ROW80 Goals Update #6 – “Ascent of the First Peak”

I’ve done it!  Woot! Wooty woot woot woot!

Yeah, that’s right.  I completed my first goal,  and it only took three weeks!  Oh, and a LOT of writing!

I learned quite a bit, in the process.  Things about my life, like that I don’t need to spend hours each day cleaning the house,  and that both children are far more capable than I knew.  Not only are they reasonably good at pitching in (at least, when they’e in the mood, and mostly doing things they like), but they’re also pretty good, these days, at negotiating ways to make life easier for all of us.

Things about my writing, like that I can, in fact, write a lot, and have it be meaningful, and still have the time needed to be the mom and wife I want to be.

And that, in fact, the time spent in writing makes me richer, makes me more willing to share the rest of my time with my family.

Because a lot of my writing is self-examination, I feel myself opening up in new ways, filling up, deepening in understanding –  of myself, my purpose, those around me….

This challenge has been amazing for me, personally.  I am feeling strong and empowered.  I don’t just feel more like a writer, I am proving to myself, on a daily basis, that I am a writer,  already.

I’ve discovered that I’ve been hiding – sharing my words and my vision mostly with those whom I  could be  reasonably sure would not object too strenuously to them.  I’ve had violent, harsh, abusive reactions to my words (spoken and written alike), from two of my three siblings; perhaps I was afraid that, if I got that type of response from someone I did not know, it would mean that I or my words or my viewpoint was worthless.

I’ve said for years that I would write, that I fully intended to begin a freelance career, but, still, I hesitated.

There were, of course, reasons.

  • I couldn’t write regularly,  in our traveling days,  because I was too busy and too tired.
  • I couldn’t write regularly, (or submit at all, I told myself), when the children were small, because they were all-consuming in their needs.
  •  Then it was not having the type of computer that would allow me to write quickly and easily, and I didn’t have the money to get one……

Now I have, step by step and little by little, made all those excuses moot.  And I am writing –  every day.     Joyfully.  Productively.

 That’s the path for me.  Step by step.  Little by little.  Moving forward.  Chipping away at my remaining fears and sculpting a new reality for myself.  A reality where I write, and submit, and attain my goals, and look forward, and challenge myself.

And now, on to my goals, while I take a few moments to soak in the view from here……

Round of Words 80 Goals – Round 1, 2012:

I will write at least 10 essays and/ or photo essays, and post them publicly.

  • I did it!  Yesterday, when I posted “Sibling Rivalry; Sibling Love” on The Unfettered Life, I completed this goal!
  • I still have three essays nearing completion.
  • I have unmined material in notebooks and on the computer.

I am debating adding a goal involving transcribing, gathering from hard drives, and/or working on my backlog of photograph.  I have decided to wait a week or so, work toward completing the essays in progress, and then feel out which goal feels like the best fit.

I will complete all necessary homeschool reporting (2010-2011 end-of-year assessments; fourth request for approval of 2011-2012 IHIPs , and Second Quarter Reports-  all items for both children).  These will be completed and submitted as follows:

  • 2010-2011 EOY Assessments  –  January 31, 2012
  • 2011-2012 IHIP Approval Request – February 15, 2012
  • 2011-2012 Second Quarter Reports – March 1, 2012
  • I am on target with this goal……Annalise is eager to see her friends tomorrow, and the EOY Assessment Forms are all but completed (need to add the attendance hours, and print, which I will do once Jim has fallen asleep).
  • I will take the forms to co-op tomorrow, and they should be ready for mailing on Friday, completing the first portion of  this goal.
 I will submit at least one essay or photo essay apiece to Tiny Buddha and Sunday Surf.
  • The Tiny Buddha post is very nearly finished.  I need to read through one more time, and then the text will be complete.
  • I will be reviewing the guidelines sometime before Sunday, and will make whatever adjustments are necessary.
  • If I am allowed to submit my own photos, I will gather and prepare two or three pictures to add to the post, then submit (hopefully, before next Wednesday).
  • I have added some photos to the Sunday Surf post, but not otherwise worked on it.
I will complete the rough draft of my unfinished NaNoWriMo novel, Chameleon’s Dish.
  • I’ve been concentrating on finishing blogposts and reports, and reading and commenting on other blogs, over the last several days, so I have been making only modest progress toward this goal.
  • I am, at this writing, 4062 words into Chapter 16, “Blood and Breath”.
  • I have a better idea of the plot, going forward, and may, at some point in the next week or two, begin taking some rough notes for the remaining chapters.
  • I still don’t know where I am in the plot, but, as I am hoping that the action will ratchet, in increasing fits and starts, to a crescendo,  from this point, I am thinking somewhere between 25-30 chapters altogether, maybe….
I will submit at least four pieces, queries, or proposals to for-pay markets.
  • I have done a little market research for this goal, but not made any decisions as yet.
  • I have joined the Write1 Sub1 Monthly Challenge.  The challenge is to write a story or poem each month, and to submit one, as well.  I am hoping this will give me that little push I need to keep pressing forward on this goal.
I will update, keep current on a weekly basis, and add writing samples to my Facebook Writer Page, and I will  update, edit, and post to both of my regular blogs on at least a weekly basis.
  • I have done well at this goal.
  • I have posted twice here; pulled a ROW80  post from The Unfettered Life to post here, and have added challenges, and three pages.
  • I have been continuing to learn new ways of improving my blogs.
  • I have posted once to The Unfettered Life, and plan on reposting the “Sima Garo Provides” post , minus the goals updates, because it is very much an unschooling essay.
So, about the view from here….It’s exciting.  It seemed, going in, like a very challenging goal….and yet, here I am, 3 weeks later, with this goal behind me.  I wrote a lot, but it wasn’t hard.  It was, at times, very emotional, scary, and liberating.
I feel lighter, and freer, at the same time.  Focused, and purposeful, and with something that is starting to look just a little like a plan.  Not a plan like a schedule or an obligation, but more as a sense of direction, of possibility, of dawning confidence that it is, in fact, okay to dream…..
This is just the first peak, the first ascent.  Ahead and all around are other pinnacles, other vistas to view, other clouds to touch.
Am I ready?  Maybe not for the whole range, all at once, but ready to appreciate the view from here, then prepare for the next climb…..
See you all on Sunday…..
Why not check in on the other ROWers ?


  1. Janet –

    I can’t believe your comment has been sitting here nearly a year, obviously slipped into the cracks of my lists…

    Sorry that took so long!

    And, yes, stepping into my own power is more and more glorious as time goes by!

    Thanks for your visit, and your patience! =D

  2. Thank you. Yes, I do have quite a few goals – but only ones I am passionate about (or, in the case of the homeschooling paperwork, one that ensures something all of us are very, VERY passionate about…..).

    If it feels like work and not like fun, I will know I’m not doing it right!

  3. Hey, Excellent progress… always feels good when you have achieved one of your goals… although I notice you have quite a few… but keep up the good progress. 😀

  4. Thank you for sharing your journey. It sounds like, in some ways, you’re going through a similar thought process to me. The ‘actually, I can do this’ realisation. I hate that I hadn’t even realised how negative I was being but it’s amazing how liberating it can feel when you have a focus and drive to do something about what you really want to do.

    I’m glad that you’re finding the whole process rewarding and I look forward to reading up more on your work (I’ve liked your fb page too). Us writers have to stick together!

    • I am loving this. Just simply LOVING learning what I can do, now – and I know I couldn’t have done this, even a few months ago. Then, the kids were not ready. They needed me more than this would allow…..and I wasn’t ready, either. There were other, more urgent things that I was compelled to tend to before I could see myself as worthy of this self-oriented adventure.

      It’s wonderful to realize this in the company of others who are also realizing it! =D

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