The desire to write and express thought remains strong within me. Every day I return to press my fingertips against this keyboard. Though it would be misleading for me to say I know what I’m doing, or that I have a clear intention and an end goal when I sit down to write. The reality is that I cannot remember the last time I’ve been this confused.
I’ve written countless plans to follow, but following through feels impossible. Still, I return, because I need to. And because I find little reason to do anything else.
I read somewhere that we have a willpower reserve. Whether this is true or not, I do not know. But I feel like mine has run out. I tell myself that I need to find a way to expand its storage, that I need to increase the amount available without worry that I will run out so fast, which is usually after a few hours. Some days I feel that I have none at all. Maybe I’m better off falling back to sleep.
“Sleep is such a luxury, which I can’t afford.”— Robin Sikarwar
I try to ignore these thoughts, but in an attempt to follow through I, in a sense, collapse into a black hole, and the momentum slows as I retrace my steps back to when it all made sense. I’m left feeling lost and confused, stranded. This is when I realize that most things I write about make no sense.
I wish the opposite were true.
I plan to continue, although I often have no idea where I’m headed. I wash my face with water, in blind faith, I trust my judgment, and begin to move my feet again. And to my surprise, even here, in this strange place, the scenery remains familiar. I’m aware that these are my undoings. I could have prepared a better life for myself, instead, I traded the inevitable for short-lived fun. I have lived a life that I can no longer live. Now at 28, I feel spent, with nothing to show but a desire to live again. I have no one to blame but myself.
Perhaps, I’m addicted to confusion, because, in my cloudy judgments, I cannot see the tragedy that is my reality.
I’ve lost track of the time. Falling from distraction to distraction, subconsciously doing anything to keep myself from returning to this keyboard. A side of me wants nothing to do with this occupation. Anything else would be better. To return would mean the end of me.
Relax! Breathe. Continue.
I need to find a way to keep my composure, to remember the reason I’m here in the first place. The reason I want to write, the reason I return every day.
I want to discover who I am.
“Lost time is never found again.”— Benjamin Franklin
I’d like to think there is some self-help in what I write. At least that’s my intention. In a sense, what I try to do is share what works and what doesn’t. Perhaps I haven’t translated that well enough through my stories. But maybe you understand.
Though most of my mind is in shambles, some things are easy to explain, like the lack of recognition: I believe it has a lot to do with the absence of self-promotion. I write and publish, but rarely do I promote my work. I’ll post something here and there, but ultimately it’s never enough. That’s an area that requires rethinking and refinement. I suppose I could do so much better if I began with a motive in mind, a goal, a reason to escape mediocrity, a flame on my ass.
The good news is I’ve begun to practice accepting my imperfections. For the past couple of days, I’ve written stories that feel nice to write but make little sense. And I’m okay with that.
“Perfection of character is this: to live each day as if it were your last, without frenzy, without apathy, without pretense.”― Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
The following was written sometime last year, but I feel it fits the overall theme of this piece.
A few feet from my mattress, overlooking a quiet Florida field, wet in midnight dew, a long surge of wind thrusts against my window. Images of where it’s been in its fading journey wisp into my head: the large abandoned field behind my house, the fallen trees washed in moonlight, carriages coated in rust housing forgotten car batteries, trapped underneath what’s left of its branches.
The scene builds with roads that stretch broken from one end of the park to the other, they grow wide then thin then inflate into a cul-de-sac, surrounded by more abandoned memories and fallen giants. The wind grows and brushes harder against my window. It carries raindrops that and tap in fractured bursts.
I leave my bed and walk downstairs into a pool of empty space. I find my way to the dining room, guiding my blinded eyes with ease, like practice– I’ve done this a hundred times. A moment later, my eyes adjust. I see a light switch but ignore it and slowly descend into a dark part of the house, then the kitchen and back. I circle the place and search for something to do. A nomad with nowhere to go.
A few hours pass and the rain stops. Outside, cars howl and groan from far away. I fix my belt to lift my pants, then my shirt. The clouds are heavy black; a busy midnight blue sky.
Suddenly, I stop to think: why don’t I leave? Is this cabin fever? Here, the walls are painted in memories. The kitchen has just as much food as I think it has, most times this is enough. This place is so familiar, not like these other places, who knows what I’ll discover out there?
The temperature drops and the wind picks up and grinds against my window. Distracted, I forget what was on my mind and begin to pace again. Scattered, I question my reality, the purpose of dragonflies, the symbolism of the noble and ancient mangu.
Here’s what I’ve learned: Keep yourself busy with what matters, because too much idle time feeds on your minutes and robs you of clarity of purpose– the reason we’ve been given this life.
Basically what I’m trying to say is, I should be asleep right now.