Image description: A tabletop littered with various writing things. In the center is a home-made leaflet, made from blank pages of paper in various sizes.
… is certainly not a question good old Shakespeare had to deal with, but I’m sure he would sympathize nonetheless. I’ve been debating this with myself (and some of my friends, poor things) for literal years now. I’ve written this very blog post at least ten times, sending it to the aforementioned poor friends, who cheered and gave me the a-okay. I then hid the text in my Google Docs, adding it to the previously written versions. But I am doing this. I am writing. I am writing this blog post right now, because if I don’t I’m afraid I’ll abandon the whole question and join Shakespeare in not writing another word (sorry, William, too soon?).
In case this post just showed up in your feed and you have no idea who I am or why you’re reading this, allow me. This is my blog. It used to be about fashion, personal style, pixie cuts, vintage clothing, body positivity, and other random thoughts. Then I stopped blogging about the fashion stuff and wrote just the random thoughts. Then I got a virus on my balance nerve, and ever since I’ve been debating this bloody question: to blog or not to blog?
For a while it was an easy question, because I was physically unable to blog. Writing in general wasn’t possible. Or reading. Or looking at screens. (Yes, that was depressing, as you might remember from my last entry here, back in 2017). 2018 was a slightly better year, balance nerve-wise, as I was able to look at screens sometimes. The problem then was that I never knew how long I could do it until I’d be overcome with nausea, dizziness, and panic because I couldn’t look at screens without nausea, dizziness, and panic.
Thus passed another year, and though I did write a little, I did not blog. As you know, I guess, if you were one of those lovely people who stopped by here, leaving a lovely comment or sending me a lovely e-mail or generally being lovely in other ways. (Thank you, thank you, thank you.)
Now it’s 2019, and the screens are still connected to nausea and dizziness and, yes, panic. Think of it like this. Writing, for me, was everything. Reading, too, of course. But writing was how I… see, it’s funny, isn’t it, that I, the supposed writer, cannot find the words to even describe how much writing meant to me.
It was like… like writing was a friend/lover/soulmate that was always there. Writing wouldn’t get all nerdy with me, then sleep with me, then ghost me for months, then sleep with me again, repeatedly, awkwardly holding my hand when crossing puddles, then leave for another country and ghost me for… well, indefinitely. Writing was different. Writing was me, and I wouldn’t do that to myself. But then I lost writing anyway. And that, my darlings, was the ultimate heartbreak. No skinny-jeaned hipster can compare, not by a long shot.
So my dilemma now is this: several days a week (in a good week), for five to thirty minutes (depending on… stuff), I am physically able to write (if you ignore the wrist pain and the always-lurking nausea, dizziness, and panic). It’s one of the few ways I don’t feel ambiguously disabled these days: I am able to sit upright and put my fingers on a keyboard. And I am trying. I write words and sentences and sometimes paragraphs, but, as I’m sure dear William would agree, writing is more than just coming up with words and sentences and sometimes paragraphs. There’s an art to it, at least if you want to write something good. And I do. I admit it, I want to use words to play your heartstrings like Kvothe himself. Otherwise, what’s the point? Otherwise, it’s just words.
But what I write these days, when it’s honest and real and me, is not something I’d recommend while mindfully eating your morning avocado toast. It’s not pretty, or pleasant. Most of the time it’s full of grief and frustration and, worst of all, earnest. Yes, some might even say depressing. They might not be wrong. Because where I am right now, is stuck in the limbo of chronic illness, and it’s not something I can make go away by visualizing a calm and smiling version of myself in zero-waste, vegan yoga pants.
I suspect this will change. I mean, it has to, because even I have my limits for depressing earnestness. Still, it’s where I am now. And most of you signed up for posts about “how to dress for your proportions” or “should I get a pixie cut?”. So you can understand why I’m hesitant to try this blogging thing again. I cannot promise to be of any use for your personal style development, because I am done writing sensible, educational posts about a well-placed seamline. And my hair is way below shoulder length, so don’t expect any pixie advice, either.
Still the question lurks at the back of my mind: to blog or not to blog? Maybe if I just blog, just write, then that whole depressing earnestness might, in time, transform into my plain old earnestness? (Because let’s face it: that’s never going away.)
So, to blog or not to blog? Is there any point to blogging in 2019? Does it even need a point? If there’s anything I’ve learnt from chronic illness so far, it’s that a surprising amount of things in life are actually rather pointless. See what I meant about depressing earnestness?
Yes, I am making the usually-horrible decision to ask the Internet for advice, because I am at a genuine loss, and based on my previous experience, you folks can be a lot more helpful than dear William. So what do you say: to blog or not to blog? And why? I am all ears.