Wow, it’s kind of hard to belive I’ve been blogging for seven years.
That’s several eternity’s in internet fad years.
Blogging, as a cultural phenomenon, is more or less over. Yes, there are still many, many blogs, and some of them are very good, and very important (PZ Myers, for example); but those blogs have really moved into the realm of journalism. We have the funny-syndicated-columnist (dooce is this generation’s erma bombeck), we have science and political writers.
But we don’t really have a ‘blogger community’ anymore. The success of social network platforms and microblogging has pretty much removed any need for the casual blogger to maintain a blog; the community is on facebook|twitter|tumblr.
However, that doesn’t mean the blog as a creative medium is irrelevant; just that we’ve moved into a new phase, in which those who still do it, do so for more traditional reasons.
Obviously, I’ve fallen out of both camps.
In any case, this last year has been a bitch.
The very short story about all this is that my kids, inheritors of all the worst kinds of mental health genes, have both melted down in different ways. We’ve had hospitalizations, outpatient therapy groups, medications to manage, and more money spent on various therapies than I can possibly afford.
It’s felt like a running fight for our lives.
I’m not superstitious; i’m a skeptic, an atheist, an empiricist. I don’t belive in the idea of a jinx. And yet, i’m almost afraid to say in print that things may be getting better, finally.
All I can judge my is the climate in my household, the emotional temperature. And things seem, faintly, to be warming. It’s like those early hints of spring to come, when the weather isn’t really warmer, but the air smells different. The battle is one fought daily, but headway, in tiny steps, is being made.
This isn’t a battle that started in 2010; it’s a battle years longer in the making. BUt its’ a battle I could’t fight on my own. No amount of clarity of mind and understanding of problem and solution can solve other people’s personality disorders; it’s just something that has to come in it’s own time, it’s own way.
Part of the reason I’ve so completely drifted away from blogging is that so much of what I do and say has been, for ages, filtered to maintain calm; after a certain number of years training a habit, it can come to be default behavior. Not saying what I really think, not telling the whole truth, has become my default state.
My hope is that I can find some way out of that state; by changing my life, my approach, and my habits, I can achive progress not just in my home life, but in my creative liufe as well.
Photography has been an incredible help to me.
I have a burning need to create; yet my media avenues are limited by capability. Music has never worked for me, as much as I live and breath it; I have no rhythm whatsoever, and no great ear for tone. I can’t sing at all. Fine arts, also, defeat me; I have no great manual dexterity. My hands are made to swing axes and carry loads, not to perform tiny, detailed motions.
But there are tools available to me that do not require these gifts; the keyboard, the camera. So while, temporarily, my gift with language has deserted me, I find that I do have other abilities.
The act of making something for no reason other than to create beauty is incredibly satisfying.
Thus my blog may change focus for a bit; but I find I have creative voice again, and once again, a reason to blog. And that feels good.