Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Just Write It

"Life is a journey, look for the smilemarkers along the way." Man, I need to get that copywrited. That's a bumper sticker in the making. That sentence popped into my head as I was finishing my blog late last night when I could barely see to finish the post. It became the title.

I really do love writing this blog. Even though I'm a pretty good writer I tend to put off writing things that I've committed to writing until the last minute. Procrastination. I've heard that procrastinators are frustrated perfectionists who put things off to the last minute in order to give themselves permission to do a less than perfect job.

Personally, I find that I can't concentrate enough to write until I'm up against a deadline. In the case of this blog, I start it when its really time to go to bed. By the time I'm finished I can barely see the page. I also can't stop writing until the ideas stop coming, another reason why I may be afraid to start. I'm always amazed when I'm done to find that its relatively coherent.

Often I just start with whatever pops into my head and keep going. When I'm done I re-read it and realize there's usually a theme. My brain organizes things without me even realizing it.

Still trying to figure out what the theme of this blog is. Or what it has to do with food addiction and lapband surgery.

Just musing on the whole writing process and the way creativity happens. Sometimes ideas pop into my head while I'm walking. Sometimes they're inspired by events of the day. Sometimes ideas that have been percolating in my subconscious for a long time finally rise to the top. Once I start writing about it I can't stop. If I'm passionate about a subject things particularly seem to flow. I'm passionate about food addiction and its effects on me and others.

Having the self-imposed discipline of posting everyday has made me more mindful of the events of the day, the thoughts going through my head, what's important that I need to talk about that others might appreciate.

Although each of these posts is written as a stand alone piece with some references to earlier posts, they are all connected. I'm tracing the history and issues of my addiction that come up while I record the information about where I am in my lapband journey. If I tried to write all this as a pre-planned book, it would never happen. But I've posted at least 40 times. Each post could almost be a chapter in a book. I've never believed I could ever write a book, but, in essence, that's what I'm doing.

I'm also able to really be myself while I'm writing this. You pretty much know the worst about me and you read me anyway. Some of you have written me or told me that you love how I'm unselfconscious, that I've moved you to tears, that you're praying for me, that I'm funny, that I'm inspiring. Mostly, I'm trying to be honest. Life is funny and life hurts.

Everybody secretly desires to by known by someone else. To have the protective outer layers peeled away and the real person emerge where they can love and receive love not just inspite of but because of their peccadillos and insecurities. Its a real risk to put yourself out there in public. Most of us aren't too successful revealing ourselves even to our families. In fact, families can be the least safe place for that kind of revelation.

I hope that those of you who struggle with similar issues (and who really doesn't? Mine is the human condition.) find your own voice and safe people with whom you can use it.

AA's fifth step states, "Admitted to God, to ourselves, and to another human being (usually a sponsor) the exact nature of our wrongs," or maybe we should say admitted our exact nature.

If you're one of those honored with the peeled away self-revelations of another human being, be aware. You are holding something fragile and beautiful and quite perishable. Handle with care.