I have avoided writing about Japan.
I can’t even comprehend what’s going on over there.
My brain can’t compute. I don’t think my empathy extends that far.
And I guess that I’ve been avoiding it because if I write posts about every disaster that I see on the news, this blog will just be a constant news stream. How do I decide which disasters to write about and which to ignore? (Yes, I have been ignoring it. Not just ‘avoiding’ it. It’s just too difficult.)
This seems to be one of my ‘things’ at the moment: I’m suddenly very aware of the stuff going on in the world. And I mean the bad stuff. I’m slowly emerging from my baby-induced bubble and it’s like I’m seeing all the horrible things for the first time. My filters are out of practise. Let’s face it, we all have filters. There is no way we could get through each day if we couldn’t filter out certain things and just get on with looking after ourselves and our families. But have we become so good at blocking out the awful things that we forget about them completely? Had I become so complacent about poverty, disease and disaster that I’d stopped caring, and now suddenly I feel bombarded by it? My ‘comfort zone’ (for lack of a better description) has been jiggled around a bit, and it’s not pleasant.
I wish I could go out there and solve all the world’s problems. But I feel utterly helpless, and I even feel as though it’s pointless to try to help – I mean, what is my little donation to charity actually going to do? The problems are so big.
Sigh. Saying ‘it’s not fair’ is useless. But I can’t stop thinking it.
Wow. Last week’s challenge to limit my ‘line-age’ had a pretty severe effect on me… it’s quite scary. I found myself looking at lots of other blogs when I usually would be writing mine, and I’ve landed up with a scary case of blogger depression. Something like withdrawal symptoms combined with wondering why on earth I’m doing this, along with a complete and utter inspiration failure. And then add some serious blogger envy to the mix, too. Those ‘real’ bloggers out there have such talent. They seem so perfect. They make pretty things, and their photos are gorgeous (and in the background of their photos, their homes are spotless and immaculate and so stylishly done up). I’m a loser! I am never going to have such abilities! My crafty aspirations aren’t happening (I just don’t have the time!), my limited imagination and vision mean all I can do is copy others’ ideas. My house is a mess! Did I mention I’m a loser?
But then, as if destiny herself were guiding my mouse clicks, I came across this little lifesaver.
Sigh. I’m ok. I’m normal. This is me. And part of my journey as a blogger – nay, mother/wife/woman/human being – is that I will have good days and bad days. So far this blog has been fun and easy and just the right amount of stretching. And then I hit a bad patch. I thought the challenge of reducing my words for four days would be good for me. Huh, I was wrong.
But that’s life. Sometimes we make bad choices. And then we learn from them.
So what have I learnt?
I have rediscovered that, sure, I want to be challenged and inspired to try new things. I want to evolve and grow and improve. But I am still me:
This is my web log, my journey, my words, my days.
I really want a typewriter. A proper old manual one, with spindly keys and a noisy carriage and an ink ribbon.
I can get one for a reasonable price on eBay (although the postage cost is usually almost as much, if not more than, the actual typewriter). The ribbons too, can be sourced fairly easily and cheaply online.
But I am doing the sensible thing and exercising restraint, waiting until I go back to work and we are no longer on maternity leave rations. LOML is impressed with the sensibility of my decision, which feels good, but I still don’t like to wait. In fact, thinking about what I can afford when I go back to work makes me look forward to going back.
Humans are, I think, by nature pretty selfish creatures. And I don’t mean this in a negative, cynical way. I think it’s just a fact. Being married has been revealing for me because my self-centredness clashes with my desire to make someone else happy; to put their needs above mine. And having a child means that I can never be truly selfish again because there is another little person who needs my time and energy more than I do.
So really, I can wait for that typewriter because of my time not my money. I know myself, I am still too selfish to have a typewriter. I will think to myself, Little Man can play by himself for just a couple of minutes while I type this. Instead of being there with him, using my time and my energy on him, playing and cuddling and singing and being.
When I look back on my life, will I regret not hacking away at a noisy typewriter, or not squeezing in every moment I possibly could of my boy’s fleeting babyhood?
I still want a typewriter. But I am not ready for one. Not yet.
Hermes Baby, or My Baby?