Separation Anxiety


For those of you who have kids, you’ll know what I’m talking about.  Kids of a certain age get anxious when away from their parents.  Some parents (no names but you’ll guess who) get anxious when they’re away from their kids.  Some parents never get over this separation anxiety.

I feel the same kind of chest tightening, pulse increasing, cold sweat anxiety whenever I send one of my stories off for consideration.  Right after hitting “Send” or “Submit,” I go into something akin to a brain-freezing panic.  I instantly want the piece back, back in my safe little hard drive, safe in my arms.  I think things like, why oh why did I think that was ready to leave the nest?  Oh, the editors will have a good laugh when they read it – they’ll know it wasn’t fully cooked…

After the initial panic attack fades, I get cranky, bitchy, downright PMS-y.  I lash out at anyone who dares come near.  Inevitably, I only muster enough courage to hit “Send” or “Submit” late in the day.  Yes, I could’ve been staring at the screen all day but somehow around 3 or 4 in the afternoon, I take a deep breath and hit it.  Five minutes later, my kids come home.  Poor things.

I’ve been working very hard on my stories lately and I’ve been trying to submit more and more work for publication.  Thus, I’ve been a bit crankier than normal.  I sit and I chew my nails for an hour or two after submitting, hashing and re-hashing all of the submitted story’s weaknesses.  Luckily these attacks of separation anxiety don’t last long.

I can’t help but wonder if, after I am published on a regular basis, these separation issues will go away.  Something tells me they won’t but perhaps they will lessen in intensity.  Until then, children, come in quietly through the back door and head straight for the basement…

I will try some sort of physical exercise immediately upon hitting the “Send” button – that way, the kids will be safer, I’ll be less cranky (theoretically) and maybe I’ll even get into shape!  Off to do a zillion crunches….now!


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