Thus far, 2009 has been the year of not writing in my blog. A few months ago, I started an e-mail to myself with ideas for blog posts I'd like to write and I saved it as a draft. Everytime I log into my e-mail, I see the draft folder and I'm reminded of the fact that I haven't written anything. I've even contacted people and said, "Hey, I'm going to write about you so get ready" and I haven't done anything. I'm not particularly sad or distracted, and I'm not necessarily overwhelmed with anything else either. I just can't seem to write it all down.
Setting up home out here in the 'burbs has been both a wonderful treat and a really tough lesson. We moved out here to just sort of escape the stress and hullabaloo of living in the city, and I think that we have definitely done that. Right before Christmas I went into the city to pick up my brother, who traveled in from NYC, and spent a fair part of the morning in a coffee shop or walking around a rather boring two block area of the city. But in those few hours I felt more at home than I do here, sometimes. I saw people that you don't see out here; more diverse than you can possibly imagine. I also felt simultaneously visible and invisible, but distinctly opposite from what I experience in the suburbs. It kind of solidifies, for me, what I've always understood the word queer to mean: uniquely and delightful different; left of center; superbly unusual.
The fact that I'm experiencing crafter's block and feeling kind of stuck in a creative Sahara shouldn't surprise me or you, given those circumstances. But it SUCKS. I bought this beautiful yarn recently and had wonderful intentions of making a cuddly baby blanket for the first baby to enter my life in a long long time. I've cast on ten or more times and I've just never been satisfied with it. My crafty nook has become a depository for all the crafty bits that were strewn throughout the apartment before Christmas, and for all the gifts I received. It's a mess. My sewing machine has been removed from the box, but I haven't used it. I have two amazing books with great patterns and tutorials, but I just don't feel compelled. I even received my purchase of the most beautiful felt and doodads from Lupin, and I still can't figure out a damned thing to make with it. What gives!?
To be fair to myself (and you, because you all might think I need some sort of medical intervention), there have been a ton of things lately that have sort of grabbed my consciousness in ways that most things haven't. I've been wrestling with a lot of opinions and feelings about reproduction, Catholicism, the government and how they all intertwine. I can't say I cared about any of it since I came out 7.5 years ago. But now that we have a shiny new President and the Vatican is threatening to close Catholic hospitals nationwide if the Freedom of Choice Act legislation passes, I can't help but get pissed off.
I've also been struggling with communication lately. I joke that Mercury is in retrograde and that must be it, and that might be true, but I also just suck at speaking to anyone right now. I either expose too many vulnerabilities or I am wildly misunderstood and stomp my feet in complete and utter frustration. The icing on the cake is the heartache and frustration with not only losing a friend, but losing a friend to their own careless and wreckless selfishness. I always tend to look within and wonder what part, no matter how small, I had in encouraging that kind of behavior in a person.
I'm also STILL fighting with me and myself about whether I can commit myself to participating in the music and arts festival I helped organize for another year. Because of my communication struggles, I'm inclined to feel very negative about any of it being successful. But the sales pitch I give to other people is that this sort of experience will reflect positively on me, professionally, one day and that the possibilities for networking are really fantastic. I have a great repoire with some wonderful people and I am optimistic about what I can do. The complication lies with my ability to work successfully with other people. I feel like I'm facing new versions of all the personalities I contended with in high school...triggering, mildly traumatic and very, very complicated.
AND THEN, my best friend's candy store is closing. The economy sucks. I have tried my hardest to hold it together and be strong and supportive, and I think for the most part that I am comfortable with the reality of things and how things have played out. But like I said, it sucks. Rock Candy was kind of emblematic of something kid-like and sweet (no pun); it was a modern day version of every Charlie Bucket's dream. It was an opportunity for something delicious and decadent to thrive in a world that is kind of dismal and gray, especially these days. It was evidence to me that I could, one day, open up a shop of my own and sell nothing but fun and unnecessary things to people who love fun and unnecessary things. I thought the neighborhood and economy could support that kind of childlike glee, but it couldn't. And I'm so sorry that my friends and my dear sweet goddaughter have to close it up and hopehopehope that they'll be able to reopen one day. That is the sort of place that a kid should grow up in.
Not everything is humdrum or depressing, though. There are some really great things in my life, and I can't really write a post like this without acknowledging them, even if I do it in list format.
1. Em - the mac & cheese recipe is a perfect way to describe how great my partner is. Warm, comforting, and home. I'm lucky (yes, msaims, LUCKY!).
2. My BFF - because I honestly couldn't be my mopey, weepy, off-my-rocker self without her telling me that she, too, has felt compelled to eat flowers.
3. Bigelow's Lemon Lift tea
4. Big Love - thank GOD it's back on.
5. Jane Austen movies
6. Crafters - the only competitiveness I have ever really felt relates to crafts and keeping up with successful and incredibly creative crafty people. The only reason I know that I'm experiencing crafter's block is the pilot light still burning within, and that is always ready because of the community I'm a part of as a crafter.
While writing this post, I've added a few more ideas to the e-mail in my Drafts folder, and I hope that in the coming days and weeks I can get my act together and write. I promise to make it worth your (and my) while.