Sunday, July 25, 2010


Sometimes in the mornings, on those rare days when commitments aren't calling, I love to lie in bed for a long time after I wake up. I'm talking up to an hour. I know - who can justify that? But my body feels so warm with the covers bunched around me. I just soak in the experience. My thoughts can float around, without having to fit into time frames or bank balances.
I have always called this special morning retreat of mine "mulching". And I suppose in gardening terms, it very much mimics mulch, a protective cover placed over the soil. Mulch retains moisture, reduces erosion, suppresses weed growth and seed germination, and provides nutrients as it decays.
My writing life can go into a mulching stage. Right now, I am working two jobs to make ends meet. My husband's real estate career has kept him scrambling,with very little payout for tremendous effort. I am raising my own wondrous nine year old girl, but this summer I have taken in my husband's granddaughter, who got in a little trouble with the law. My mother's husband died, and she lives in an assisted living facility in town - with a case a dementia. Guess who is her lifeline? I also am a caretaker for my brother, who is in the late stages of muscular dystrophy.
So, I am not writing much these days. But I know I am soaking up experience, which is going into my soil. I am retaining fertile day to day memories, which are giving me rich nutrients as they unfold and break down. Who knows if the bills will be paid this month, if my granddaughter can stay out of jail, when my mother won't remember me any more, and my brother's body fails?
In the meantime, I'm luxuriating in the morning whenever I get a chance. These experiences need time to soak into my consciousness before they are called upon to produce. There's plenty of mulch in my life. It's all under the covers.


Marilyn Meredith a.k.a. F. M. Meredith said...

Oh, my goodness, you do have so much on your plate! Wow! We've raised grandkids (3) and now have an adult grandson living with us, took care of my mom for a many years, and for 20 plus years we cared for six women with developmental disabilities in our home--so I know exactly what you're talking about.

Good blog.


Carol crigger said...

Lovely blogpost, Elaine, and I wish you the best.


beverly lauderdale said...

As one who "enjoys" a rather similar life, I can completely sympathize with you, as well as extend congratulations on your positive attitude. All the times that we can't write/market, we can benefit from storing myriad experiences, and that's very very necessary. All best.


Kit Sloane said...

A beautifully written post on a difficult subject. Thanks for sharing it, Elaine.


WS Gager said...

Great analogy! I've been giving myself a mental hard time lately with not getting more writing and marketing done but there are so many other things that require my attention. I'm making an appointment to write and surprisingly it is at the same time of the morning when you mulch. So far it is working. Best of luck to you. Looking forward to more of your writing!
W.S. Gager