this changes everything

When I found this blog, on accident, on a day that I had already been thinking a lot about blogging and how I wanted to start doing it, I cried.

At first I just teared up because of the nerve that some of the things she was writing struck – how easily she seemed to be able to say a lot of the things I’ve wanted to say but have been too afraid to. I kept reading, getting more and more into it as I found more and more I could relate to. I read her “how to guides,” and I just fucking wept. It seems like these days I cry at the drop of a hat, something I’m acutely embarrassed of because, if you know me at all, you know that I’m not much of a weepy touchy feely emotiony kind of person…usually. But something about reading this chick’s blog about the typical struggles of a twenty-something girl trying to define herself and understand what it means to look for love and feel fulfilled in life just really opened the floodgates for me.

And for once, it was a good kind of cry. It was the kind of cry that you have when you feel deeply connected to someone in a way you didn’t think was possible. I don’t know this chick, and probably never will, beyond reading her hilarious and soul-bearing blog entries. But it is an indescribable comfort to know that someone else is struggling with the same shit I’m struggling with. That there’s someone else out there who has struggled with what it means to be a woman, to fall in love, to pursue your dreams, to do something worth doing. Someone who wants to write, but knows what it feels like to be scared to do what you want the most, someone who has goals for herself even if she isn’t sure exactly what they are, someone who isn’t afraid to admit that despite her inherent disdain for the cliché nature of it all, there’s nothing more crippling than heartbreak and all the reevaluating your life and questioning yourself and what it all means that comes with it.

As a twenty-something recent college graduate who has no idea what the fuck is going on in my life or how I am ever supposed to survive in “the real world,” I found massive inspiration in Nicole’s blog because she knows what this feels like, and she’s not afraid to write about it. And that’s a huge comfort. Because as much as I know that I am surrounded by people who care about me and who experience similar daily struggles, it is still really easy to feel completely alone in this world, especially when the one person I’ve spent all my efforts lately trying to be with is far away and inaccessible, both literally and figuratively.

The problem for me, with writing, is that I often find myself exhausted trying to get something out, writing and writing and losing sight of the point before I reach it. I get frustrated with my own tendency to ramble, with my insecurities about putting myself out there in my writing, and with the silly expectations I have for my own writing – for the underlying meaning or message or whatever the fuck is supposed to be the point of writing. But the point of writing, really, is that it’s just something to do, like everything else we do in life. It can be therapeutic – sometimes it’s fun, sometimes it’s miserable and painful, sometimes it’s impossible, and sometimes it’s necessary. Right now, I’m at a point in my life where it feels sort of necessary, if only because it’s something I’ve always wanted to do. And now that I’ve graduated college, I’m supposed to be pursuing my dreams and goals and stuff, right?

I’ve been tossing around the idea of starting a blog all summer, and haven’t done it yet because of a laundry list of excuses:

– I don’t know if I could find enough stuff to write about on a regular basis

– I don’t know if I could keep it interesting

– I don’t know if I could handle the inevitable criticism from people who will think I’m a hack or that I’m being self-righteous thinking that anyone actually gives a shit about whatever nonsense I’d put in a blog

– I don’t have time, because I’m supposed to be looking for a better job, and volunteering in my spare time, and reading all the books that I bought at the Memorial Day Sale at Half Priced books when I was supposed to be saving money because I didn’t have (and still don’t, really, have) a decent job

– I don’t want to get any more addicted to the internet than I already am

– I don’t want my ex boyfriend to think that I’m starting the blog just to spite him because I found his Fictionaut profile where he posted sad poetry about how he’s depressed and heartbroken

– I don’t know if I’d be able to keep myself from constantly dwelling on the fact that I’m severely depressed and heartbroken

– I don’t know if I can write the kind of blog I’d want to write without completely destroying my own credibility in the process by writing about things that “potential employers” will find inappropriate, or totally narking on myself and my friends by writing about things we did in college or still do in “the real world” that are socially unacceptable, morally reprehensible, or just plain illegal

– I am scared of making myself vulnerable to people, which is a huge part of the risk of publishing your writing anywhere, especially on the internet where it is unlimitedly accessible.

But fuck it. Since I just graduated, and I am working a mediocre job, living in a mediocre town where I have – count ‘em, TWO friends – and I have no feasible way to pursue any of my dreams or goals right now (especially since I’m being forced to reevaluate what those dreams and goals even are, and if they are even really mine), I can at least do this.

Because, as Mary Schmich once wrote in a column in the Chicago Tribune (that is often mistakenly attributed to Kurt Vonnegut), I believe you should, in addition to wearing sunscreen, “do one thing every day that scares you.” As impossible as it is for me to actually live by that piece of advice, I think it’s a pretty good piece of advice to at least TRY to live by, as do I think are all of the pieces of advice in Mary Schmich’s column, which is more famously known as the “song” by Baz Luhrman called Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen).

So, in conclusion, this blog will be my attempt to keep myself from drowning in my sorrows by rerouting the energy I’ve spent wallowing in heartbreak, regret, and worry about the future and about money and about life fulfillment and about all the things twenty-something people worry about to instead be used to attempt to create something sort of worthwhile, that might inspire someone else or that will at least keep me busy and feeling semi-productive as I float through the abyss that is “the real world,” trying to share tidbits of whatever strikes my fancy with whoever is bored enough and similarly lost enough in the abyss to actually read this blog.

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3 thoughts on “this changes everything

  1. It’s good advice, this doing things that scare you.

    I think this is a good idea…blogging has certainly made me a better writer/thinker, and helped me work through a bunch of crazy stuff. Who cares if those other pesky emotions get in the way of what you thought you were trying to say? Thats the fucking point. I think.

    Write On.

    Matt

  2. Pingback: what’s the deal? « lynsey's blog

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