im missing something character wise. that thing that allows one to face insurmountable challenges and power through them. that thing within that makes one love his work more than his play. (great pun since my struggle to complete writing a play triggerd this deep self analysis). im missing that thing that makes one want to be independent. that thing that makes one bold. for the shy shall never succeed.
it was my everlasting hope that through writing this blog, an honest journey and exploration of my thoughts and writing, i would find that one missing character component that has eluded me. yes, im hoping that there is a single deficiency for my issues. id like to wholly rectify it. and accomplish my sky reaching dreams.
6 years ago i started work on an amazing 1000 page novel. my most poignant and rich tale. my lifes ouvre. naturlly i never finished it.
from the moment my pen touched that first sheet of paper, filled it with all of those wonderful ideas for that novel/ my truest essense of writer and artist and adventurer meeting/ i struggled to complete it. the book, now only 50% done, sits in a box. on a shelf. just a few feet from me at this moment. covered in dust. why?
it was 5 years ago that i came to the awful realization that im not that person that wants to jump out of bed in the morning and work until the sun sets until the project is done. and sold. and on a shelf. no matter how imporant or amazing i believe this project to be. (though i cut myself some slack realizing that writing your first novel is unpaid, unmonitored, self motivated work and i hand wrote it).
5 years ago i realized i wastn a person able to forgo (sp?) all manner of distraction and other earthbound delights in order to sit alone in a room and correct the intracicies of dialogue, or work though a complicated plot twist. its not within my nature to be that man. im more of the dreamer by the window easily distracted. like my cat.
is this fixable? and what be the cause?
lets talk cause first.
i should have done a tour of duty in WWII. let me clarify this and say i should ahve signed up for the navy and gone out and done my duty for country in the 40’s. i wouldnt do this in another time period. something about the second great war and the idealogy of the time and the way the country was and the way it build character is what im looking for. i mean that seriously. and i mean that with no disrespect to those who served. rather its with reverance that i say this. i missed some very important steps in the character building department because of my lack of exposure to brute force discipline. conformity. and bootstrap principles. these prinicples, the conformity and regimen of being a soldier, would have amended my tendency to throw in the towel at the first hint of obstacle. soldiering is about overcoming obstacles. surviving. teamwork. honor. integrity. and above all hardwork and dedication. even when youre alone.
instead i was born in soft nappys. wrapped warm. fed milk like that damned exotic moth from “silence of the lambs”. and i was kept in the dark like that moth. though thankfully not looked after by buffalo bill types. i knew not even a whim of social ills. felt nary a chill wind nor drop of rain clouded my days. though my family were kept as slaves not even 3 generations before mine i was not reminded of this struggle. and the shit show that life can be. i was loved. too much. and i still wear and hat and scarf on 65 degree days to prove it. thus was my “nurture”.
lets dig deeper. lets talk about my current nature. nature in the sense of the reality ive created based on a set of ingrained tendencies and learned behaviors.
i hate to admit this next truth.fuck it. here it is. laid bare.
ive used my intelligence and appearance to continue a life lived in “moth” mode. ive constructed an existence where i am protected and sheltered by those who love me. i have made sure ive remained a child in so many ways, though next month im going to be 32. at 32 my parents started our family! what the hell am i doing? im so far from being able to take care of myself i cant even imagine how they were able to bring life into the world and support another living person. i feel unprepared. and irresponsible. for some of lifes most basic tasks. i feel like im 15 years old. maybe 12.
im getting very emotional as i write this. but im fine. ill continue though part of me is ashamed at my lack of work ethic. at my own self serving indulgence. at my ability to thwart responsibility for most real life things. you see ive just now started to face this “easy road” reality ive created. started to dislike it. and pull up the rug on it. and the emotions brought up from such an exploration are not pleasant. this process is a bit like being an opiate addict and kicking the pills. all the years of avoided pain/struggle/responsiblity come rushing at you all at once. thats whats happening to me. though my specific process is happning in a more controlled way. im in raft and i havent lost the oars. im holding it together and seeing small little changes. in my mindset mostly. this is the initial stage of change. but somewhere deep inside i feel sad and crazy. and guilty.
“im a shirk and jive man.” -odie mama.
song and dance man requires work. and practice…
nature? nurture? i talked about this a little bit.. but lets revisit from another angle. can you believe i was thinking about not writing my daily blog entry today and look what this has turned into. maybe i was just subconsiously afraid to put all this shit on paper?…too late now..
ive spent the last few years looking for the seeds of my indolence. and i looked no further than the small wading pool that is my gene pool. this is not about inbreeding. more about life achievements.
am i like my parents? am i not like them. how in those ways? or am i just a bad see of worst spawn spin off…. talented. directionless. idle… a perfect recipe for insanity. and early onset ______? suicide? thats hot it either. maybe failure? i cant think of word. fill in the blank as you wish.
as for that nurture. beyond the family realm: lets look at my political socio economic societal background things that fucked me up. though part of the blame anyone else mentality its still of vital importance to look into.
i was born a middle class black and white child. it was the 80s. neon pants abound (why the fuck are they back in style in 2012?? they look shite). debbie gibson on the radio. crimped hair sitting pretty on the popular girls domes. the future was bright (with the possiblity of nuclear war. not that we were scared. no school yard evac drills: no point in diving under your desks if your face is being fried off with plutonium.)
for us sheltered kids of the liberal suburbs of chicago it was all pie in the sky.
we were told “you can be whatever you want to be”. now i look around and see a generation of fucked up people. my peers. we cant save our money. we cant plan for tomorrow. we hate being told no. now substitue the “we” for “I” and all my issues are revealed. is my happy go luck schoolyard experience one of the reasons really why im disfuctional though?…
“suzy wants to be a fireman”.
in the 80s when suzy revealed this as her future dream job all they said was “thats great”. draw yourself as a fireman on paper with these crayons.
what they should ahve said is …”well suzy, youre a woman. so its going to be hard. for these reasons. and suzy, youre a minority so youre going to face these challenges. and even if youre not any of these things with these special challenged, if you dont work hard at becoming a fireman you will never make it”.
dont tell her is “all gravy”. tell her it will be virtually impossible without the work. so she can be prepared for the no. and power through it..
i wish theyd told us that the basic premise of the universe is “it aint easy”, “people will always say no”, and “youre going to have to work harder than you ever thought you could if you have any hope of making it..and even then that might not be enough”. thats not discouraging. thats called real world preparedness. its not all show tunes and icecream. the background music stops. there might not be a chair there for you when it does. (cuz no ones going to be saving on for you in most workable scenarios. unles you pay for it.
shit happens. i wish id had a little more of that. even from my wise folks. and theyre good people. this isnt about throwing them udner the bus…
now at my ripe old age im going to have to go out and do all that realization stuff for myself. and hope that its not too late to face the music. i am the captain of this ship…
i think im ready for the grown up world. on some levels…
*an easy code to break. not an easy blog to read…thanks for making it to the end.
p.s. layed was a legit way to spell laid until the 17th century