I didn't start this journey to make an income off of art or writing.
And as much as I'd love to believe my motivation was to help others with what I do, saying so would be a lie.
The truth is I began this path for a very selfish reason.
Everything that mattered to me had collapsed. I looked at the wreckage and saw that I had managed to once again push away anything good that had tried to help me and I got angry.
Really, really angry.
I was tired of sitting in this same broken spot. I was tired of feeling powerless, weak, and miserable. I'd spent 20 years letting this cloud of darkness surround me so deeply that even when the sun came out I refused to open my eyes and see it.
I didn't start this journey to be a hero or help anyone. I started it because I was tired of sitting in the center of my own pain and I was angry enough to get up and try to move out of it.
Don't get me wrong, I'm happy when something I do is meaningful for someone else. I feel encouraged when people tell me I've changed their view on something in a positive way. I love it and I would love also to make a living doing this one day
That's not the point. It was never the point and when I try to make it the point I lose my balance and fall down again.
I like to think that there is a positive ripple that moves outward from the choices I've made over the past year, but if I ever let myself believe that the ripple was the point then I'm lying. It wasn't. If I try to make that ripple the point then I lose my center and start splashing aimlessly around in a delusion until I topple off the edge of the waterfall.
No. The point is that I was tired of being the kind of person that sucked in all the light like a black hole and gave off only darkness in return.
What do I need to get out of this darkness, I'd asked.
The answer: Stop being it.
I started writing these blogs to practice being honest with myself. I started sharing them to practice being vulnerable and open to criticism. I had to stop hiding. Sometimes I think I write and share things hoping they will help someone else. Sometimes I do share things because I feel like they might help someone else, but even when I do that, its also because I'm practicing some other characteristic that I want to develop so that I can break down these walls and get out of the prison I created for myself.
I'm not writing this thinking that it will benefit other people. Sure, I can see how it could possibly be helpful if it is read and interpreted in a certain way, but that's not why I'm writing it.
I'm writing it because I let myself get swept away in a delusion again and I need to practice noticing that delusion and facing up to it, even when I don't want to.
I need to practice risking the judgement that may come with admitting that I'm selfish and that I want more for myself than I've had. I'm not a martyr. Every time I start to think of myself like one I am lying.
I could just reveal this to myself and not share it on the internet-- that is true--but when I share it here I am also practicing not being ashamed of my mistakes. I'm practicing being willing to open up about the things I'm embarrassed about, like the false beliefs and super wrong misconceptions.
It feels humiliating at first, but then it feels liberating. I don't want to hold on to these secrets and let them eat at me from the inside while I think, if anyone knew... If anyone knew how selfish I really was...
So I'll just tell you and then you'll know and I won't have to wonder what would happen if you found out.
I'm being selfish. I want to get better. I'm not writing this for you, I'm writing it for me. I got lost in a delusion, thinking I was better than I was it. I was wrong. The truth stung. I'll try again.
I'll most likely get swept up in the same delusion again and end up crashing into a wall and throwing another tantrum which I'll probably share with you out of spite for myself and then I'll calm down and write something like this AGAIN because it takes many of the same experiences and crashes for me to remember this lesson.
Thank you for putting up with me, though; for putting up with my delusions, my crashes, my tantrums and my shameless need to tell you again that I've messed up.
Thank you for letting me practice being honest, not only with myself but with the world.
Even if no one ever reads this.
Thank you for letting me write it and risk the thought that someone might.