If I am honest with myself, what has kept me from writing for so long is that I miss who I was. Spending hours and hours and flipping’ HOURS writing about who I am now pops the fragile concentrate bubbles of my ego, my public persona, and the fictional family who only ever existed in the digital pages of a long forgotten blog.
And yesterday provided the best clue as to why this impasse must end. As I built the new site, I threw a page up on the blog just to see how the layout would work. Headers, footers, even Squarespace fills a bit overblown when it comes to just throwing content into the wild. I was getting lost in fonts and sidebars and don't even get me started in just how this user interface completely fails me when it comes to loading images for headers, posts, and backgrounds. But every word of that flippant placeholder post reveals in 24 hours retrospect my inner most sources of resistance.
Rather than fuss about the look and feel, I just need to write. Never mind the audience. Never mind the artificial goal of "16 in the can" before I start to publish. Just fill the space. Most of all, make it easy. The mechanics are not the hard part and never were. The difficulty was always and remains applying a degree of honesty and self-discipline to the art of public confessional.
Change, however, requires a clear understanding of what is in it for me. I don't think I knew until just a few weeks ago when I heard a This American Life podcast. The core subject of the piece was a woman who was agonising over what to do about letters her mother had left her to be read post-mortem. Despite the angst of the situation, ultimately the words from the past from a loving parent have proven important and precious to that family. Seen in the context of a legacy for my family -- for my girls and even my husband who bodes fair well to live long beyond me -- it seems worth the effort.