Blogger’s block is a real thing. And I’m in it. Man, am I in it. I want to try to explain it to you because it’s different from regular writer’s block, in that I don’t write poetry, novels, or stories for a living. Here on my blog, I try to write what brings me joy, sadness or an itch in that moment; to have a healthy mix of stories, funny things, helpful things, and serious and dear-to-my-heart issues. Lately, though, my trouble has begun to grow, and here’s why:
Unless you are living under a rock, (and if you are, I encourage you to emerge!) the political and social climate has become gut-wrenchingly difficult. The systematic division of us, as a people, is enough to make me physically ill. Facebook is littered with trolls and landmines and conflict and anger and vitriol. The news, because of this day and technological age, comes at us rapid-fire, all day, every day, even as we sleep on our phones, tablets, watches, computers and (it seems) anywhere we look. Sensationalizing the awful state of the world today has become NORMAL.
THIS MAKES ME SICK.
I feel I have so many things to say, about so many topics: the news, hatred, division, anger, fearmongering, this completely weird thing called ‘fake news’ (WHY IS THIS A THING, I MEAN REALLY, WHAT DOES THIS EVEN MEAN?!?! IT IS SUCH A MIND FUCK, IT MAKES MY BRAIN MALFUNCTION AND SHUT DOWN), not to mention all the different legislation trying to be passed, and sometimes succeeding, the constant state of upheaval in Washington where no one, it seems, is in it for the long haul. (Because who really would be, when you look at it!)
But, for some reason, it feels as though the moment I attempt to express what I have to say my eloquence fails me.
My eloquence fails me, and so I try to think of something else to write about, and then anything less than what I originally wanted to say, when my eloquence failed, feels trivial and pointless and stupid.
And my motivation dies. And I push off writing until that ever-present ‘tomorrow’.
When I think about WHY my eloquence is failing, WHY I feel as though I do not possess the words I need to formulate a complete and coherent thought on something that moves me so profoundly, WHY my thoughts and beliefs and views seem so obscure and distant and beyond expression, I am nothing short of frustrated.
Let me refer back to my original post, about what it means, to me, to be a Midwesterner. I grew up in a Midwestern household. Midwestern values were instilled in me automatically by everyone I came into contact with. With this, came the hesitance to talk about many things, for fear of offending someone, anyone, including someone 3 people in front of you in line at the grocery store. No one talked politics. No one talked social issues. No one talked religion. No one talked money. That’s just the way it was. That was considered someone’s own personal, private business.
I’m going to go out on a limb here and say that this could be the very reason I feel as though my voice on political and social issues (and religion, and money!) feels insignificant and completely underdeveloped and therefore unworthy of expression at all.
In staying polite and considerate, I have stunted the growth of my voice.
THIS MAKES ME INTENSELY SAD.
I can’t be alone in feeling this way, though. Can I? This feeling of being incapable of expressing one’s thoughts. This helplessness at attaining the words to say what you want and need to say. This de-motivation when you reach the point where it’s all just too far away to grasp.
This may even be why people, especially progressives like me, have a tendency (not ALWAYS, come on, I don’t generalize like that!) to not talk about this type of stuff, and sometimes not even vote (don’t worry, I’ve never missed an election since I turned 18) on the issues that come with these conversations.
SO WHAT DO I DO?
I’m hoping that getting this thought process out will help. I guess only time will tell, right?
SO WHAT DO WE DO?
Let’s have those conversations. Let’s give each other permission to not have the words. Let’s give each other the patience and encouragement to express the things that are swimming just out of reach in our heads and our hearts. Let’s delve into that tough stuff. Let’s really hear one another. And most importantly, let’s WORK. Let’s demand CHANGE. Let’s VOTE.