For the sake of full disclosure and transparency, I’m going to admit that I have a problem.
I’ve gone on and on about working on the art of my writing, working on becoming the artist that writes because it’s what’s inside me and I’m trying to be true to myself, which means I MUST write.
I also know that there are those artists that create art and writers that write and musicians that muse and poets that poem (huh?), and they do it all with integrity! They do it for the art! They do it because, just like me, something inside of them tells them they must — nay, DEMANDS that whatever that “it” is be allowed to erupt from deep inside their souls, all for the sake of art, and manifest itself in whatever form it, again, DEMANDS to take.
Except here is where the transparency comes into play.
I’m a little hung up on this.
I write because I feel like I have to. Or at least I’m working on writing and creating because I feel like I have to. Except I ALSO do it because deep down inside my soul, living amongst the arty-farty part of myself, is a girl of about 8 years old who REALLY, REALLY, REALLY wants people to like her and REALLY, REALLY, REALLY looks for signs that they do.
This isn’t unusual. Many of us seem to have a little girl inside of us that we long ago swallowed up and silenced but who manages to eek out a little yelp, or even a yop, a la Whoville fame, just in time to burst through the atmosphere to be heard by the Sour Kangaroo and the Wickersham Brothers and all the other naysayers that live inside my head (it is one busy place, let me tell you!), and that little yelp carries with it the heavy weight of my self-esteem, the core of my creativity and all those feelings of wanting to be liked and accepted and appreciated. And over the years I’ve gotten so used to putting a great deal of stock into how that girl feels because she’s such an integral part of me — she lives in the core of my core, in the very depths of my soul, so she must really know me, right?
And instead of being this type of thinking and feeling person that intentionally takes into account what is real versus my feelings and striving to wade between the two murky shores in such a manner that I make it to my destination without taking up residence on either shoreline, I’ve been that person that took up residence on the feeling side of the shoreline. And oh, my goodness, this shoreline is a tangled web of vines and weeping willows and lonely little caterpillars waiting to be butterflies.
Had enough of the analogies? Let’s just say I’m a mess and be done with it, m’kay?
I’ve watched several of my friends have these amazing opportunities come to them via their writing and their relationships, and I haven’t had that happen for myself. I’ve watched other people’s careers take off, and I’m oh so thrilled for them. I’ve watched as their websites have taken off, their popularity grown and new friendships blossomed.
And I’ve felt the ugly bite of jealousy, of envy, of loneliness and of abject failure that I’m not experiencing the same kind of success.
And oh, my gosh, blah, blah, blah. Could I be anymore lame?
I became a bit obsessed with my blog stats, watching with delight as one day it went from 4 readers to 25 readers! And then the next day it went down to 6. And then the next day 19! And oh, yeah, I’ve made it again. And then the next day? Three. And then, hey, look! It’s 25 again! But then, oh, wait. Not so great. So and so has 10,000. My little 25 isn’t so impressive now.
And I started worrying about subscriptions and Twitter followers and whether anything I’d written had ever been retweeted or if I’d been mentioned or if anyone commented or if a post I REALLY put my heart into garnered any response at all. I felt bitter about people that used to read my blog but no longer seem to, but I still read theirs and comment often.
And honestly this is such a stupid, lame, boring and miserable road to take.
You guys are smart. You know when I’m writing for the joy of writing and sharing a funny story. You also know when I’m just writing to write. There’s a difference.
I also found I was becoming embarrassed if not every post was a masterpiece, if not every post was some candid, funny, amusing, sordid or touching story I could share with you all. And in turn it became a reflection of how boring my life is, how little I get to do, how much I want more of what life has to offer.
Only all of these feelings were completely misguided, misplaced and misinterpreted on my part. Basically? I missed the point. I didn’t just miss it by a little. I missed it by A WHOLE LOT. You guys aren’t numbers! You’re people who I really care about and who come here because you want to. You don’t have to. And my writing? It needs improvement, but it can get better, and it’s getting easier. And sometimes it’s going to suck and other times it’ll be awesome. But most of the time? It’s going to land somewhere in between. But it will ONLY be satisfying if I do what feels right, what feels good. As long as the ART is BURSTING from my BEING because I am BEING AN ARTIST for the sake of art and the creation thereof, I am learning. I am growing. I am working towards satisfaction and being my true and authentic self, or at least discovering who that true and authentic self is. I am working towards sating that little girl deep inside of me so she doesn’t have to yelp or yop or worry about what someone is thinking about her and measuring her own success with someone else’s yardstick. You never know WHERE ON EARTH that yardstick has been anyway!
Mind you, this post comes on the heels of some big movement and decisions in my life career wise, so I beg your pardon if this post is disjointed and a little out there. I’ve stepped down from my transcription website, putting faith in myself and my future, creating the space in my life for THIS success and this self discovery. I’m completely in it, and it feels really good.