Aside from my few recent posts, I took a long ol’ hiatus from blogging. I was:
- going through a massive restructuring in my mind about what I’m capable of;
- sick of obsessing over my piddly stats and the fact that only two people on average “like” my posts;
- asking myself why the hell anyone would give a rats ass about my life.
I can make all sorts of excuses, but the reality is that being openly creative scares me. I wish it didn’t, but there it is, even after all that I’ve said here in this blog. Even after saying this very thing repeatedly.
I’m reading a book called “In Search of a Woman’s Passionate Soul”. In it, the author points out that we live in an entirely new paradigm of creativity and expression, and women historically haven’t been given the societal tools to really cultivate their own sense of self-expression. We’ve traditionally been reduced to either sexual objects or mothers of care, leaving little room for us to creatively explore our own reality, no less be acknowledged for it.
And even nowadays, when it seems the world of creativity has broken open for us, we’re sometimes still relegated to a sort of women’s genre. I recall a post by Belle Jar, for example, that discusses the fact that women authors are often reduced to a special category of literature – “lady books” for a “lady agenda”. I also just read a headline that women continue to be totally under-represented in movie direction, representing only 9% of directors in Hollywood. Apparently this is a drop from what it has been, which is puzzling…aren’t we women at a point of being creatively equal with our male counterparts? Can’t we move on now?
We women are in a brave new world – and it is up to us to forge new paths of creativity and artistic expression, just as those before us baby-stepped to suffrage and equal pay. To acknowledge that this is not easy, and that we don’t have a manual, is already allowing us to emotionally separate ourselves from archaic ideas around what is is to be a woman in her own right. It is helpful, and even encouraging to know that we are pioneers of a new world between men, women and the intellectual pursuit. This is not an easy game to navigate. It’s a foundation that is constantly shifting beneath us.
And just as women are entering new territory with each new generation, we are all entering an entirely new, whacked out world of instant, online self-expression. Social media has served to rip us from our creative slumber, sit us in front of a device and instantly pound out what we think and feel about the world around us. Yesterday I read this post by Candidly Bleu, where she discusses the sort of bland stuff a lot of us put out there. Now, it struck a chord with me, and perhaps I was too harsh in my comment, but it’s as I said there:
We are all learning how to navigate this new world of social media and self expression. A lot of what is out there is indeed insipid, vapid, narcissistic drivel. I know I’m guilty of this when I lazily pound out words without with much forethought for the reader. I do understand what she’s saying completely, and I won’t say I haven’t rolled my eyes at some of the stuff that gets put out there. Hell, I’ve rolled my eyes at my own posts from the past. I guess that’s just growing.
The point is that in this explosion of drivel comes millions of individuals to the creative table, paint brushes in hand, to have a go at what it’s like to be expressive. Someone’s drivel is another’s inspiration. And while that leaves a lot of the responsibility on the reader to sort through a mountainous pile of mundane to find the magnificent, that’s a responsibility I’m willing to step up to.
I’m just going to keep going and going and going until I choke on my own words, because after all, I am someone that has the FREEDOM to express myself – as a women and as a human being. I may not be brilliant or have the vocabulary of a literary genius, but I’m here. I showed up, and that takes guts. And if I can inspire one person to stand up to the plate and express herself for whatever reason, I’m very pleased.
We need to speak up, all of us. The world’s collective mentality is practically going bonkers with all of our thoughts – but let it. Let it have a total mind fuck at its own liberty. Because you know what? Maybe just maybe we’ll learn to listen and understand each other better, and maybe just maybe we’ll learn to truly enjoy – en masse – the intrinsic thrill of creativity.