First, an announcement: The group for disabled and/or neurodivergent writers is back on Facebook. It is a closed group, so you have to gain approval.
Writers and Poets with Disabilities Facebook group. "This is a group for sharing ideas, new publications, articles, and so on based expressly around being a writer who identifies as having a disability."
Each time a new year hits, everyone is awash in the euphoria of resolutions. Some are going to get fit, others working, still more are going to quit something. We all know by now that resolutions often fail. We lose our enthusiasm, our drive. It becomes too hard to keep up with.
I used to believe in resolutions. New year, new chance. It seemed like the best time to reinvent myself or alter my life. But, like many people, I never stayed the course. Unlike most people however, I would berate myself for months and make myself feel like a failure. My resolution wouldn't take into account my body and it's various eccentricities (the stamina I don't have, the pain of daily life, the shoddy immune system). It would be an impossible goal.
A lot of disabled/neurodivergent people do what I used to. We push too hard. We compare ourselves (and our accomplishments) to people who have no similarities to us other than being carbon-based lifeforms. Add being writers into the mix, with aspirations of successful, prolific careers, and things get even messier.
And then there's the resolution-shaming. Your aunt kept up her resolution to Jazzercise three times a week, so she always says she's more "committed" than you. Coworkers make snarky comments about your "latest fiasco".
In lieu of a resolution, I pick a word for the year. It could be a trait I want to pick up, or a reminder of something important. In the past, I have chosen words like "believe", "persevere", and "hope". So far, I haven't chosen my word (or short phrase). I'll keep you posted on that.
If you are set on a resolution for yourself, please be gentle. Pick something you can control, something that gives you leeway for your health or life challenges. Don't stress over an incomplete achievement, one halfway done is often better than one not tried. Celebrate your milestones (and yourselves) often.
May 2017 be amazing.