Goals. We all have them. Dream big or go home. Set your goals, write them down, post them in public, on your refrigerator where your family can see them, or wherever you think you might get support and see your dreams in your face every moment of every day. Whether your goals are personal, professional, inspired by someone else or something you see, make them known to the world.
Last week I had one goal. Keep my cat alive. Actually, that was a sub-goal because my true goal was to not have to tell the kids our cat had died. I wouldn’t have said that on Monday. My week started with the usual goals. Get twenty miles of walking in with at least five of those miles running, and finish a few scenes for my upcoming book. Even simpler goals would have been something like declutter a room, clean all four toilets in one day, or cut vegetables to last through the weekend. I never said my goals were glamorous. Then Tuesday happened. X-rays showed our cat was in serious trouble. We tried various things on Tuesday and into Wednesday, but we all knew to save his life, he had to be in the hospital. To add to the week, one of my daughters fell from a high play area on the school playground hurting her back. She came home early from school on Tuesday and missed school on Wednesday. By Wednesday, the cat was nearing death. He was in trouble, and I had to save him. I took him to the emergency room for treatment. They kept him overnight, treated him, and the clock still ticked for him. The next morning, the animal hospital called me to tell me he’d made it through the procedure and through the night. He was coming home. By Wednesday, I had a horrible sick headache. I refused to call it a migraine because, though I was sick and it hurt horribly, I didn’t want to give it any more power. The cat needed me. My daughter needed me. The toilets needed some attention, and no one was writing my book anymore. Monday was the only day I walked other than pacing the house or walking to and from a hospital room. Since our cat returned home, I’ve been swamped caring for him. We’ve had to keep him separated from our other cat who only hisses at him when they are near anyway. He needs four medicines twice a day. I think. At least that’s what I’m giving him. I can only hope that is correct. Our two Saint Bernard dogs are a bit put off by having to share their bedroom, my bedroom, with the cat. My little Saint, she’s little because at only 130 pounds, she’s a lot smaller than my big Saint, lost her bedroom so the cat could have a private suite in which to sleep. I guess little Violet isn’t so upset. At least I took out her bed first. Beethoven, the cat, seems to be improving. And bonus for me, the mom in the house who is allergic to cats, he’s now my personal cat. When he’s not confined, he’s in my lap, in my face, on my chest, cuddled next to me sleeping, trying to get closer to me as I sleep, purring in my face, and blocking my view from whatever else the world might have to offer me. I saved his life, and I think he knows it. To pay me pack, he’s decided to shower me in his love, dander, and fur for many years to come. My daughter’s back is feeling better. By the end of the weekend, all was right with the world again. Sure, the house is still a wreck, but seriously, with a husband, three kids, two Saint Bernards, and two cats I should lower my expectations regarding the condition of my house.
This weekend, many writers were challenged to participate in the #WalkRunWrite5K. It is simple. Walk or run at least 5K and write 5K words all in 24 hours. Simple. I walk over 5K each day. I try to do twenty miles in five days, so a normal walk/run for me would easily fit into my day. Writing 5K? Simple. And what a great excuse to catch up on what I missed last week. Only I didn’t post my goals anywhere. I didn’t tell my family. I didn’t put it up for my world to see. I didn’t ask nor did I expect support. This is what I do. I walk. I write. And when there is time, I fit everything else in. Like saving cats and cleaning house. Only last night, my daughter went to a Halloween party and broke her allergy medical ID bracelet. She needs that. It’s important. It’s vital for her to have on her wrist at all times she is away from me. I had to fix it. So I walked my 5K. And only 5K…well, maybe I went a tad over but not by much. My husband and I took the kids with us, and they don’t enjoy anything much over three miles. After our family walk, I headed to Michael’s to get supplies to fix this medical ID bracelet. I’ve never made jewelry before. I’ve always said I should. I spend about $85 a year on a new ID bracelet for my daughter. I know if I have the ID tag I should be able to make the bracelet, but having never done it, I didn’t know how. I bought some supplies and headed home to fix this bracelet. I learned a few things. I made some pretty decent guesses, but didn’t get exactly all the right materials. The smallest beads from her original bracelet didn’t fit on the wire I got. But I was prepared with new beads. No problem. The endcaps I got didn’t match the ones on the original two strand bracelets, but I improvised. I got it all together and it’s working, for now at least. While learning, I strung two more for her extra tags. It all took two hours. If I’m flowing well, that’s about the time I need for my five thousand words. Just about the time I’m ready to start writing, my daughter reminds me she needs to make a musical instrument for school. And my son is complaining of a headache. He’d evidently like dinner as well. And my middle school daughter is reminding me I’d promised to do the ombre effect on her hair this weekend. Before the school week starts. Then my other daughter wants to try it as well. Ohhhh…Kay. So here I am. Writing. Only I no longer have the groove. I no longer have the flow. My characters have given up on me this week. They’ve told me to care for my cat who is currently siting on my laptop. They’ve told me to come to bed. It’s warm in bed. It’s cozy. It’s comfy.
But I was shy about 1200 words, and needed to write something down. Even if my plot needs rescuing from a river gone wild with my week, even if my characters are sleeping on the job, I had to write something with meaning. Something that mattered. And something that helped me to meet my goal. Next time I will share with the world my goals, so I can collect support. Because as long as I am allowed to be here, life will continue to happen. And I need to adjust.