IRL is real

So, something just happened to me that I’ve only ever read about: IRL.

In Real Life. Sometimes referred to as meatspace.

I’d only been blogging for about 10 minutes, and suddenly I had a case of IRL. Nothing horrible, just utterly time-consuming. And inconvenient. I had finally sorted out a publishing schedule – sort of – and had 4 posts all but finished, when bam: IRL. No matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t carve out the time needed to take those posts from all-but-finished to completely finished.

I blog for me. I don’t need a schedule; I don’t need exposure; I just like to write. And as I get older, and my memory less reliable, it’s a way of keeping track of what has taken my fancy and how my thinking has developed (or not). So it shouldn’t be an issue that I can’t get near a blog post for a month. It’s just something I do for fun, in my downtime, in the spaces of my real life.

Except that’s not quite how I feel about it. IRL has been a nuisance, interposing itself between me and my writing. Time and time again, I’ve tried to snatch a moment to post, only to have that moment evaporate. I’ve snapped at my IRL family and colleagues; I’ve postponed sleep; I’ve sighed heavily at having to perform all those tasks necessary to the continuance of real life.

So, what have I been doing? Working two jobs, check. Cleaning up after a minor disaster on the homefront, check. Supporting a friend through a family crisis, check. Holidaying, check.

Holidaying.

I think I need to reasses my priorities.

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What I’m reading: Helen Garner’s This House of Grief

Once there was a hard-working bloke who lived in a small Victorian country town with his wife and their three young sons. They battled along on his cleaner’s wage, slowly building themselves a bigger house. One day, out of the blue, his wife told him that she was no longer in love with him. She did not want to go on with the marriage. She asked him to move out. The kids would live with her, she said, and he could see them whenever he liked. She urged him to take anything he wanted from the house. The only thing she asked for, and got, was the newer of their two cars.

This House Of Grief

It’s a clever beginning. Garner frames her story as an old-fashioned country song – a typical, plaintive she-done-him-wrong song. The story of a good bloke knocked sideways when the woman he loves suddenly ends their relationship. You can see the music video in your head, and bet on how the story ends: continuing heartbreak; recovery and a new beginning; or forgiveness and reconciliation? Continue reading