I Can’t Write

Hi chaps. Since I last spoke to you, London burned, I turned 26, I had my disabled students’ assessment (ah, a side of you you abandon, and then when you need to revisit it you realise how much the glove still fits), I went to Madrid and to the pub for the first time in many months.

Excuse the quietness both here and on my website. I have been struggling to write for a while now. I don’t even have many ideas. I had a lot to say about the riots but due to social media, news moving so fast, everything I had to say ended up being said. I still want to say it but it feels irrelevant.

A combination of many things, I imagine; a wireless connection (and streaming telly), having been busy with work (which is no more as I start university) and possibly the Lamictal stupids. I often get writers’ block, struggle with my concentration, or become exhausted writing about my own life. The balance between what I am comfortable sharing and what I feel is helpful to share is a tricky one. Sometimes I don’t want to share, but I do, I do want to share- not myself, but the joys, the pains, opinions, the human things, intellectual things, silly things. I am a hermit. So I share by writing.

This time feels significantly different. I’m not sure why. I have been fine for a long time, I am content now to sit and watch rubbish or lie still, when I have rarely been in my life. To lie still before was the stillness of death and depression, and to be still is not my natural way. It is wholly unnatural, though not unpleasant. I am fine, but flat, and I feel it. My brain is not racing, it is quiet. It is not dead, dumb or empty, just quiet. I’m not used to that at all. My mind isn’t restless, but I am, for something, to do something, to write. I sit and try and sweat with the effort. I’ve never had the discipline but I want it now, more than ever. I am going to instill it in myself, because if it doesn’t work, then what? I am struggling to find the words- I keep repeating myself, my vocabulary seems to have shrivelled. It’s melodramatic but I understand those I used to think as glamourising, glorifying imbeciles who said they had lost themselves, lost part of themselves, when they became stable. Because I have lost a part of myself too. I am trying to force myself to write. But I feel such grief at this realisation. Maybe it’s not my magic power. Maybe it comes from somewhere that is, for now, closed from me, to give me time to live in other ways. But I have lived through this. Something is gone. I hope it is not forever.

I don’t even feel as though I can call myself a writer anymore. Maybe I never was one, I have never really had much faith in myself in that respect. And maybe that’s why- I didn’t write a book when I had the chance, I haven’t taken the chances I’ve had, I haven’t exploited things or pursued them. Maybe I subconsciously feel that a writer would do those things, and I didn’t. Or that I just gave up and decided to be a nurse instead, as if, “instead” mattered. I know I can be both, if I want.

That’s why I’ve been quiet. I start university next week, so I may be quieter still. Take care chaps!

(PS: I’m aware some people may go, “Oh but you can!” But I’m mostly talking about the physical, blank, draining, difficult effort of actually doing it, which is not something I have really experienced before. Struggled and stuff, but the words came easy enough. My confidence just might be severely knocked or something- I don’t know. “Don’t knowing” is what is annoying me, too).

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