I can’t promise how often I will, but I want to blog again. Scratch that: I don’t only want to blog: I want to write and think and share.
Years ago, everyone I knew was on LiveJournal and we wrote whole sentences about what was happening in our lives. We commented in whole sentences to let our friends know that we understood, to give advice, and occasionally, just to give the best electronic hug we could. I remember the feeling of hardly being able to wait until I could get to a computer and share something exciting or dramatic that had happened. In the time between the event actually happening and the time I would be able to sit down and create my missive to the internet, I thought about how to best present the story, I reflected back on the event, and I actually wrote about my thoughts and feelings.
It’s so much simpler to post a photo up to Instagram and show everyone how happy I am. But it’s probably not the first photo I took, because I had three chins and a wonky eye in that one. And I look a little chubby. Did I mention I’ve gained weight, because I’ve been working too much to go to the gym? And also, that’s really adding to my anxiety. I’ve also been struggling with relapsing into drinking – three times this year, for anyone keeping count. The first two times, I just went out and bought booze because the only thing that got me through the physical and mental anguish of the day was the promise that come 5 pm, I would make it so that I was wasted to where I couldn’t feel my face. The third time, I fought the urge to buy booze and made it home, but found some cooking wine and drank all of that. There’s a certain feeling – on top of the hangover – in waking up and knowing I’ve become the drunk who can’t keep booze in the house because of the temptation when I get a little to sad to cope. And the idea of going to a meeting, handing in all the chips I’ve earned, and telling everyone that I utterly failed doesn’t make me want to stay sober, it just makes me want to get drunk again.
There’s an unwritten set of rules about putting content on the internet (especially for the ladies): if you’re going to be happy, you have to post about what you’ve achieved or how you’re overcoming obstacles. You should give your advice, but it needs to work, and it has to be really easy. If you’re going to be a mess, you need to be really funny, or no one will want to know what you’re trying to contribute. And if you’re going to post an opinion, you need to have a really good one, or you’ll end up judged and possibly shamed. And in the midst of this, I’ve come to believe that the single bravest thing a person can do is live out loud.
So many times, I just re-post content (especially political content) and just write a small blurb (usually “THIS”). I do that, mostly because I agree with the content that other people are writing, but in a lot of ways, I just re-post because I’m afraid to post my own opinions and content. That is ridiculous, but entirely true. And as I’m re-posting my way into oblivion, I’m discounting my own valid thoughts, opinions, and life experiences, and putting out sound blurbs on a Smart Phone which autocorrects like I’ve been drinking, even when I haven’t. Meanwhile, I’m just existing instead of truly living, reacting instead of truly thinking, and stopping short of truly communicating.
Sometimes there are struggles from which there’s nothing to be learned other than that life is hard, and sometimes there just isn’t enough energy left from surviving to be grateful to have lived another day. But I think other people are struggling – maybe not exactly like I am, but they’re struggling, too. And maybe instead of using the Internet to shame people and share LOLCats, we can use the Internet to think and build each other up. You may say that I’m a dreamer, but I bet I’m not the only one.