3:00 a.m. Postcard from My Broken Brain


Hello out there,

It’s me, in here.

In the house, yes, but also trapped in the attic of my brain. It’s dark. Cluttered. Crammed with broken furniture and dusty, rolled up rugs. There’s a weird smell. And I’m 95% sure a spider just scittered across my hand.

It’s 3 a.m. The only light is from my computer screen. Didn’t take the time to light my Candle of Concentration because I want to get this down. Woke up to go pee and like the meme, my brain had too many tabs open, and I had no idea where the music was coming from.

The Blog School deadlines keep whooshing past me — Modules 3, 4, 5, 6 – there they go, like honking geese in a wonky V. I accept imperfection, embrace it, but I worry about you tripping over this mess of broken furniture. Come, dear friend, behold the creaky cogs of my broken brain. And beware of the Grinch.

I’ve been hearing his grouchy voice lately, usually when R’s watching CNN, and A’s playing Animal Crossing, and M’s making a smoothie, and the cats are fighting, and the dogs are booping me with their snoots to go out, and too many tabs are open in my brain, and music’s coming from everywhere, that’s when I hear the Grinch yell “NOISE! NOISE! NOISE! NOISE!”

Sometimes I hear it even at 3:00 a.m. when everyone’s asleep and the only noise is in my brain. I don’t like the Grinch inhabiting my brain. By nature, I’m more like Cindy Lou Who.


In the old days (pre-MS,F,D&A*), when a deadline loomed for a publisher or freelance client, I’d run away for a weekend of uninterrupted peaceful solitude so I could focus. I justified my get-away because I was getting paid for writing. No one’s paying me for writing this. I wouldn’t want them to – that would rev up my anxiety even more! But the stakes are high anyway, because I want so much do this, to be a writer again, to let words go and have some of them land.

If we weren’t isolating, I’d go to the library or a café. If it weren’t freezing cold, I’d park the car near some trees or water and write there. Blah, blah, blah, I exhaust myself with complaining.

Just get your butt in the chair, Wendy. Reach into the clutter of your broken brain. Select something small – a thought, a few words. Don’t worry about the cracks. Glue them together with lacquer and gold. Make what is broken beautiful. Live your second life.

Thank you for reading, friend. For joining me in the darkness. Until next time,

Wendy xoxo

*Multiple Sclerosis, Fibromyalgia, Depression & Anxiety

“Poetically translated to “golden joinery,” Kintsugi, or Kintsukuroi, is the centuries-old Japanese art of fixing broken pottery. Rather than rejoin ceramic pieces with a camouflaged adhesive, the Kintsugi technique employs a special tree sap lacquer dusted with powdered gold, silver, or platinum. Once completed, beautiful seams of gold glint in the conspicuous cracks of ceramic wares, giving a one-of-a-kind appearance to each “repaired” piece.

This unique method celebrates each artifact’s unique history by emphasizing its fractures and breaks instead of hiding or disguising them. In fact, Kintsugi often makes the repaired piece even more beautiful than the original, revitalizing it with a new look and giving it a second life.”

~ from “Kintsugi: The Centuries-Old Art of Repairing Broken Pottery with Gold” by Kelly Richman-Abdou

6 thoughts on “3:00 a.m. Postcard from My Broken Brain

  1. Dear Cindy-Lou-Who, This is perfect! That’s absolutely a huge part of you. I love your writing here, the descriptions of the creaky attic, the furniture, the smell. And OMG that’s such a great description of what it’s like for an introvert when there’s too much auditory input from our environment – NOISE NOISE NOISE NOISE!!

    I love the encouraging voice that advises Kintsugi for the cracks. Beautiful image of making something even more beautiful from something with supposed flaws. This is a post full of the courage of making oneself visible and vulnerable. Gorgeous.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. You took me straight into the attic. I saw the geese, heard the noise, felt the inner crowding. “Select something small – a thought, a few words. Don’t worry about the cracks. Glue them together with lacquer and gold. Make what is broken beautiful. Live your second life.” A beautiful and creative call to action. Kintsugi is a perfect metaphor for your writing; how threads of gold suture what’s broken, turning broken things into found treasure.

    Liked by 1 person

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