On how #NaPoWriMo2022 went, and some other small life updates

A photo of my cat, lookin' fluffy!

→ Cliquer ici pour lire le billet en français

The other day, my ballet coach caught me off-guard when she gently asked how I was coping with all the medical problems that are being shovelled my way right now. This was shortly after I’d explained why I’d be missing a fortnight’ worth of training after that day’s lesson. In addition to the endometriosis diagnosis, which I blogged about a bit earlier this winter and then again last week (sorry 'bout that, everyone! It's been on my mind lately), I’m also dealing with other — seemingly unrelated — medical issues. I’ll be in and out of the hospital for tests, procedures, and a minor surgery in the coming days.

Rationally, I know everything will be fine. Emotionally, I am pretty much the equivalent of a burnt, flickering lightbulb. Fun.

It might explain why, by the end of April, my poetry writing slowed down considerably. I am happy to announce that I still managed to write 14 solid drafts, 1 silly couplet, and 2 very messy prose-adjacent … things… which is really not bad, all things considered. As I expected, I’m now maybe a little bit sick of poetry writing — oops — but considering I usually tend to write a handful of new poems a year, it’s pretty exciting to have so many new ones all at once. The other big silver lining of the challenge: of the 16 drafts, I have 7 new poems in French! I stopped writing poetry in French on a regular basis when I first attended university in English, all the way back in 2009. It’s fun to discover that muscle still works! All in all, though, I have to admit that I’m looking forward to getting back to writing that isn’t poetry.

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You can listen to me read aloud my three favourite poems from April 2022 by clicking here! The post is currently restricted to patrons of the blog, which means you can unlock the post for 2 $ CA a month or 20 $CA a year.

One other tell-tale metric that I’m a bit worn is that I’m not reading books right now, which is pretty uncharacteristic. I have a stack of 20-something books by my desk that have been sitting there since early March. I’ve started a few of them, but every time I sit down to read, I open up a book and get completely lost in thought/frustration. I did manage to open up one of my oldest bandes déssinées a few nights ago, Le trio de l’étrange by Roger Leloup, the first Yoko Tsuno album, and read it in one sitting, so that was encouraging. Hopefully, I’ll get my reading mojo back soon!

Until I’ve gotten this round of hospital stuff done, I’ve decided to take something of a break from checking social media until at least the 11th or the 12th of May. I’m one of those people who feels ecological anxiety on top of the general sense of despair and stress that the pandemic has worsened for disabled people. I often find myself physically nauseous and dizzy while scrolling social media. It’s become an exercise in perpetual alienation.

So that’s that for a little blog update. And, well, sorry for the melodrama — I got some feedback that my last blog post on endo was depressing. When I write the above, it's true that nothing is particularly dire, but I do feel like I need a break from curveballs. I guess I’ll be able to “rest” a bit over the next few days, now that I’m taking a bit of time off from work to take care of this medical nonsense.

I hope you’ve been doing well, despite the state of the world. Take care of each other!

Gersande La Flèche

Gersande La Flèche

By day I am a writing coach & freelance English-French translator. By night (or rather by dawn because I'm an early bird) I scribble away at poetry, prose, and essays in one of my many notebooks.
MTL // Tiohtià:ke