I was writing to a friend tonight via quick email about blogging. I wrote...
I put myself out there everyday and write about some pretty embarrassing stuff. Somehow I cannot draw a line between what is appropriate and not appropriate to share. I can't believe I divulge all that in this moment of lucidity I am having now. I don't understand why I let my readership know how helpless I am and how dependent upon my family I am. They will only know what I write. It's disturbing to me. It invites derision. I've thought about quitting blogging, pondering over it intensely. A long time friend quit online journaling tonight and it made me ponder... "Can I live without journaling?" "Do I live for comments?" "Should a simple pen and paper journal suffice?" "Why do I feel the need to share such intimate details of my life with total strangers?"
I get so much advice from well meaning people (and it is appreciated for the most part). The same drum is beaten over and over though. Take your meds. Take your meds. Take your meds. They don't understand my reality. I take nine pills a night. My head is swimming in mind altering chemicals to where I don't know who the real Andrew is. I've lost me. When I was un-medicated at least I knew what to expect. Paranoia. Delusions. Hallucinations. But it was real and not some chemically induced candyland for what ails me. I long to be alive, sexual, emotionally vibrant. As it stands now, I am flat -- a cardboard cutout of a human being. It is sad and disparaging. I don't know what to do, but it is my life. Life is precious and you only get one chance. I don't believe in reincarnation and I don't want mine to pass me by. I would rather have a thousand schizophrenic nights than a single night of drugged complacency as if I am constantly in a stupor. The drugs destroy my creativity and my personality. They have taken away my sexuality and my manhood. My mental illness has also severed the bonds to the people who read my blog and I am pitied. It is so frustrating!
My friend emailed me back and suggested I take a break from blogging to gather myself so I won't post such personal stuff throughout this time of coming off my medications. I live to write though. My days are spent writing and editing what I write. I do believe that online journaling was one of the best things I have ever found despite all its warts: The incessant well meaning advice -- the negative anonymous yahoos who spill their bile all over my blog. There are good things, too! Emails from people who get it about mental illness -- people who are not on the outside looking in. Wonderful people I've met and to whom I've aspired to emulate. The vibrant online communities that sprout up around blogs and their readers like a garden of growth.
It still amazes me people want to read what I write. I am in awe and humbled and thankful. It makes me want to write forever and onwards like some addiction -- like some adulterous joy. Maybe that's why I blog. The friendship. The camaraderie. The adulation for my writing and artistic endeavors. Friendships don't come easy for me and I have found a safe place to harbor them -- a detached kind of friendship where I can be anyone and anything. An everyman. To bad I blather on about my problems. Think of what this blog could be if I didn't write about alcoholism, or mental illness! If I portray to the world a healthy, happy writer who shared his simple tales, I would have been published by now. I harbor deep regrets for the callousness with which I've handled this online journal -- always airing dirty laundry like some gossiping spinster. Embarrassing myself and my family.
My good and very cherished friend, Pipe Tobacco, harps about moderation being the key for me. But I have to ask, "Would a moderate me really be me?" I wouldn't display or have that same intense passion and zeal I have for things, writing, and life if I were middle-of-the-road. This blog would be just another milquetoast rendition of daily life of which there are millions to read. I would be swimming and writing in a sea of banality and blandness. It is something to ponder over. Good night as I go burn my candle at both ends.