For starters, this is not a book review. No, those will be coming in droves for the next few weeks. I don’t think I’ll be posting a review for every book I read over the last few months, but I will try to do some highlights, starting with one that I had already started reviewing and abandoned. This post is, quite possibly, one of those cliched mea culpa posts that start flooding in at the beginning of every new year. I could say it’s my “New Year’s Resolution” to restart my blog, but I don’t really believe in resolutions. Sure, it’s a principle which acts as a driving force to get us moving, but the whole concept generally gets in the way and causes us to give up on our resolutions. Merely stating you are going to do something doesn’t tackle the reasons behind your getting to that point in the first place. You have to tackle the driving force that pushed you off course, and that’s often full of complexity.
2022 for me was rough. I won’t go into all the nitty gritty, but I struggled in more ways than one. I think as a rule we as humans only give up on one thing when the shit hits the fan and life gets complicated. We give up on ourselves, and we neglect ourselves. That just causes our mental state and our emotional well-being to unravel to a greater extent and then we have even less motivation to fight for ourselves. How bad it gets before we decide to do something about it varies from person to person. For me, I’m still not sure I’ll be successful at regaining much of anything, but I’m not yet willing to give up. The truth is, I’m not really one to talk about anything. I’ve always been the strong one, the one who was there to listen to anyone else and offer advice. I don’t know how to sit in the other seat, because I don’t like being vulnerable. And even when I have tried, it’s backfired and I wind up feeling even worse about myself. So I shut my mouth again. It turns out I’m really total shit at following my own advice.
I know it’s possible to claw your way back up and find inner peace and regain some semblance of your old self that believed you have what it takes to do something that makes you happy. I’m not talking about “success” in the traditional sense. A sense of purpose doesn’t necessarily bring money and fame. I just want to feel like I mean something. Like I didn’t sell myself short. I’ve seen it happen. I’ve seen someone hit absolute rock bottom and use it as a way to follow a crazy dream and it worked! My problem is that I’ve never actually followed the dream, and now my self doubt wonders if I’m actually strong enough to do it. I have a lot to be thankful for. I love my family and I live for them. I’m just not sure I JUST want to live for them. I want to live for me, too.
When I first started this blog, it was because I wanted to reconnect with that part of myself that was passionate about literature. I missed academia. I wanted to write again. Even if I was writing about the writings of other people, it gave me a purpose beyond the monotony of everyday life that I sometimes feel is crashing down around me. Obviously, getting back to where I was a year ago in regard to this blog is a good first step in trying to reinvigorate all that. There’s so much I need to fix, both personally and professionally. And I will start by trying to fix me.