Turn your face to the sun and the shadows fall behind you.
~ Maori Proverb ~
I have been trying to figure out, for some time, what happened to me. All my life, since I was a child, I have been an avid reader. My entire house is stuffed to the gills with books and many are books that I have read and reread and clung to like old friends that have pulled me out of dark difficult times more often in my life that I can count. I went from reading sometimes several books at once to falling out of time and space and being sucked -- willingly -- into what might be considered in this day and age, a Bermuda Triangle of sorts. People enter the world of the net and eventually, over time, all but disappear from the real world. And as I live alone it has been all too easy to do just that. Sucked into the void I have spent more and more time on the net so that I have receded less and less from the real world, from my real writing, from reading, from my art. It was almost like the internet was the real world and the rest of life was just killing time until I got back to the net.
Please Note: I speak only for myself and my own experience. Whatever anyone else does and how they do it and how they balance it with their own lives is up to them and may suit them very well. I do make not judgements. I simply came to the point in my own life when I knew something was seriously wrong and had to change.
Also, I have come to the realization that if I spend too much time blogging it sucks the life out of my real writing, like letting helium out of a balloon. I need to fill my balloon back up. I need to write more and blog less. I need to sell my artwork locally with perhaps a few internet sales here and there but only from my blog. And I desperately need to make more money to live on and I cannot do that blogging and try to maintain a shop in which I have not sold one item in 3 months despite my best efforts. I am walking away from the internet to a great extent and back into my life. Imagine that. Real people. Time to write, to read. Time to be.
Now, I am certainly not leaving the net entirely. This will be my one blog and I will at least update it weekly and bi-weekly when I am able. I will actually get a lot more work done with my art because I am not glued to the computer in a way that leaves me not enough time to truly do my work. I feel as if I am walking out of a long dark tunnel back into the light.
Now, mind, as I said above, I love the net, it's a really wonderful resource, I have made some very dear friends through the net and I will keep in touch with them. I'm not falling off of the face of the earth, but there have been all too many times when I had very dear, personal e-mails in my box and didn't get around to them sometimes for weeks because I ran right to Facebook, Twitter, my etsy shop, updated blogs, running like a chicken without a head. This had to stop.
This has been coming for some time. I have thought about it very often. I have simply not known what to do. Yesterday I got some chilling news and was so terrified all day long that I was not even functional. I cried. I couldn't breathe. I curled up in my big chair as if in the fetal position with a pug in my arms, clinging to him for dear life and burying my face in his warm soft Teddy Bear like coat. And then I caught my breath. I cancelled things. I returned things. I said NO to things, I quit Facebook, Twitter, etsy, one blog, and more. I had several toolbars for bookmarks and I emptied 3 of them completely. I fell back into my chair exhausted, shaking, and crying. And then...
After a brief time which might be considered terrifying withdrawal, I began to feel relief creeping back in around the edges. I know that the ramifications will not be felt for some time, but already last night and today I have gotten so much fiber work done I am almost shocked. I have deleted tons of mail and answered the important mail. I set up a private e-mail account just to write "real letters" via e-mail to my nearest and dearest. I felt joy.
Beethoven once wrote, "I write you letters by the thousands in my mind." I always thought that that was beautiful, but the thing is that you can write a thousand in your mind but if nobody receives them how do you sustain a friendship or other relationship? Now instead of getting on Facebook or worrying about Twittering, I can actually have a long, slow, peaceful time to write to my nearest and dearest. I can use the internet as the great resource that it is for my writing and art, I can do this one blog, and I can write my book. And that's just exactly what I am going to do.
I am, in large part, leaving the internet. Life is the main goal, and the internet is a wonderful, joyful thing to be a part of my life but only a slender piece of the pie, not the whole thing.
Balance. I seek balance. I am afraid, this is a big leap, life is scary right now in more ways than I will share here, and I am taking care of myself as best I can.
So I wanted to share this with all of you and let you know that I will be here. Please know that I read and treasure every single comment people leave here. The comments mean more to me than I can say. I receive them like a beautiful gift but seldom have time to respond. It's not that I don't want to, it is because life won't allow it. I am guarding my life and my time zealously as I make these changes and get back on track.
I am waving at you and sending you much love and warm hugs from the other side of the screen here. I hope to hear from some of you who are true friends via e-mail and there is a link here near the top on the right to e-mail me. I may not be quick to answer but I will treasure each of your mails and do what I can to answer. I bow in deep gratitude to each and every one of you.
I am afraid. I am confused. I am uncertain, but I just keep walking through the darkness toward the light. It's time. And now I know I can make it.
Warm Regards & Deepest Blessings to All,