Here’s the truth, if you care to know it—I am paralyzed by my own mind more often than not when it comes to this blog.
I might be spilling over with observations and realizations and hopes and stories, but when I make a move to sit down and transcribe them for you, I hit a wall so hard it leaves bruises. This is what I hear:
Are you kidding? YOU? You’re nobody! Why would you presume to have anything worth saying?
Seriously. You’ve already written 15000 variations on that theme; come back when you have something original.
If you can’t manage to post consistently, you might as well just give up. Leave the writing to the professionals.
Or, if I’m considering a gutsier topic (i.e. – anything in the category of religion, politics, cultural comparison, or Glee)…
Oh, yeah, this is gonna be good. I’m sure everyone’s just dying to hear your opinions on Controversial Hot Topic #3. Oh, and I’m equally sure you’ll handle the resulting criticism with confidence and stoic grace.
See? Instant paralysis, which is a real bitch when you consider that my sanity hinges on writing. I can’t not write. I’ve tried, even for months at a time, but I keep coming back to the truth somewhere deep in my foundations that says giving up writing will mean killing off a part of myself, and I’m unwilling to put my loved ones through that. Soul-death vs. paralysis, rock vs. hard place. How does one summon the fortitude to plow through her own mental barriers? Why does creativity have to be both lifeblood and obstacle?
Feeling out the barriers like this, surveying their shapes, letting them know they’re not as invisible as they’d like to think… I want to believe that it helps because I want to be writing here again, often, even if what I have to say is nothing original or deep or safe. I’m trying to take steps toward self-care these days—eating well, easing my legs into a healthy rhythm, sitting a few minutes in the sun after lunch—and the best mental self-care I can imagine is to get past this bruising cynicism and start creating again.
So I’m going to try, and I use the word “try” with fear and trembling; it’s both promising the improbable and admitting to a staggering amount of weakness. Regardless, I’m going to try writing regularly here again, even if it means tunneling through the barriers Tom Sawyer-style with a spoon. In the meantime, would you mind leaving me a comment or shooting me an email about your own experience with self-paralysis? I could use a little community right now as I try to get this lifeblood coursing again.