Nothing Like a Good List

Hi folks, a little update:

Wednesday, I had my first session of EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing), a treatment which is truly fascinating. I’ll be honest: I’m not sure I entirely understand it yet, but basically– “when a traumatic or distressing experience occurs, it may overwhelm normal coping mechanisms. The memory and associated stimuli are inadequately processed and stored in an isolated memory network” (Wikipedia), and the use of bilateral stimulation (moving eyes back and forth or– as my therapist uses– two small “buzzers,” one for each hand, which alternate buzzing back and forth) allows the patient and therapist to crack into that part of the memory.

I think. On a scale of 1-10 for how much of an EMDR expert I am, I rank at about negative 3.

Talked to my editor on Thursday. It was really good. We agreed on most things, and I felt ready to move forward. It was a great feeling that faded a bit since then. (It’s one thing to feel ready for the next steps; it’s an entirely other thing to actually get myself to take them.)

Friday, I spoke at the Walker Public Library in northern Minnesota. It was a blast! People from the community as well as about twenty high schoolers came to the event, where I talked about Truest, writing, publishing, and brain disorders. Somehow, I end up speaking about OCD at almost every turn. It was one of the main players in my life prior to 2008, so I guess I shouldn’t be that surprised that it would come up when I discuss my history. I’m glad for the opportunities. It feels good to have a chance to share a little about it– and also to take away the stigma of mental illness being “shameful” to discuss. I think when I can mention it in the same breath as my writing life, my day job, etc., it steals away the stigma for the listeners. At least, I hope it does. It was a really fun day, plus my mom came with for the long car ride, and we laughed so hard I almost peed my pants. She’s the best.

Saturday, I needed a break. So I took one, even though I felt sort of guilty about it. I watched a trillion episodes of Criminal Minds on Netflix and took a three-hour nap. It was beautiful, even if it set me back a little bit.

So today I needed to work. I didn’t feel like working, so I called my mom, who encouraged me to make a list. YES. GREAT IDEA. I LOVE LISTS. I’m actually sort of obsessed with them. So I made a list, a long one. And I’ve been busting my butt for hours today crossing things off. When I publish this blog post, that’ll be one more thing off my list. 🙂 I’m cruising and it feels good. I’m trying to decide if I want to wait till tomorrow to work on book brainstorming or not– I need to gauge whether I am avoiding out of fear or just strategically allowing myself more time to let ideas simmer. The latter is okay; the first is not.

How are you? I’d love to hear from you with stories about what you’ve been up to. Are you excited for summer? I am excited that UNW’s graduation is over and that we’ll have a quiet summer with tons of parking … but I’m not ready for it to be in the nineties. It got that hot a week or so ago, and I thought I was melting. Oh Minnesota, land of extremes.

7 thoughts on “Nothing Like a Good List

  1. Lists are the best.

    I remember a friend said she was interested in looking into EMDR. I’m interested to hear more about it.

    I’m teaching this summer, but I have an idea for a novel that I want to work on. So that’s exciting, especially since I haven’t written anything in AGES. We’ll see how it goes.

    Glad things are looking up!

  2. I was at our library last Friday when I ran into a former student back from college. We chatted for awhile and then she noted she was picking up some new books for the summer. I vaguely remembered her favorite genre of realistic fiction. I said you have to read Truest (we found it being featured in Hot Summer Reads) Love recommending books to people…Love it even more when I know the author…which is only in this case:) Happy Monday Jackie.

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