So, it’s been a long time now. I’ve tried to write a new post more times than I can count, something grand and wonderful, recapping the former year and hoisting the sails for the next, but it seems there’s always too much to do, and too little attention span available.
Why should this be any different? I’ll tell you why: because when I’m done typing, I’m going to push “publish.” If that means this cuts off somewhere, I’m sorry. Really, that’s not necessary out of step for my personality. Do you remember that Simpsons episode where Mr. Burns brings in Grandpa Simpson and some other gangbusters in to break up the protest around the nuclear plant? His main tactics involve telling stories that go no where–like that time he had an onion tied to his belt. I’m a little bit that way too; no, I don’t have an onion tied to my belt, but there was this one time…
For those of you that read my blog over the past year, you’ll have seen a bit of a movement from defeatism to self-reflection, and from daydreaming to seizing the day. And then…nothing for nearly six months. Nothing but a re-post and updating on a piece from December 2013 on where I thought Sons of Anarchy was going to end up, based on Hamlet, and an analysis of how well my predictions went, following the finale. While the prediction article proved to be my most popular post ever, drawing in tens of thousands of visits from Google in just a couple of months, I couldn’t help but feel like a bit of a fraud; after all, it was a [shudder] re-post. It seemed I had lost the vim and vigor that kept me, and the blog, going.
A lot of the reasons behind this are personal–so try to keep them between us, if you would.
Finances have been a struggle since the day I left university, and the addition of a house and kids only makes that harder. While things are starting to look a bit sunnier now, it’s been one of the toughest years my wife and I have ever been through financially, and there is no part of our lives that hasn’t been affected by that stress.
Mental health has been an issue, as I have struggled not only with financial strain, but issues with my family, including a set of estranged parents, and even with my own body, as I struggle to take off the weight that I’ve put on through the sleepless, stressful first years of my sons’ lives. Recovery is always slow and difficult with all things mental, and I liken it to trying to live in a house while gutting and renovating it. After all, you can’t really get outside of your own head, can you?
I’d be lying if I didn’t include jealousy and intimidation, as well. There is a wonderful community of Dad Bloggers out there, who are (by and large) warm, supportive men. They are also a bunch of successful jerks (I kid, but I don’t). There are so many great bloggers out there, even in my very niche, that seem to be doing the job better than I am, and finding more success doing it. Though I try not judge myself against the successes of others and be overwhelmed, it’s hard not to.
So what’s changed? Nothing drastic, surely. But maybe there’s a slow growth there, a vine pushing up toward the sunlight. As I watch my little hobbits grow larger and ever brighter, and push myself back into the light from the darkness, I reach for my pen.
Ego sum. Hic sol venit.
Welcome, belatedly, to 2015.