A post a long time in the making, I’d say. It’s not the be-all and end-all, but an explanation… if not just to others (because really, who is reading anymore?) then to myself.
And here goes:
–Because life’s busy and it’s fun to just live it. That’s some tiring business, let me tell you.
–Because I spend all day with other people and, when I finally get time to myself, I don’t feel like talking talking talking TALKING anymore.
–Because I don’t get excited at the prospect of rehashing what I’ve done lately for the sake of getting a blog post out of it.
–Because I think my life is really fun, and really interesting–to ME. But how fun and interesting is it to others? I’m not always sure. So of course I think of ways to make it read more fun and interesting, and then I get to thinking that it might not be all that fun and interesting… Which is silly, because things are great right now–even if sometimes they’re great in a more low-key, non-monumental way. A not truly blogworthy way, if you will. I don’t want to second-guess my life on the basis of blogworthy-ness.
–Because a lot of my life is mine to tell about, but a lot of it isn’t anymore. It’s other people’s business, even if those other people don’t care that I tell (husband) or are too little to object or approve (Miss Tiny Child).
–Because my baby is fascinating and awesome–and it’s really, really hard to write about her precisely because she’s fascinating and awesome (especially given the point directly above). If she were a snarly hyena baby, it would be a different story… a story probably worth me getting my snark on and telling.
–Because my writing mojo got replaced by a regularly recurring foggy brain some time in the near recent past. When it DOES come back to me, I just don’t have the time to write the kinds of posts or pieces that I want to write, the ones I feel proud about, the ones that I cackle through as I write them. Then I get frustrated, and then the mojo goes away. Back to square one. Argh.
–Because, for months and months, I felt guilty that I didn’t miss writing more. And now, finally, I’m OK with not missing writing more than I actually do (which is really “not much at all”).
The most telling part is that I wrote all those words up above, the meat and bones of this post, OVER TWO WEEKS AGO. Did I once in that time think “Hey, maybe I need to polish this off and hit “publish”? Nope, can’t say I have. I actually forgot this was there. That has never happened before.
It’s not that I’m upset about not writing more often, but in a way, it’s tough to get my head around what that means about my identity. I saw myself as a writer (I know, seeing it written makes me want to irrationally roll my eyes) for a long time, even before I started this blog. And then I blogged–mostly consistently–for three years. But now, I can’t quite think of myself as being a writer if I don’t actually write on a regular basis (notes to myself or others don’t count), whereas before, that wasn’t an issue.
And herein lies my problem. I feel like I can’t let go of being a writer, because it’s what I’ve mostly thought of myself as (and it’s what lots of people think of me as), regardless of what my job has been, over a whole lot of years. Can you be a writer that doesn’t write? And even if others can, can I be a writer that doesn’t write? And if so, why am I still not OK with it?
It goes back to an issue of identity. When you have a baby, your identity markers shift–not all of them, and not necessarily drastically, and not necessarily because you want them to. They just do, in subtle and shifty and wonderful and incredibly frustrating ways. Mine have gotten blurry indeed, and it’s hard to let go, or pull back, from one of the very few identity markers (“I am a writer a writer A WRITER DAGNAMIT!!”) that I actually have some control over. I just want to hang on to it for dear life because it holds what was “me” for so long.
But then, it doesn’t. I wasn’t “me” because I wrote about stuff–I was “me” because of how I saw the things I ended up writing about. That’s where this “me”–this non-static, acting and reacting, ever-changing “me”–lives. And once I can get used to seeing it that way, I can get on with the business of continuing to be me… writing (hopefully regularly again) or not.
Thank you for being patient–I’d bet you’re about a million times more patient with me than I am with myself–and coming back to read even when there wasn’t anything new on this spot. This isn’t goodbye, just an acknowledgement of the “see ya later” that was waaaay overdue.