January 21, 2008

Inspiration...and the lack thereof

As you may or may not have figured out by now, I enjoy writing. I write stories, short stories, and poetry. I've generally been much more prolific with my poetry. Lately, though, I just can't come up with anything. I'm surrounded by the beauty of nature, the beauty of my children, my family, my home, friends and just the general beauty of life. And yet...nothing.

I sit down with pen and paper, and if I'm lucky, a line or two will dribble forth as water from a nearly but not quite frozen pipe. I'll feel the poem building like storm clouds in a Florida summer sky, but like those same clouds in recent times, nothing seems to fall from that building sensation. I end up sitting there, feeling abandoned by my ability and hating the feeling.

I used to be able to sit down and bang out a rather decent poem in 20-30 minutes, one that often made family and friends have a tear or two in their eyes, and even on occasion, had some asking to use said poem in a wedding ceremony, for an anniversary, or what have you. This complete lack of inspiration has me stymied.

It's just beyond me that after years of writing poetry about so many things, about love, and life, and abuse, and children, and everything else, that I just can't do it anymore. And I think maybe that's what bothers me the most...that this lack may not be just a temporary block, but a permanent end to my writing days. And that doesn't just bother me...it scares me.

I have other hobbies and talents, yes. But this is the one that has always been there, that I've always turned to, that I've been able to do anytime, anywhere. It's the one that has always helped me work my feelings out, sort myself out, express myself and show people what I'm feeling at any given time. And now, what do I do?

I think I've found an answer. One of my other big hobbies is photography. I'm actually kind of the family photographer. I use my digital camera to do my family's photo every year, and my son's school photos. I seem to have a knack for catching people in natural poses and coming out with an awesome photo. I enjoy taking pictures of nature, too, and just any little thing that grabs my curiousity at a given time. So...I think I shall start carrying my camera with me everywhere, and see what develops. Sorry...bad joke. Seriously, though, I've given this quite a bit of thought recently, and I'm thinking this may be a sign telling me to embrace this hobby a bit more fully than I have in the past. I've generally just used it to capture my children, to make concrete memories that will never fade. I've only sometimes used it to capture nature, and other things. I feel that maybe this is a knock on the door from opportunity, telling me to use this lack of inspiration to create other art. I've always been a creative person, and desperately need that creative outlet. Photography may be the way to keep that outlet open.

On a different note, have you ever suddenly seen someone you thought you knew pretty well in a completely different way, and it made you feel...I don't know, just very differently about them? I recently had that experience. Someone I'd known for a while now, nice guy. Someone I'd always thought was a pretty decent kind of guy. He was former military, which almost always means good guy. He was the kind of guy you can see yourself dating, but you hold off on because you don't want to lose the friendship. He knows of my woes with my ex-husband, and has often told me what he thinks of my ex. He often expounds on his theories of men who don't care for their children, take responsibility for their families, etc. He has a child himself, has shown me the pics. Cute little girl, too.

So he tells me he's finally gotten around to creating a MySpace page. He wants me to check it out and give him some feedback. So, I go, I check out, and not bad. then I get to the bottom where you do a little fill-in-the-blank on your basic stats. Under children, he puts "Someday". Huh? He's got this little girl, she's, I don't know, 3 or 4, around my son's age, and he doesn't acknowledge her in his MySpace profile? The same guy who tells me what an ass my ex-husband is for not taking care of my kids(which he is, but...) is now not acknowledging his child? I, with my big mouth and my inability to shut it sometimes, ask him what's up here. He says he doesn't want to chase women away. Hmmm...yes, I run screaming into the night when I find a nice guy who takes care of his responsibilities and is proud of that. I always avoid the men who take care of their kids, because God knows no one wants a man who's being decent.

This has been an enlightening experience for me. Don't get me wrong, I'm not perfect. But I try really damn hard not to be a hypocrite, and finding out that my friend is one is...difficult. It has me wondering if I can continue this friendship. It's not exactly a betrayal to me, but it is...something. It's a side of him that I never thought I'd see, and definitely not one I wanted to see. I just feel that it's not something that I can just overlook. And the saddest part is that it has me wondering just how many of my other friends are just as hypocritical, lying about who and what they are to others, just to make a different impression. Notice I said different, not better.

I'm just completely disgusted with the world tonight.

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