I don’t write anymore. I mean really write, not just the occasional blog post. I can’t even remember when I stopped. There was a time when you would struggle to get me to stop writing, because I loved to just write. I even started 2 books, 35,000 words in each, but my passion for them faded into nothingness. I’d spend time just trying to come up with a more elegant way to phrase something, or to find a word that sounded so much classier.
I suppose hitting 18 and finding the real world knocking at my door had something to do with it. Real life isn’t fun; there’s responsibility and all of that. You go from one minute (if you’re lucky like me) having everything you need provided for you, to having to figure out finances, housework and what the hell you want to do with your life.
Most people have some kind of idea what they want to do when they’re a kid. I didn’t. I was happy to go through life naïvely doing what made me happy in that moment. And I think I’m glad I did. At least I was happy then. I enjoyed most of my childhood. I drew, I wrote, I improvised on the piano. My creativity was completely unbound by things we adults worry about.
So what do adults worry about? Making fools of ourselves for starters. Or that no one will be interested. At least, that’s how I’ve become. Nothing is done without motivation, without reason. Unless I can see “the point” to something, I don’t do it.
“The point” seems to vary with mood. On my darkest days, I don’t see the point in going on living. I consider it a good day if the only things I don’t see the point in doing are creative things.
December 2014, for some reason I saw the point in learning to needle felt. The point was that it looked fun. I was really in to it for several months. My only goal was to create whatever popped in to my head. But then my mind started to need a better reason to go on with it. I decided to add my needle felted items to my Etsy shop. Why not, I thought, they’re cute, surely they will sell!
But then they didn’t sell. At least, not as well as I had dreamt. Doubts started to creep in. Whenever I think of something I might like to make, all I can think is it won’t be good enough, it won’t sell, so what is the point.
I haven’t needle felted anything since April. I haven’t drawn in so long I can’t remember. I haven’t found the cable for our digital piano since we moved in October, I’ve not even looked. Because, what’s the point?
I want to overcome this. I want to do things for the joy of it again. But how?
I’ve decided that, despite the stigma that mental health issues have, despite the fact if ever I feel ok to work again this may be found by a potential employer and count against me, despite all of that I need to post this, for me. To hold myself to account.
I know what the problem is. I just need to work out how to fix it. And there is a point in that. The point is, that I want to.