Tuesday, February 15, 2011

To Write or Not to Write

How much ego does one have to have to write about themselves?  I never thought of myself as necessarily egomaniacal, but on the other hand sometimes I think I'm pretty cool.  I'm not sure that means I have a big ego though because just when I start to think "yeah I'm alright," I get a big case of self conscious or someone knocks me back to reality.  It could be anyone, it could be on purpose, it could be completely accidental.  And whenever it happens, I think of something my dad said to me once.  I went to my parents house after work that day.   I felt like a million bucks.  I loved my outfit, I loved my hair, I felt so good and it showed.  When I was leaving work that day and walking to my car a man stopped me and said, "excuse me, but are you a model?"  And I thought I already felt good!   Validated.  It was fantastic.  Then I got to my parents house and, still reveling in how good I felt I told them what the man said to me.  My dad's response, in complete seriousness was, "Was he blind?"  That's all it took to undo the good feeling I had all day.

Three words.  That's all it took.   It happens fast, that trip from the top of the world to the bottom of the shit pile.  Maybe a few words like my dad's do it.  Maybe an email complaint I get because someone doesn't agree with my opinion.   Maybe a sideways glance in the mirror at the wrong angle.  And then I wonder, why would anyone want to read anything I have to say?  Who the fuck am I?  What makes my stories any more interesting than anyone else's?   Well, maybe they aren't.  But there is one thing I always am when I write... true to me.  If you haven't liked a post or more, that's OK.  I can only be true to me.  I learned a long time ago that you cannot please everyone so don't even try.  And I don't.  Instead I keep these words in mind that someone I care about told me, "If you write it, you own it.  It's yours."  Once I do that, it's out there, no going back, no regrets.  I own it, for better or for worse.

And so again I wonder, why am I writing this blog?  When I started it I was inspired by several things.  One was friends illness that woke me up to the fact that at any time your life can change drastically without warning.  If that happened to me, what's my legacy?  And now that I think about that again, is a blog with my goofy stories a legacy?  I guess it is, in some odd way.   My other inspiration was a friend with a writing talent that moves me and evokes feelings in me when I read something he wrote.  Moved in a good way, or in a bad way, it doesn't matter.  Being moved does.  When someone can do that with written word, it's pretty special.  I didn't fancy that I could do that, but I wanted to try.  And something really amazing happened.  I love what I'm doing here.  I love my voice.  I love what I have to say.  I love having a place to say it.  I hope you do too.  And I thank those two special people for inspiring me in two completely different ways.

"Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind." ~ Dr. Seuss


  1. I've always enjoyed your writing over the years and have really enjoyed the posts I've read in this blog. I definitely think you have always had a great voice.

    I'm happy to know I've inspired you...I'm assuming I'm one of the two and have to say my illness has made me think long and hard about my legacy. One thing that has surprised me was to find out how many people love me and whose lives I've affected just by being me. Can't think of a better way to say it, so I hope that makes sense. Also, I have found how to enjoy the moment and I'm looking forward to enjoy lots more moments when I retire in 36 more working days...but whose counting! :)

  2. Yes it is you Jackie, and you make perfect sense :) xoxo

  3. I absolutely cannot believe what your dad said to you that day and I'm so glad you were able to find motivation outside of that. Death is a motivational factor for me too. It seems like death is all around me here in Huancayo, reminding me to not take life or my dreams for granted.

    So glad you chose to write, Lalia! =)

  4. Ah self-esteem, it's such a precarious thing. Isn't it? I think it's fine until we compare ourself to someone else. Writing- I think it's somehow affirming. And seeing it published in some form, even as a blog, is fun.
    Keep writing!
    Josie x

  5. Hi Lalia -

    I have a theory about blogging that I will share with you. It has a lot to do with all the decisions we make in life. It's not so important why you starting writing and blogging, what is most important and special is why you continue to do it. What are the factors that drive us to write more and more? Cool, huh! :)

  6. Sometimes I feel like this little balloon of emotion and self esteem and the world is full of people holding pins. Stay true to you and do what feels right.
    ~cath xo
    @jonesbabie on Twitter

  7. Most people need a boost of self-confidence, and three little words can bring whatever we have achieved tumbling down. People will say, don't pay attention and to ignore comments that affect us adversely but, come on, we're human and vulnerable as to our appearance, our achievements and often, our writing.

    To write about ourselves is not egotistic. It can be sharing of a mutual problem, airing our griefs and finding others with similar ones, looking for help, or plain old self-therapy. I've always been told that writers should have thick skins and learn to take criticism and rejection as part of the trade, but the truth is that writers are more often sensitive, thin-skinned, vulnerable to criticism, retreating into their shells kind of people whose best outlet is in the written word. If you don't like what I write about myself, then that's your problem, not mine. a) Don't read it, b( Don't bother me about it if you do, c) Have the decency to respect my right to write about myself in any way that want to. Last, mind your own f,,,,,,, business.