Hey, look! I’m back!
If you have been around for a while, you know that I take unscheduled breaks from time to time. Part of the reason for these breaks is the nature of my creative process. Part is the fact that my four children come before my writing, and children have irregular needs. And, part comes directly from what I have chosen to focus on in this blog.
The posts that seem to resonate most with my readers blend theories about writing and creativity with reflections on my personal journey. In writing these posts, there is an element of self-disclosure, and often related self-discovery, but also an element of analysis.
Sometimes, I am so busy living my inner transformations that I have no time to reflect upon my recent experience in a way that might be meaningful for my readers. And, when there is a lot of transformation going on, I can be so deep in trying to understand what I am going through that I find I cannot write meaningfully about anything other than my current experience.
During those periods, I often find myself struggling for cohesiveness in my writing and my blog goes dark for a time while I go through whatever life experience I am going through.
There is big stuff going on with me right now and I don’t have a handle on it.
Pushing myself deep into my emotions and imagination to improve my novel is awakening feelings and ambitions that have been suppressed for decades. I feel a need to honour these awakenings, but determining how to do that in the context of my current life (as opposed to the life I was living when I suppressed the dreams) is challenging.
At the same time, our new house is calling out to be transformed into a home that truly reflects who we are as a family. It is a unique house, perfect for a nonconformist family – and we are all nonconformists in this family. I speaks to me, “make me yours,” and I find myself wondering which aspects of me and of us should be reflected in the decor, furniture, use of rooms, etc.
I have been hiding in plain sight for years, acting like a pseudo-normal suburbanite, and delving deeper into my writing, choosing a house that reflects my unwillingness to look and act like my neighbours, and writing about giftedness for An Intense Life have all pushed me into an existential quandary.
Who am I?
Once upon a time, I knew I was in training to be an eccentric old lady. I think I am back in training.
But, I have been feeling adrift, without anchor, unable to encapsulate any of this experience in blog posts.
When I read Suzannah Windsor Freeman’s post Don’t Quit! Help for Burnt Out Bloggers on Write It Sideways today, I knew I had to write something about what I have been going through. I don’t want to disappear.
But, I can’t. Not clearly.
All of my past identities are vying for attention: artist, activist, intellectual, parent, wife, home-maker, preacher, existential philosopher, lawyer, biopsychology student, writer, actor, director. A desire to dream big and change the world has been awakened and is raging through me without direction.
My battles against petty fears have given me courage. My struggles with writing have given my sources of inspiration hope.
I feel like I’m on the verge of something, but I don’t want to jump too soon. I need to let these stirrings grow and coalesce without forcing them into an intellectually selected box.
There are passions rising within me. They need channeling and I have never yet succeeded in channeling them into productive projects that satisfy the big dreams.
I have been through periods of positive disintegration before. I am familiar with the feeling of not knowing who I am becoming – of my emotions and cognitive self-understanding trying to rearrange themselves in a more effective manner.
I know that my tendency is to force a solution that only accommodates some of the crucial elements of my personality. Being adrift in all one’s potential is scary. Making meaning from so much richness is not easy.
I will try to keep blogging as my inner life reorganizes itself, but I expect that all of my theories will be tentative and all of my understandings limited for some time.
I’m okay with that.
I hope you are, too.
If these words resonate with you in any way, I would love to hear about your experience or get any advice.