Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Writing will set me free, or some such shit like that

I used to write all the time when I was younger. I wrote journals, I wrote page after page of inane poetry, I wrote short stories. I took special classes for creative writing in high school and at the local community college. One of the many careers I fantasized about was being a photo-journalist. (I also at one point wanted to sing and dance on Broadway. At another point, I thought I might want to be a lawyer to "change the system from the inside". I even wanted to work with animals, maybe in Africa.) I dreamed of going places and doing things, and I thought that being a photo-journalist might take me somewhere.

What I ended up doing was not graduating high school, even though I got high honors the year before I dropped out. I had issues, some of them were with my mental health, some were because of partying too much, and then I got sick. Save your sympathy, I partied enough for everyone the first semester of my senior year. Second semester, I got tonsillitis. I was 16, and needed to have my tonsils out, but was too sick all the time for them to actually perform the surgery. At one point, I couldn't stop coughing in class, and I heard something snap. The nurse called my mother to take me straight to the Emergency Room. I had broken 2 ribs, and dislocated the cartilage on four others. By the time my tonsils were taken out, I had lost too many credits to graduate with my class.

I decided if I could not walk the pomp and circumstance with my friends, I would drop out, work full time, and get my GED. Which I did. Let me tell you, if half of my peers had to take that test, they would not have graduated. I only barely squeaked by on the math portion, but I did it! I also finished a nine month program for word processing at night, while working full time, before I got my actual GED in the mail (with my name spelled wrong, you rotten bastards!). Computers were a much safer field than anything I had previously wanted to do, but that was where I found myself.

I eventually stopped writing altogether.

Recently, I set up accounts on a couple of networking sites. I set up on one of them at my sister's insistence, it seems to be where most of the people my age are, and I was happy I hooked up with some old friends. I set up on the other, younger hipper site, to keep an eye on my son's private account - uh, er, I mean because that is also where my niece is and they can see my pictures.

I wrote a post on one of the networking sites about my friend at work and his horrible accident. I liked how it felt, so I wrote another one. And really liked how it felt. I felt like I needed to write about some deep, personal issues, but didn't want to have to censor myself because people I knew might be reading it. Hence this relatively anonymous blog.

I'm not writing a blog to jump on any band wagon. My writing is mediocre, at best. I don't feel like I have anything important to say, in the grand scheme of things. I certainly don't think I'm going to be popular or make money off of this. (I will stop short of saying I don't care what people think about me, because that wouldn't be the truth. Thanks, Joe, whoever you are, for leaving my first comment.) Writing just feels therapeutic right now. By writing about my issues, I am able to rehash them and think about them. Hopefully, I will be able to work through them and let them go.

And this is a lot less expensive than a $15 dollar a week co-pay at my last therapist. He once asked me to rate how I was feeling that week about my life in general on a scale of 1-10. I was having a rough week, but I was okay with it. I gave myself a 7. He was shocked, he said he would have put me at a 2. I decided he was no longer worth $15 dollars a week to me.


Anonymous said...

"I thought I might want to be a lawyer to "change the system from the inside"."

I paid the big books to go to law school for the same reason. While the school part was fun, I realized I hated the law part. Good for you for saving the money!

Also, I'm glad to see I'm not the only one underimpressed with their therapist...

Fancy Schmancy said...

Yeah, I realized pretty quickly how much I hated it, also.

As for the therapist issue, do you know how rampant mental illness is in the mental health field? It is so difficult to find a good one! Chin up, you're doing much better than you think you are.