I hope you will be gracious to yourself – always – but especially as things ease and your parents are here.

    • Hey there. Yes, I’ve been tracking with some of your story about the fire. What a… wow. So hard. I was glad to recently see you were back in your own/new house. Good word you use there to describe the reactivity that comes after something so hard – twitchy. I find myself very twitchy around Dominic’s cries at the moment, as well as on our stairs. We’re moving house (not just because of the accident but it’s contributed).

  4. Rebuilding after the fire, has been one of our harder gigs, but honestly, raising our son with his multiplicity of challenges has been the marathon of our life.

    You’ve expended a lot of adrenaline lately, and you were already tired. The problem with a situation like yours is that Dominic’s needs are even greater right now. When he fell someone fired a shot in a race, that you are still running.

    It’s so easy to minimize our experiences and you’re going to need to remind yourself that this was an ordeal and treat yourself the way you would treat a friend in this circumstance.

    Regarding the writing, I completely understand the therapy it provides for some situations and being stuck about others.

    My 9 year-old daughter has some thoughts about writing and fear on my blog today.

    • Thanks Alison. I like that phrase the marathon of our life (though don’t like the circumstances that have led to the long run). And, Eden sounds like a wise writer in the making. Yes, it’s been an ordeal. I’ve caught up on some extra sleep this weekend though and am just starting to feel a little more normal.

  5. Lisa …love the blog today (as always) and the thoughtful, supportive comments posted renew one’s perspective and thoughts on resiliency
    certainly. What a whirlwind of stress you have experienced of late…
    I am in total amazement that you are also in the process of a new book being published and all that entails in your ultra full life! Bravo to you.
    Perhaps the cold is due to all the stress you and your lovely little family have endured recently…so with your parents en route to Laos….hope that provides some time to nourish yourself…grieve this experience even and cherish those ferocious smiles amidst Dom’s other expressions!
    Quick healing of all kinds to each of you.
    I have no good reasons not to be writing more…so not the best to offer comment on the creative inspiration process of late! 🙂 We are selling the condo ..moving to France (we so hope…seems to be in the stars now at last) for at least 6 months initially…I am developing and expanding on my biz’s. Pales when compared to all you get done on a daily basis somehow. Hugs and peace…a period of calm…and good health ahead to you.

    • Moving to France – how exciting! Yes, it’s lovely to have my parents in town. Dominic is going through a phase where he doesn’t want us out of sight, so I can’t dump him on them, but it’s just lovely to have their company during the work days.

  6. Poor baby and poor mama! I know that this has had to be tough on both of you. I will keep you in my prayers!

    What usually helps me bounce back after a time where I have been off of my routine, is to sit down and do a little mind mapping. Sometimes when things have been chaotic, my mind is all over the place. I like to just get away to somewhere quiet, take a huge sheet of white paper, and start writing all over it with a sharpie. Get everything out of my head. Once it’s all out, I can look at everything and start organizing my thoughts into the appropriate area of my life.

    It’s a little like goal planning, but more like a personal evaluation that I have to do every couple of months to clear my head and get back on track. I wrote a little about it here.


    Best wishes for your family and your upcoming book!


    • Thanks, Amanda. I find planning helpful too, often. I’ve recently started using excel to organize my to-do lists. I find I have to switch planning strategies every couple of months to keep it feeling helpful and fresh.

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