“Mom, what’s wrong with your website?” my son asked.
I know, I haven’t posted in a while, between school and my current existential crisis I just haven’t felt inspired…
“What do you mean what’s wrong with it?” I asked back.
“It says your domain has expired.” he said.
Pulled it up and he was right. My site was gone. In its place was Go Daddy asking me if I wanted to bid on it in auction.
Cue full blown panic.
I logged into my account and sure enough, the 5-year renewal was up in March. My site went down on St. Patrick’s Day. (Where was the luck of the Irish? Is a Leprechaun showing up at my door telling me to check my old Hotmail account’s junk box too much to ask?)
My precious real estate on the internet evaporated because I didn’t update my e-mail address.
Now, you might think, gee, Heather, how popular could heathershuker.com possibly be? Seems awfully specific. Well, as long-term readers might remember, there is a photographer in England named Heather Shuker. Ms. Shuker is a rather pleasant lady whose e-mails I’ve randomly received over the years. Because of the ongoing mixup, she had mentioned that she’d like the .com domain if I were ever to give it up. (She uses heathershuker.co.uk.) Did she get it? Did she get my site?! Oh, the horror!
Well, obviously, she didn’t. I called Go Daddy, whined a lot, and they fixed it.
You get real clarity about how much you care about something when you are at risk of losing it. (Even more when you actually lose it, but, I’ve already written about that.)
And while this site might be an idle distraction for my visitors, for me, it is the embodiment of not giving up on being a writer or a potter. I’m getting older. I’m running out of time to do all the stuff I want to do. But, when I go to work, when I go to school, when I make dinner and do laundry and dishes and help my kids with homework, I can still say to myself, you might not write or throw as much as you’d like, but you still do it. You have a website and business cards so it must be true.
But, is it? If I’m not making time to write or throw can I still claim those identities? I certainly would stop calling myself a runner if I didn’t strap on my shoes at least a couple of times every week. (Although, “run” is still a strong word to describe what I do.)
I’m a firm believer in actions over words. Don’t tell me, show me. “Words are wind” as George RR Martin likes to say in Game of Thrones. (Yes, part of my problem has been sinking down that rabbit hole. Five books and you still aren't finished telling the story, George? Really?)
Well, here I am. I’ve written something. (They can’t all be winners, you guys. Sometimes, a girl just needs to show up to prove she still means it.)
Yes, I’m a writer. Yes, I’m a potter and a runner and a student and a nurse and a knitter. I’m also a mother to a boy who has my back. (Bless you, Hayden, for saving my domain!) I can’t do all those things at the same time, though. If I tried, everything would get really messy. (You know? Because of the clay? It is mad filthy, you guys.) Instead, I have to take them one at a time. I have to prioritize and negotiate and dig deep for motivation. Sometimes, showing up to work in clean scrubs is all I’ve got.
But, I know from experience, if I keep throwing those balls in the air, even if I have to pick them all back up off the ground every once in a while, it’s worth it. It’s worth the fight. It’s worth the effort. It’s worth overcoming the sometimes overwhelming feeling of why bother? to define myself by getting shit done. Excuses, forgotten plans, unrealized goals are made of useless words. Pride is made of actions.
I like to throw things.