Update and Some Announcements
Fun things ahead in December and January!
It has been a long and challenging year for me. I’m so grateful for those of you who have been with me through all of it, and also for those of you joined this community recently and have no idea what to expect. Welcome!
I took the last few weeks to rest and recover while the MLB hot stove remained lukewarm. During the playoffs in October I was only well enough to go to physical therapy for 30 minutes once a week as I tried to regain my strength and stamina after COVID-19 unexpectedly leveled me and caused me to have POTS , which now requires me to take heart failure medicine twice a day.
There’s some good news on that front, though: I’m now able to tolerate 30 minutes of PT three times a week, and I may not need my heart meds come January. My therapy is a bit humbling, as said “exercise” involves me peddling slow on a bike with no resistance for 10 minutes, then lunging down a carpeted hallway with an elastic band around my thighs for 10 minutes, then stretching for 10 to complete the triathlon. But it seems to be working,
After I got so sick back in August, I had no illusions about being able to bounce back and complete a marathon by the end of 2022. My goal was simply to be well enough to attend all the pop concerts and drag shows and sporting events I had tickets to in November and December. As someone whose workplace is often a stadium, I had taken for granted how difficult it is to access these venues when walking more than 50 feet is out of the question. But thanks to Jordan and Jose for giving me all I can handle in body therapy, I was able this month to drive to the Forum in Inglewood and climb up into the nosebleeds twice to see Harry Styles and Lizzo without incident. And both shows were wonderful and loving and fun and made me feel like I was coming back to life after so many months of feeling shitty and alone.
My body is working again, and I’m so lucky to not have any permanent damage from this devastating virus that everyone is sick of thinking about and talking about and reading about. At some point in my life, I plan to sit down and write a book of essays about all the character-building traumas I’ve flailed my way through, but not this one. If I could, I would lock the summer and fall of 2022 into a concrete box and dump it into the middle of the Pacific and speed away on a Boston Whaler and never think about any of it again—which is probably how most of you feel about the last three pandemic-ravaged years. Which is to say that we all lived it, and we all talked about it to death, and felt our feelings, and now we are ready for something else, anything else.
On that note, I’m announcing a new series of community events focused on creativity! Each Saturday in December, you can come meet me on Zoom from 10-11 AM PT for an hour of uninterrupted creative time that I’m calling The Lab. So many of you have written me asking for advice on how to be more creative, whether it’s writing a book or a screenplay or drawing or painting or writing songs. The answer is so easy, yet the hardest thing anyone struggling with a lack of creative confidence can force themselves to do: which is to actually sit in a chair and allow yourself some uninterrupted time of just doing the creative thing you want to do. Think of the Lab as a sort of group therapy where you never have to talk. You don’t even have to turn your Zoom camera on. All you have to do is log on and show up and be accountable to yourself and know there are other people doing the exact same thing at the exact same time.
If you already have a project you’re working on (or an idea for a project) you can use that hour to work on it, and consider the rest of us on the Zoom your creativity gym buddies, silently urging you on. If you want to be more creative, but you have no idea where to start, I will also offer a prompt each week to try to help get you going. We will do this on the mornings of Dec. 3, Dec. 10, Dec. 17, Dec. 24 and Dec. 31. I know that many of you will be traveling and unable to attend the holiday workshops, and that’s fine. I also know that many of you may need those hours of creativity more than usual as you navigate the holidays. It will be a place you can go and hopefully feel some community, purpose and support.
Then on Tuesday, Jan. 3, we will begin our Artist’s Way 12-week course again. It will meet on Tuesdays from 5 pm to 6 pm PT from Jan. 3 to March 21. We had 25 or so people take the course this summer and fall, and that fellowship was probably the highlight of my year. The Lab and Artist Way Zooms will be available to all paying subscribers. If you are not yet a paid subscriber, all you have to do is sign up below and you will receive separate emails with links to those Zooms.
I also want to hear from you! Please respond in the comments and let me know what you’d like to see more of, what you’d like to see less of, and what you’d like to see me write about that I haven’t already.
Thank you all again so much for your support. I’m finally starting to feel better, both physically and emotionally, after this ordeal. I hope you all are well. I love you all.
More to come.