I have a confession to make. Perhaps not so much a confession as an admittance. Things are more real when you say them out loud, right? They take on a body, a purpose; they’re no longer just vague feelings that you’re too afraid to face or describe. Once spoken aloud, releasing them to the Universe’s discregretion, they take on a significance and a fate. They mean something. And things that mean something can’t be overlooked, which most certainly was what you were trying to do in the first place.
And here it is, my own. And it does hurt. I’m twinging, my heart twitching and twisting this way and that. Which is actually a good thing, I suppose, considering the subject matter of the words I am about to emancipate out into the cold and clear. I think my heart is numbing.
Yes, that seems about right, ironically, since it is so terrifyingly wrong. My heart’s never not felt. It’s always been alive, leaping and reacting ever so proficiantly. What exactly is going on? What has happened? Where has the fight gone? Where’s the fury, the wonder, the awe and adoration that has long steeped my heart? It doesn’t make sense. Or, at least, I don’t want it to make sense.
Unfortunately, if given enough time to reflect, it, sadly and depressingly, makes all too much sense. A human being, no matter how exuberant and untiring their engine is, will always, inevitably, one day run out of steam. You can’t just keep going and going. Not without diverging. Not without consequences. The road isn’t smooth or steady, and the older you get the less spryly you hop over protrudences.
I’m burned out. Or, at least, I feel burned out. I certainly don’t feel a blaze in me, like I used to. Good Heavens, I barely feel a flame. It’s all but a sputtering ember. This is not a choice, mind you. I miss being me. I miss being indefatigably in love with what I do. That is, with what I was doing. Oh, Life, you sly slut. Stealing away all my affections and dispersing them in all sorts of unuseful directions. And I let you. I aided you, basically. “A phone? Give it here!” “A job? Yes, I need one of those. Let’s dive in!” “The internet? Let me grab my syringe!”
Oh, blessed be, what was the matter with me? Why didn’t I know better? Why didn’t I fear those things properly, like a wise soul? Why did I allow myself to be let astray and deceived, and then digested and chewed up by them? Just let those humans beat the weirdness out of you, didn’t you, Emily? Sometimes it made you angry, sometimes it saddened you, and there were even those rare occasions when you fought back, but it made little difference, didn’t it? Slowly, with the imperceptible give of an iceberg melting, you let their claws sink in and change you.
Great blue skies above, what did you think would happen? My King, my Jesus said it Himself that you automatically do what your mind focuses on. The sheer wisdom. It shames me.
I remember when I prided myself on being different. I knew what I wanted for my life, I knew how I was going to do it, and anyone who opposed or had a differing opinion could stuff him or herself till they burst with ill-contempt. What happened? I ask you that in a very plain, straight-forward manner. Because, I would really like to know. This business is starting to get out of hand. You just had your first book signing, a long scrabbled-for, hard-earned benchmark moment in your life and you didn’t even enjoy it. Utterly ridiculous! You ought to be slapped senseless.
. . . And I don’t want that. I don’t want to not cherish those times. I want to be able to bask in my own achievements. I want to want what I want. Instead of just wanting out of habit. That’s the most horrid thought imaginable.
Have things really changed that much? Well, they have altered quite a bit. You got a job, your brother moved out, you got a long-term, heavily involved boyfriend, you got another family to contend with, you got a new best friend, you had to become your own publicist, you were sucked into a repulsive world of gossip and hate and pettiness. Too much. Too fast. Where has my soul gone?
Because I truly feel as though my soul has abandoned me. Or I have abandoned it. One or the other. The emotion I fear above all others is emptiness. I shudder at the notion. I want to care. I yearn to care. I have to care. I pushed and shoved myself this far, I can’t start not caring. Something, or a great many things, have to change. I have to make a regime for myself. I have to remind myself why I am doing all this in the first place. I have to be in love before I can present myself to an audience and claim that I am in love and want to start a riot over it. It has to be real. It has to be obvious. It has to be screaming at the top of its lungs inside me, so that everyone can see it in my eyes. I can’t just say I’m a caged beast, I have to actually be a caged beast. And in order to be that, I have to stop being several other things.
I have to stop being a constant movie watcher. I have to stop being such a devoted lover. I have to stop making a list of other people happy before I have made myself happy. I have to be alone. I have to think and then feel, and then think about what I feel. And why I feel it. The Stirrings have to return. The Restlessness has to return. The desire to go adventuring must return. I must own myself again. And then, once that is accounted for, I must pick up my pen. And I must write.