The internet has been as much of a godsend to writers as the paintbrush has been to an artist, the invention of musical instruments to the musician. In all honesty, I believe if I were not able to write? I would be a serial killer or a drug addict.
Writing is my cocktail, my end-of-the-workday joint. It is my jogging, or yoga. It is my anti-depressant. You see, the world or rather, people, hurt my head. Insane decision making by our governments, religious and education institutions, bad science and popular trends – they have a tendency to give me a headache and some can cause a rabies like incident for me. I don’t understand people and if the truth be told, I am beyond wanting to try. It is an exercise in futility and I really can’t be bothered with useless tasks anymore. I ain’t got that much time left.
As a child, like many writers, pen and paper was my escape from a life that was painful. Not my family, but what lay outside the sanctuary of my home. Later, I escaped through illicit substances because life became even more painful as I met the monsters that walk among us. Figured out that this was a bad plan and went back to pen and paper, I haven’t looked back.
Blogging became my new method of expression. Less trees dying in the name of my “narcissism”…. Yup, I’ve been accused of indulging in narcissistic behaviour, thankfully, writing has taught me to understand that to each, his/her own. Writing permits me to examine my own opinions and see if they stand up to my own litmus tests of theory. Some do, some don’t – time is the teller.
Writing has taught me that I can be inflexible in my attitudes and I’ve come to watch the trait. Writing has taught me that I can be obsessive in my habits, likes, interests – I’ve come to modify that as well. Writing has taught me that as a human being, on this planet? I can’t change the world. I can’t even change my neighbourhood. I can, however, help someone relieve a burden. It may be a minute, even infinitesimal act in the grand scheme of things but for someone, somewhere, helping to carry a heavy grocery bag, or allowing someone to turn in front of me on the road, adds something good, something positive in an increasingly negative world.
Writing has taught me that people who appear to be hate filled, bigoted or narrow-minded, are more often than not, afraid. They don’t understand and react. Granted, there are some that are simply just hate-filled (ahem..Westboro Baptist).
Does it really matter who loves whom? There is so precious little love out there that we should all appreciate the emotion when it shows itself. In this infinite universe, does wearing a hijab or even a burqa have any lasting impact on our ability to live, breathe and survive? I have come to realize that when an individual makes a choice – whether it is to marry, wear a religious symbol or attend a house of worship – IF it is done willingly, who, on this earth, has the right to tell him/her “No.”
Blogging and writing has allowed me to see the wonder of life, that every one of us has our own, unique and incredible road to walk. We are constantly given choices on our direction, some of our choices may end up on a dead-end road but we have the option to turn around and get back on the main. Regardless of what we are told, nobody has the right or the authority to dictate which turn we take or speed at which we progress. This is our own journey and there isn’t a single person or entity that can decide our mode or direction of travel.
This is what my creative outlet has taught me. It has taught me to not sweat the small stuff. Not to care about the opinions of others. My life started the same way as every other living species on this planet and what I choose to do with this life, is my business. If I choose to rant through my keyboard as my form of expression? It is my business and if someone wishes to call it narcissism? I’m cool with that – not my business. Although, I would mention that scorn is a rather negative emotion to heap on something over which you have no control. Wasted energy. Never a good thing.