Something Good Happened: How The Hell Do You Talk About That?

It’s not an accident that I am drawn to blogging– I have the perfect personality for it because I am open, I am afraid enough of people to prefer some distance (like a few states), I crave connection, and I like to write.

But, there is something I have no idea how to talk about.  It’s not sex, because believe me I have some drafts in my queue that will knock your freaking socks off.  You will see those soon enough (I am waiting for my mother-in-law to lose her internet connection for a while).

Other taboo topics haven’t scared me off either.  I can talk about religion and politics and money– I keep the focus on myself and keep the tone humorous most of the time.

And you know what? I would rather talk about absolutely anything than the good stuff that happens to me.  Seriously.  A kid pooped in the tub while my husband was gone? Done and done. I’ll tell you all about it.  The New York Times passed on my Modern Love submission?  Here’s the post.

But, sometimes, good stuff happens. To me!  Sometimes I get the full night’s sleep or receive a check in the mail or find the perfect parking spot.  But you never ever hear about it.  There’s nary a tweet on my Twitter feed that shows that positive things occur to me and around me.

But they do, and if I can’t celebrate the little things here in this space, then what makes me think I am going to be ready when the time comes to tell you all that my book is being published or I got a literary agent or I found my Ugg slippers?

Gotta start with small celebrations.  That’s what my therapist said to me years ago when I was unenthused about a date with a guy who seemed boring.  I refused to celebrate that I, shut down and people-especially-male phobic me, was going to go out on a date.  “If you can’t celebrate the little things, then how you will you be ready to celebrate an engagement or a wedding or a birth of your child?”

He kinda had a point, right?

So, I have to practice celebrating accomplishments in writing.  It’s not the Pulitzer or the National Book Award, but it has my name on it and it’s a huge honor.

Here’s a front row seat to my practice:

I am thrilled to have earned the most points in the Yeah Write contest.  You might notice that every Tuesday I link up with the Yeah Write community, which is a contest (oooh, competitive me wants in) and offers me lots of opportunities to grow as a writer and as a person (that’s  my fancy way of saying sometimes I get psycho about competitive stuff).

On the weeks when I haven’t done well on the Yeah Write grid, I have spent hours dissecting my posts or crying about being a middle child who can’t succeed in life or sitting in a dark room.  Competition is tricky for me– sometimes it’s toxic.  I have hung in there with Yeah Write because I want to learn how to be better at all of it: writing, placing well, winning, losing, writing a shitty post and seeing the world won’t end, and supporting other writers even if I am jealous of them or scared of them or just plain in awe of them.

I want the good stuff in my life to be a story worth telling.  I want to bring you something more than thisshittythingwithmykidsisdrivingmenuts.  I want good things to be interesting and worthy and a story just like all the bad things.

I gotta practice.

Starting today.

So, here’s to good writing, and good news, and good people like YOU and me.

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55 thoughts on “Something Good Happened: How The Hell Do You Talk About That?

  1. It is so much easier to be self deprecating, isn’t it? Next you should write about how to accept a compliment. Have you ever noticed that when you compliment people, and I do it too, that they make up some reason why what they did, or how they look isn’t that great? Even with their kids. We all need to learn to be better about that.

    • Yes, yes, yes. It drives me nuts in others, and then I catch my self minimzing….Oh I didn’t run that far or I didn’t do that great….it’s BS. Let’s just be great when we’re great and not minimize it.

      On Mon, Nov 12, 2012 at 10:59 AM, Outlaw Mama

  2. Hurray!! I love the Yeah Write community. I’ve been absent the past few weeks while working on other projects, but I’ll be back. I agree it’s a lot easier to talk about the bad stuff, but good things happen, too. And for the record, it’s a very well-deserved win. You’re definitely one of the Yeah Write writers that intimidates me a bit–in a good way. I always love your posts and really admire your talent.

    • I have missed you and can’t wait to rock the grid together soon. It’s good to have a big ole life though. I am still following your every move…hope that’s too creepy.

      On Mon, Nov 12, 2012 at 11:06 AM, Outlaw Mama

  3. There are lots of great writers in the Yeah Write community and you should be completely proud of yourself for winning that contest. It is so well-deserved. In the short time I’ve been reading your blog, your writing is consistently entertaining, witty and touching. So many times I’ve read one of your posts, completely related to what you were saying and thought “Oh, that’s how I meant to say it! How does she do that?” You’re one of the “just plain awe” writers for me and I would be reading every one of your posts whether you were on the grid or not. Congratulations!

    • Awww, that you. That’s wonderful to hear and also I want to take in your words and not deflect with a joke or self-deprecation. Thank you. I am grateful.

      On Mon, Nov 12, 2012 at 11:29 AM, Outlaw Mama

  4. Congratulations! I am so glad to have found Yeah Write too, and it is an honor to share the grid with you each week. You so deserve that prize celebrating your amazing talent, and I am thrilled for you that you won it.

  5. I agree with Ashley: you absolutely deserve this. I was happy when I saw you got it, because you are a VERY GOOD WRITER. (I’m sure you know this, but it might be nice to hear anyway.) (Not that I’m like God of deciding what’s good writing… but I AM a bit of a snob and I love your blog.)

  6. Congratulations! I am thrilled for you and completely relate to how hard it is to take in and talk about good things happening, without feeling like I’m bragging or need to minimize so other people aren’t uncomfortable. Here’s to you, your witty, engaging, brilliant writing, and more good to follow!

    Now, most important question: do you keep the award or donate it? That decision alone would warrant a one-on-one marathon session with my therapist! 😉

  7. Way to go, Mama! I personally have no idea if you deserve the award or not. But then again, I’m not a voter. And I keep reading this stuff every day. Apparently I like it.

    And for what it’s worth, any time you want to write about the good news in your life, try gratitude. It’s the greatest topic in the world. O know it has made me a beter man to become grateful for what I have. It really makes me not sweat the stuff I don’t have and makes me more aware of running out of coffee or toothpaste before it’s gone like it always was.

    I also remember reading that Oprah said the most powerful ting she ever did was to start a gratitude journal. Now I am not a person who thinks the sun rises and sets on Oprah, after all I am a man, but she seems to be pretty successful.

    I love you and look forward to hearing about lots more good news. Not All, just more. I’d miss the whining.

  8. This is awesome! You deserve to celebrate 🙂 and double wow for having choosen to donate to a worthy cause.

    Your blog is a daily stop for me and even though i haven’t seen you in years (ok maybe decades…sigh) I am transpotered back to St. Rita. I remember being in creative writing together and you wrote a story about two best friends who shared the love of the feel of paper when you write on both sides. The teacher commented on how that was a great way to draw readers in as we could visualize that feeling. I always expected you to be a great writer and often thought back to that moment in class when I struggled to wrap my words around something. I am glad I found your blog 🙂

    Congrats!!

  9. Great post. The idea of only writing about things that don’t fall in the “good stuff that happens to you” bucket. It totally resonates with me, and if my blog had any sort of theme or purpose, would say it fell in that genre as well.

    I learned about Yeah Write from you (too chicken “ess atch eye tee” to do it), and definitely love that your work is being recognized there. (I’ll do what I can from my end to keep that happening and just live vicariously through you.) Here’s to writing about the celebrations and victories in life. Well, and the sinkers and floaters in the bath and lurid sex stories. Love ’em all. Kudos to you. 🙂

    • It’s everything inside me not to do a sales pitch to get you to join the Yeah Write fray. But alas I won’t. Because that would be annoying. But I wish you would.

      Here’s to lurid turds!

  10. You rock. I first read this on the plane home and didn’t even know what that meant. Then I clicked over the Yeah Write. Congratulations – such a well-deserved win!

  11. Christie, you absolutely deserved that win, lady! Your writing is so darn consistent (a quality that leaves me more than a little jealous) and the things you write about resonate with many, including me (always).

    I’m not generally a competitive person — I could give a flip about athletic pursuits and the reason I’d never make it as a professional actress is that in the end, I don’t care enough about getting a role to sacrifice myself or my values. But when I hit submit at Yeah Write, I’m a prizefighter shadowboxing in my corner until the vote is called. And there are weeks when I get to the ring and know I’m outclassed and weeks when I get there and feel that I’m gonna hang in all 12 rounds.

    It’s a conundrum because I see certain avatars hit the grid and think, “Aww, man… I’m out.” but I learn so very much from those same entries as they beat me to a pulp. But I’m always glad if it is your entry pummeling me…

    • I totally agree with all you said. There are some Avis that are so good I want to surrender on site. They make me better. You, dear, make me better. Thank you for the kind words.

  12. I don’t know about you, but for me I think it’s a fear that I might seem like I’m bragging. I was pretty smart in school, and this did NOT win me any popularity contests. I learned in elementary school to hide how smart I was. So now, I post on Facebook all my parenting screw-ups, because if I post the awesome stuff that happens to me maybe people won’t like me. I need to appear to be average.

    That downer notwithstanding, congratulations on the award!

  13. you’re the best outlawmama. a well deserved win. 🙂 and i’m totally with you on talking about good things… i generally feel like… it’s a little boring and p.s. no one cares, but then i read your post and can see that i am wrong. your good stuff is good stuff. keep it coming.

  14. I don’t really write about the good stuff either. I do much more of what some people refer to as “bitching.”

    You are awesome. I’m so glad you won Yeah Write. I love reading your posts, you inspire me to be a better writer.

  15. Here’s to WINNING! Charlie Sheen would be proud. Ha!!!! Seriously, congratulations!!!!! You, your writing, your vast array of blog topics are truly amazing. I love you. Thank you for leading the way to sharing the good and making room for more. Love and believe in karma. Bravo!!!!! xo

  16. Boy, I can relate. Congratulations on winning that card! It’s funny that you talk about envying other writers, because I am quite sure you are one who is envied herself. I know I envy you! You are a fantastic writer!

  17. Congratulations! A well deserved win and looking forward to more good stuff!

    P.S. The New York Times passed on my Modern Love submission too, they don’t know what they’re missing, huh?

  18. I first came to know your blog through Yeah Write, so I am just thrilled for you! 🙂 You totally deserve it, and I absolutely adore your writing. Celebrate the good sister!-Ashley

  19. Congratulations, you! Very VERY well-deserved. The topic of this post makes me laugh. A couple of months ago my mom told me that she really enjoys my blog but maybe I need to let people know that more bad stuff happens in my life so they can relate to me more. Trust me, life ain’t perfect that is for damn sure, it just makes me laugh that we tend to cover opposite ends of the spectrum when we post. I think it’s some sort of yin/yang shit or something. Anyway, good job.

  20. Big congrats…both on your award and celebrating it! I think you are a fantastic writer and an even better person. Acknowledging success is much harder than it should be! Keep practicing and I’ll take notes.

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