Comfortable Discomfort and Social Media

WordPress informs me that it’s been over a year since I wrote anything for this blog. Again. I should probably pack this one up and go home, huh?

Nope. I’m keeping with it.

No revamp this time. I’m just going to dig back in and see how long I can keep it up. That’s all any project is, isn’t it?

I should admit, though, that it wasn’t just busyness or laziness that kept me away from blogging for the past year. I mean, eventually, it became a habit the way not doing anything for an extended period of time becomes a habit. (Much, much easier, I might add, than doing anything becomes a habit). But the truth is there was a lot I didn’t want to blog about in 2013.

And it wasn’t just that I didn’t want to blog about it. I didn’t want to tweet about it. I didn’t want to plaster it on my facebook wall. Some things ended up there anyway; social media’s an incredibly convenient way to disseminate information. But I didn’t reach for it the way I usually reach for platforms when there’s information I want to share.

2013 was uncomfortable.

And not for purely negative reasons, although there were plenty of bad things that happened. Last February I wrecked my car. Our fourteen-year-old dog died in April. I quit my job in July. In November, we found out my aunt had terminal cancer; she passed away just before Christmas. There have been ongoing difficulties: my parents are having some legal trouble (not their fault), my brother has had an incredibly difficult time finding a job after graduating, and my grad school experiences this round have been difficult and complicated in many respects.

But there were a number of happy occasions, too. I bought my first new car. I found another job, this time at school. My brother graduated college cum laude. My sister is finally a free woman with a job she likes (long story, but, no, she wasn’t in prison in the literal sense). I’ve placed 3/4 of my thesis stories in pretty awesome publications. Earned a bit of money from my writing. Landed two YA novels on a contest shortlist–got to go to London and meet some literary folk (more on that later, I promise). Made some friends in my grad program. Kicked ass on the GRE round two.

The thing is, serious introvert that I am, even the very happy things require time to process. To incorporate. Which is something I often do online in various formats (I mean, I am a millennial. Duh.) And with all I hadn’t said about the bad things, I couldn’t really reflect on only the good things, even I wanted to.

And I didn’t want to; although it’s uncomfortable, I place a lot of importance on thinking about everything that happens to me, even if I can’t see it in a wholly positive light. We place too much emphasis, I think, on just getting beyond the negative aspects of our lives. But it’s okay to be unhappy sometimes. Or sad. Or frustrated. Or uncomfortable. I mean, I hope it is, because it kind of seems like an inevitable part of being human.

I let myself feel all of those things. I didn’t wallow–much–I just didn’t try to convince myself to feel otherwise. I didn’t do it quite so much online. Which is also okay. But it struck me a few weeks ago, around the new year, that I really did miss blogging. And maybe it was okay–and time–to put some of this online.

And so I have completed my navel-gazing. I’m hoping to get back to blogging about writing, reading, ethics, environmentalism, activism–all the good stuff. And occasionally the personal things, too. Thanks for reading!

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