One Foot in Front of the Other

OK, time out, there's something I need to say. Now, before I lose my nerve.

I second-guess and overthink and introspect. I've introspected myself out of a blog--or indeed an online presence--more than once before. I am, shall we say, overburdened with ability in the area of self-sabotage via excessive contemplation.

So I'm not going to second-guess. I'm not going to overthink.

I'm going to say this, because it's been on my mind:

Last year, some people and some things and some events did a pretty solid number on my happiness. The details are irrelevant. I was depressed for a good six months. I may still be kind of depressed (with me, it's always an open question. I am not one of nature's happy animals). However, one thing that has helped a lot in all this misery is seeing examples of other people who have had their hearts broken by life and have just kept plugging away, getting up one day after the next. Doing the thing. And then the next thing. Trying to be good-humored about it and continue to make beauty, one step at a time, one foot in front of the other. It made me feel less alone and like all of this was a lot more survivable.

I'd like to try to pass that on, you know? That solidarity that has buoyed me up. So I am going to be honest, here, Internet, in a way that things like the Marigold Woman only hint at. I'm pretty ridiculously sad. I've been sad for a while. Sometimes I feel a bit more chipper, but sadness is always lurking nearby like a snail made of lead that sits on my shoulder. You can still dance with a snail made of lead on your shoulder, of course, but sometimes your shoulder hurts.

I'm also scared. I'm older than I want to be and less successful than I feel I ought to be and trying to figure out what to do with my life when there are a lot of things I could be doing but few easy signposts telling me what I SHOULD be doing. I'm not as self-sufficient as I believe I should be.

I'm also frustrated. The world is not the place I thought it would be, the institutions that mean a lot to me are corrupt and ineffectual, the economy is terrifying and the weather is unnerving and this is just not what I signed up for when I was eight years old. The world is a bad and scary place and I cannot fix that.

But the thing is, I get up in the morning. I work my part-time job under my boring, non-superhero name. When I get off work, I write things and I draw things. I try to read books, something that has gotten harder since college (I'm going to write a post about this because I'm pretty sure I'm not alone here). I try to make friends, despite my comically irrational anxiety and introversion. I try to keep doing the thing.

This is rapidly losing coherence, but what I'm trying to say is that I've realized that if I want to do my bit as a person who writes and who makes things, I should maybe stop worrying about some grand philosophy of blogging and just start talking about the one thing I know about, the one thing that I know has (in other people) helped me: doing the thing.

Getting up each morning.

Working at a job.

Trying to succeed at something difficult and scary.

Failing a lot.

Doing it again.

Also, possibly, putting a little party hat on the lead snail.