too little, too much

I’ve been looking forward to writing. Hopefully this curbs that itch.

         It took thirty minutes to come up with a name. Too long, unoriginal, already taken, didn’t sound good, whatever. I came up with this, and I loved it. But of course I couldn’t take the “official” url minus the extra “a” because some blog from 2008 had already taken it, and in the nine years their blog has existed, they’ve only made one post. Figures. Anyway, I was too attached to the word already, so I went through a little measure to make it work. I’d like to think the extra “a” adds a little bit of personality, but in all honesty it’ll probably just make the url harder to remember. Kind of like adding numbers and “xXx”s onto names when we couldn’t find juuust the right one years and years ago. As long as I like it and it’s not inappropriate or anything, though, it shouldn’t really matter what the name of the blog is.

ehos1vr

Though, as much as it just sounds pretty, I think it really does reflect how I feel. I came into this assignment with a ton of ideas. I jotted them down just so I wouldn’t forget in a few seconds and looked at inspiration from the list of posts that was posted on Canvas. I thought it sounded fun and that I’d have no trouble putting those ideas down. So I sat at my desk, got ready to write, and started typing out a sentence…

And I scrapped it.

I tried again.

Nope, that wouldn’t work.

I tried again.

Too short, doesn’t sound good.

I tried again.

….No beans.

I was just frustrated at that point. I had all that inspiration in the beginning, and if I didn’t have it anymore, then I must have been doing something wrong. I didn’t know how ambitious I needed to be to make it work, or how much effort I should’ve put in.

Too little was unacceptable. That was obvious. There’s nothing to show for your work, and everything trapped inside your brain struggling to come out might as well not exist to the world. It’s devoid of effort, of thought, and there’s no way you could possibly just show nothing.

Too much was undesirable. There’s a certain level of prose and preaching that one can handle before it becomes obvious that your head is in the clouds. Reach too far without looking where you’re grounded and you’ll find yourself tripping over your own feet while you were too pretentious, too confident in your own mind to see that people had lost you in your daze. I had those standards in my mind every time I was tasked with writing. I had to never allow myself to just slack off, but if I weren’t careful I’d come off as pretentious and wouldn’t deserve being taken seriously. Only if I meet those expectations could my writing be acceptable.

It sucked. It really did. There was logic in those guidelines I gave myself, but all it did was tear me apart. It didn’t help me, and I was just miserable trying to meet those expectations I set for myself. Because when you’re concerned about your performance, you start to pick at all the things you do wrong no matter how unreasonable.

That’s where the “fear of silence” comes in, I think. The fear of silence when you have nothing to say, or you can’t say anything. The fear of silence after you’re finished with something, the awkward kind where your audience was expecting something better but nobody wants to admit it.

I chose this name for a different reason, though. I thought it was nicely reflective of what writing is like. You speak because you want to be heard, you write because you can’t just keep your thoughts to yourself. It was a sort of muted fear that I had pictured when I picked the name – one that would concern you enough to convince you to do something, but not enough to risk breaking down and shutting yourself in.

Ultimately, that’s what I want to turn my fear into. A gentle push, rather than something that caves in on top of me. It might take me a month to get to that point, where mistakes are forgiven and worked through and not scorned. It might take me an entire lifetime. What matters, though, is that I give myself room to grow. As the beginning of this blog’s year, I’m excited to see what comes next.

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