Considering October: Update

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The October Challenge has gone okay so far. The first week went well except for the writing and exercise portion. I hit a major hiccough last weekend when first Jonathan, then I, got a stomach bug. Then a wisdom tooth that had been emerging became infected, which has put us in a bit of a financial tailspin, again, as I don’t have dental coverage.

I’ll admit–I allowed myself about 36 hours of “feeling my feelings”—i.e. crying, journaling, and just being. I have a tendency to label that as a ‘pity party’ or ‘being a baby’ but I put a stop that language. It is what it is, and it’s healthy, as long as moving forward is the goal. So on Tuesday I picked up what wasn’t washed away and decided to start changing things.

That’s one aspect of witch-ing that I love. It has taught me practice, it has taught me action, and that while the winter ground seems dead, it most certainly is not.

I pray to Brid and to Aphrodite. I light a candle for Hestia, honor the ancestors, greet the local spirits, and ask for advice and occasionally favors—but I don’t rely on it. I know that I am the agent of change in this equation. All of the favor in the world, all of the prayers and supplications and spells and ritual mean very little without a desire to act.

I evaluated our needs: money. I considered our situation. I’m a breastfeeding mother of a newborn, so I can’t go anywhere. That leaves working at home. What skills do I have? I can write, and I can sit in front of a computer. That leaves freelance writing, content mills and product reviews.  As of yesterday I’ve signed up for a few more promising leads. We’ll see where it goes.

I’m sure that the next few weeks of October will be about learning to fit it all in.

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Considering October

There are roughly five weeks until Hallowe’en, another six until astrological Samhain. Like I mentioned in my What I Did This Summer post, I felt like I ‘looked down’ in April and didn’t look up again until last week. And that was fine, for awhile. I basically was in a ‘fuck it all’ period of my life, with regards to everything save keeping my family alive (read: sort of fed).

But now, it’s time for that to change.

I used to love making big to-do lists and calenders, chock full of unreasonable goals and stupid expectations. I did this for school, dieting, cleaning the house, gardening, spirituality. For many years after I realized I had Failed Perfectionist syndrome (if I can’t do it perfect I’m just NOT GOING TO DO IT AT ALL WHY ARE YOU BOTHERING ME LEAVE ME ALONE) I just let those ‘disciplines’ in life happen organically. And that’s good, too. That’s where I land most of the time, and guess what? Being an adult of sound mind, most of the time, shit gets done like it needs to. I eat well, exercise moderately, clean my dishes, love my husband and kids, observe my religion.

After such a long period of ‘fuck-it-all’ I’d like to re-orient a bit. I feel like I’ve lost True North. Also–Nano starts in November. After taking last year off, I’m chomping at the bit for 30 days of literary abandon. To be successful in November, I need to dedicate some of October to preparation.

The trick is creating discipline that I’ll implement. For me, that it means it has to be intuitive, flexible and simple. But since I want this to be more intentional (groan, I hate that word, because this) it also needs to be a bit more….set apart.

So, I did come up with a calender to post on my fridge ( I need CONSTANT reminder about these type things). But it’s pretty simple. Daily devotionals, week-long health habits, easy exercise to follow, writing prompts and household chore that repeat weekly. Here’s a screenshot:

october screenshotI’m excited. I am not putting time expectations on anything except the at-least-10-minutes of activity the first few weeks. That keeps it flexible. With the chaotic nature of two young children, I’m hoping that the daily writing exercises help me make space for writing in November. A trial run, if you will.

I’ll keep you guys posted on how things go. Things are already behind—I had hoped for a morning devotional and I have 8 minutes left—but that’s the nature of these things, no?