Posted by: drjamm | December 31, 2009

Mushroom 1: Troubles blogging

I felt like a mushroom with only the tippity top of my mental life available for my conscious contemplation. — jamm

Way back in November I fell away from my blog. After many months of being eagerly and intimately engaged with my blog, LIFE happened and I lost the opportunity — and sometimes even the will — to be present with my blog. Its been 8 weeks of my unplanned leave from bright heart singing, but not a day went by that I did not think about how nice it would be at my computer writing.

First, I had a couple of weeks of a moderate case of the flu (perhaps H1N1?) and then a small injury to my foot that led to some more unplanned time off from work. Caring for my family, planning my daughters birthday celebrations, plus working through my other duties as “Mama” added up to the whole month of November whirlpooling around me while I just tried to stay afloat and avoid going down the drain. As one thing lead to another, I remember marveling how, all month long, I seemed to be “over there” in my side-tracked life when I SHOULD be “right here,” in my centred life.

Then, once I was healthy, December was all “pedal-to-the-metal” to catch up at work; scramble to practice for three Winter concert performances with the choir; and Christmas plan, shop, and then finally settle in for some family holiday celebrating. Yep, that adds up to 8 weeks. But all of the above hustle and bustle is not the main reason I did not make it back to my blog. My blogging absence is more complicated than mere busy-ness or illness.

In retrospect, I see that my writing energy was diverted in my attempt to make sense of some dysfunctional dynamics in several work places and social settings. As a professional writer,  teacher, and counsellor, I write often and in many settings and for many purposes. Actually, I LOVE to write and usually meet each writing opportunity with eagerness. But this past couple of months as I tried to use my writing skills to create pieces that I hoped could remedy deep interpersonal or systemic issues, my usual writing practice ground to a halt. Furthermore, since these dysfunctional situations should have been addressed in face-to-face conversations or conferences, I was never likely to succeed in bringing about change with my writing efforts.

Because of the great sensitivity required in each circumstance, the effort of my carefully crafting every sentence was enormous while the overall progress with each memo, email, or essay was rather minimal. I felt like I was being perpetually drained of all my time and energy – caught in a swimming-in-jello conundrum. The bottom line was that, at the end of each day, and even at the end of each week, I had no room – or energy – for writing to satisfy ME and my needs. My Writing Self was all used up by my questionable writing focus.

I allowed myself to invest my writing energy where it could only produce mediocre results. Just when my physical self was run down by the flu or injury, my focus was “out there,” and I lost track of what was going on “in here.”

For the past 8 weeks, I felt like a mushroom with only the tippity top of my mental life available for my conscious contemplation. Meanwhile in my journey through the thick, gray, flu-fog and on into the firey stress-storms of November and December, the remainder of my inner life buried itself in my unconscious “underground.” My condition isn’t all bad, however. During my leave from my writing practice, I could, nevertheless, tell something important was happening inside me. I could sense that the underground parts of ME were sending out  mushroom-like mycelium tendrils; digesting poisonous thought waste; and breaking down former mental structures. Something about me dying away and rotting like a pile of compost.

What in the world has been going on inside me while I was erstwhile preoccupied with finding my right place in relationship to others’ struggles? And why was my writing practice and relationship to my blog so dramatically affected?

I have set aside this next series of blog entries to explore some of the difficult issues that have come up for me as I continue my writing journey through my bright heart singing blog. I am calling this my “mushroom” series because I plan to try and follow my own deeply embedded and growing “mycelium” network of “filaments” as I work through my own thoughts and other psychological “material” that no longer is alive-for-me and needs to be broken down into its basic vital components – manure (and I mean that in the nicest sense )– so I can make new use of my inner resources. I welcome your comments and insights on my “mushroom” series – most especially if you have had a similar unplanned absence from your own blog.
On this New Years’ Eve of 2010, may you let what is no longer alive for you decompose so it may rot and re-gift to you some vital, basic nutrients that will  feed your future dreams. Amen.

*******       bright heart singing                          credits and links             *******

Photo credits: Photos by jamm at

bright heart singing, copyright 2009 – jamm. Creative commons attribution, non-commercial sharing only (translation: feel free to quote me in context or use this entry but please always credit me for my work, thanks.)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: