Friday, April 23, 2004


Maybe there are times when something old has to die before something new can come to life.

I’ve been struggling with this blog for weeks, or to be more precise, struggling with writing anything. Ever since rather hesitantly declaring myself to be, in some way, a writer. Maybe that kind of self-acknowledgement works for some people, but it became a lead weight hung around my neck. Whereas before I could happily play with words and ideas for their own sake, safe in the belief that the gulf between what I was writing and what Writers write was so huge that any comparison was laughable, now all of a sudden I’d deliberately walked into the spotlight (albeit a very dim one) and Quality mattered.

Yes, I know, stupid way to think…

In fairness to myself though, that wasn’t the only issue inhibiting my writing. For the last three months I’ve been in counselling, initially driven by the conflict I felt between having to be one person in order to do my job, but wanting to be another person – who felt much more like the “real me” – in order to write. Counselling is a remarkable process; originally I had wanted to include what transpired there in this blog, but before long a whole host of other issues came to the surface. If I were anonymous here I might have posted more about my experiences in this process, but in the circumstances that hasn’t really been an option. The posts would have had to be so bland they would have altogether lost the hard edge of insights often painfully won. Thus the things uppermost in my mind during recent weeks haven’t been things I felt I could blog about; conversely, I had no passion for and little interest in any of the “safe” topics that occurred to me. Blogging became less and less frequent, and I became more and more detached from the whole process. And by my “standards”, the few things I was posting looked pretty dire, which drove the spiral ever downwards.

So it was that earlier this week I decided to call it a day. Maybe not to end this blog completely, but to step back and let it lie dormant for a while so that I could gain control of it again, rather than it controlling me. At the time, I couldn’t distinguish the judgemental attitude which was strangling this blog from the writing itself, so it meant pulling the plug on both. Yet Monday’s decision to let go seemed to free up something. The lead weight was gone.

I was letting go too of self-judgement in other areas, and that led to a quite remarkable and enormously encouraging experience in yesterday’s counselling session. And writing this I can’t believe it was only yesterday. It feels as though in the future I may look back on yesterday – one particular moment at about twenty to six in the evening - as one of those defining moments of life; a watershed that becomes a reference point; the beginning of a new path. And I’m afraid at the moment I’m rather hesitant about saying anything more specific than that, simply because I don’t want to fall into the same trap of creating a straightjacket for myself of impossible standards or pre-defined outcomes. But I’ll try and put some words around it at some point soon and see what comes out.

Anyway, I couldn't stay away too long any more than I could stop breathing. Having stopped writing, I started reading more blogs and realised just how much I've come to love and feel a part of this community. Thanks y'all.

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