A little over a week ago I hurt my knee. It was bothering me when I woke up that morning, but I thought it was just a touch of arthritis. I’m scarcely more than a fetus, of course—far too young for that! But, alas, I do suffer from it now and then.
But so what? Walk it off, I figured.
So I walked to work that day. My day job is a only a mile and a quarter from my house. And the weather was perfect! We were getting our first taste of fall. But halfway through the walk, I knew something was really wrong with my knee. It was too late to turn back, though, so I soldiered on. I made it to work, iced it—and here I am, more than a week later, still nursing it.
That’s more than a week without walking. More than a week without a trip to the gym. More than a week of fervent prayers to our gracious and good Chuck Shurley to get me moving again.
But there was a bright side, I figured. Since I had to stay off my knee, I canceled my weekend plans. Just think of all the time I could spend writing!
I didn’t write during the day on Saturday, though. But I was okay with that. It was Shabbat, after all: the Jewish Sabbath. And while I’m not shomer shabbos—a perfectly observant guardian of Shabbat—it still felt right to give my writing brain a break.
Saturday night, when Shabbat was over, I wrote a little. But Sunday—wow, I would have all day Sunday with no reason and no excuse not to write! Except that’s not what happened.
I did write Sunday night—a little more than my average, but not by much. So what happened? Why did I waste my weekend?
Well, all right, I didn’t waste my weekend. I gobbled up a book that’s been on my to-read list forever: Lamentation by C.J. Samson. I found some new Destiel fics to devour. I lavished attention on my cat. And I caught up with some friends and family.
But why couldn’t I write up a storm?
I haven’t figured out the answer yet. Maybe my Muse needed a vacation as badly as my knee did. Maybe I needed a reminder that daily word counts aren’t everything—that reading and daydreaming and meditating are just as important to a writer. On the other hand, maybe daily exercise is much more important to my writing brain than I realized.
So I’ll throw this out there to anyone else who writes or does any sort of creative work: has this ever happened to you? Have you ever been laid up, with all the time in the world to devote to your chosen craft, and yet not been able to follow through? Let me know! I’m selfishly hoping that I’m not alone in this.