Friday, October 29, 2010

Hickory dickory dock

I don't want to think of this as a return to blogging. I don't know yet whether this is a solo post or a beginning-- I don't want to commit to it, because the commitment won't be genuine. I do need a platform that encourages daily writing, though. If I get warmed up by blogging, I'm hoping that will lead to more work on other writing projects I seem to have a hard time opening and working on.

One of the bad things about blogging over a period of years is that you can see when you haven't made any real progress in your life. For example, I'm once again struggling with not having enough work to keep me really busy, and that leading to depression. I start to think, "If you were smarter/more creative/better at what you do, then you wouldn't be in this predicament. This is all within your control, and the fact that you are attempting to control it unsuccessfully means that you are simply not good enough. Your all is not good enough."

Writing it down is helpful. It's easier to see on paper how ridiculous and whiny and self-victimizing that train of thought is. Dereck is really good at saying, "Okay, you've done your best, so just wait for a bit and see what comes of it."

I tend to think that consequences should be immediate. It was so easy for me to get new clients when I first started consulting that I grew to expect that. I could simply ask the universe, and I would go check my email and have a new project or a new client. This Fall, I've had three promising opportunities that I've had to halt in the middle of discussions because they required relocation on my part. This has been incredibly frustrating, because there are so few opportunities to earn money here, if this community is the sole source of that income. People are facing losing employment at the university. It's not just me who is facing this. In my case, it's just a shorter contract this year that has me in a dither, worrying six months in advance about what I will be doing in April.

I am a worrier. I cannot, now that I know this situation exists, wait until March or April to worry about April. In April, I will be worrying about August. I've always been this way. You can tell me that worrying is a waste of time. Well, so is playing Bejeweled Blitz, but I still do it. You can tell me that worrying isn't good for my health. I will point to the cigarette in my hand. I am a worrier. Some people are neatniks, some people are hipsters, some people are jocks, some people are geeks. I am a worrier.

I just re-read the word worrier as "Warrior" and laughed. I wish I were a Warrior! I admire warriors. I can be inspired by them for brief glimpses. I can be a warrior for others, on their behalf. I think I can calm people and bolster their spirits genuinely and provide a groundedness and support for them that I cannot bring to myself. You would think that in order to provide strength for others that I would have some kind of perception of personal strength, but it's really quite the opposite. I'm much more likely to experience self-loathing and feelings of personal uselessness.

On the one hand, worrying is useless, but if you're always doing it, people can't accuse you of ambivalence and apathy. So, I must be afraid of those labels. If I can't support myself when I've worried about it for six months, then it isn't necessarily my fault that I have failed, it isn't necessarily something I deserve. Wow, there are some really mean and vicious voices in my head. I was just starting to wonder where *those* came from when it dawned on me.

Writing really is great. I really have to start doing more of it just for my own benefit. Blogging has really spoiled me, I think. I have a hard time writing now when I am the only audience, whether it's journaling or whether it's working on a creative writing project I may someday want to publish. I like the immediate gratification of blogging. I like having readers. I like the feedback. I tried starting a paper journal, but I write so slowly with pen and ink anymore that I lose thoughts before I can write them all down. I am an extremely fast typist, though.

So, I've created password-protected documents. But I have a hard time opening and beginning to work on it. The password makes it seemed locked down. All of these interior barriers I've let my mind set up around any work I try to do. How did this happen? When I was young, writing was as easy and necessary as breathing. Now, I feel breathless. I can't remember what it was that made writing so easy: my own room? Lots of time alone? Taking my notebook and pen down to the basement to watch television and write? It wasn't just privacy-- I was an avid journaler in college when I was surrounded by roommates and other people.

Oh yes. Silly me. My journals were subpoenaed during my divorce. If that isn't enough to shut you down as a writer and make you afraid of doing it in anything but a very ALREADY public forum, then I don't know what is.

Any suggestions on how to get over this?