I have struggled with the idea of writer’s block for years. Writer’s block for me comes when I sit down with the idea of wanting to write but draw a complete blank. My mind seems empty; no ideas come to the surface and no thoughts. I do what any normal person would do, get up to do something else. Thereby letting days, months and even years flow by without a finished product.
Oddly enough for years I have maintained a journal. I write in my journal almost every day. There have been times when I’ve just thrown old diaries away for fear that someone would read them and see how I really feel about them. Journaling has been a personal expression of how I’m feeling and what is going on at my life at the time. The other day I came to the conclusion I am experiencing something other than a writer’s block. My fear comes from how I will be received. I wonder if people will approve of my thoughts and if anyone can relate to them. It’s as if I am waiting on a thumb up but too scared to ask for it.
I remember writing in my diary when I was younger. I was in the fourth grade and my brother found my diary. After he read it, he gave it to my mother to read too. My mother proceeded to read it in front of both of us. I felt so embarrassed and violated. I didn’t even know what violation really meant until that moment. She had a scowling look on her face. Her eyebrows were raised and her lip was slightly curled. Then out of nowhere this intense laughter roared out of her body. But I wasn’t amused. My brother sat soaking it all in, enjoying the look of pain on my face.
At the time I didn’t care for my mom much so I’m sure she was reading all my evil thoughts about her at the time. I probably wanted to do to her all the things I’d lined my diary with. I was a kid but I watched a lot of Looney Tunes and GI Joe at the time. I wanted to “Yo Joe” right on her head. Or reenact a scene of dropping an anvil on her head like they did in the cartoons. However, all I could only sit in silence vowing to never to write again.
I did write again. I couldn’t help it. Writing for me has always been a form of therapy. I didn’t come from a house of communicators. We just didn’t communicate well. We couldn’t freely express how we felt without repercussions. It seemed easier to write and keep my thoughts hidden.
I have written short stories, poems and even tried my hand at a novel or two but have never gotten too far. The things I wrote I would trash at a later date mentally telling myself I would just come up with something better next time. Until this blog I have never shared to the outside world what’s going on in my inside world. So this is a big step for me.
Even though I started this blog months ago at some point it seemed appropriate to take a hiatus. I told myself it was that pesky writers block. Yet my pen keeps calling me. I think what I really have is a case of fear. Maybe I’ll keep struggling with it or maybe one day I’ll finally move from behind it and allow what’s written in the dark to come to light. Maybe there are people who can relate to my experiences and won’t think I’m weird or dark. Maybe I can get pass the block of being embarrassed and motionless waiting for an approval.