I have been using my typewriter to type out my recollections and thoughts on topics and themes that animate my life. I’ll sit down at my typewriter, usually on a Friday night, pick a topic, and just start writing. It’s very stream of consciousness stuff, even more so than these blog posts.
The idea behind this project, if it can be called that, is to clear out some of the cobwebs in my head. Every psychologist and counsellor that I’ve seen has told me that I need to write out my thoughts, some even suggesting that I complete a novel. I’ve always passed them off as being flippant, picking up on one aspect of who I am and presenting it to me as a coping mechanism. Now that I’ve come to the idea of this project on my own, it feels like a good exercise.
I’ve been doing this for about a month now. I feel like I’ve written out at least a novella or a hundred pages. After a quick count, it’s only forty single-sided sheets of paper held together with a binder clip.
Here are some things that I’ve learned so far:
- When the only audience for what you write is you, you are free to write whatever the hell you want to. Seriously, it’s liberating in a unique way. I think we don’t realise how much of our communication is done with others in mind. Of course, that makes sense. But, we don’t often think about how we communicate with ourselves. I’m not talking about that mindfulness stuff, but I might be. What I’m talking about is how we communicate with ourselves in the same way as we do with others. You don’t need to.
- Writing freely about yourself will become something you look forward to doing. Most of what we talk about is ourselves, so it makes sense that it’d be enjoyable to sit down and write about myself, too. Friday nights have become the evenings and nights that I enjoy sitting down with myself to write. It’s almost as if I’ve scheduled it in. When I do something else, I feel a sense of FOMO. It’s a great night to grab a six pack and more, sit down at my desk, and just write.
- It’s much easier to write about the things that hurt most after you’ve had, at least, a few drinks. Because I’m the type of person whose filter thins with each drink, I’m able to approach some topics that I’ve been avoiding thinking and writing about after I’ve been drinking. There are a lot of things that I need to work through in my personal life. Writing about them is how I’m choosing to do that. I need a little motivation, though, and alcohol helps. This is also another reason that Friday nights are good nights to write.
- My life is complex but not complicated. I’m about 40% as interesting as I thought I was. Sure, there are a lot of moving parts, but none of it is especially difficult to understand. I think that by equivocating my thoughts, I’ve perceived myself as more complicated, and thereby more interesting, than I really am. When laid bare, there really isn’t much mud in the waters. I just need to wade through interconnected ponds.
- All of the things in my life are connected by a single thread: me. At the centre of everything in my life is me. My world really does revolve around me. But, then, we’re all pivoting on our own axes. Sometimes, we’re in the same rotation in the same orbit and we can wave hello to one another. Eventually, though, we have to go home and write about it.
Past topics have included girlfriends, Riel, and current perceptions of life. Tonight’s topic is, “guilt, shame, and forgiveness”.