I was dry.
I had put off writing this post until the end of the day, and so it was at 5pm on Friday after a long few days of technical work that I suddenly ran headlong into the self-imposed expectation: write a post about love.
More than that, of course: write a post about love that will help other people love more. That will inspire them to love better. That will help them love deeply.
And then the metaphorical Super-Ego me tapped his metaphorical fingers on the metaphorical table in my mind with a precise clicking sound. Any time, Gray. Clock’s a-tickin’.
But sitting in my Writing Chair, with my Writing Music on and my laptop in Writing Mode with the Writing Program the only thing to see…I couldn’t find a thing to write about.
The well had run dry. I checked my various list-taking programs and devices, no scribbled ideas for topics came to light. I looked through the recent newsletters, realizing that in my desperation I was not too proud to write something “in response to” or even “loosely based on.”
Finally I put my hands on my head, as if surrendering to the Content Creation Police, and closed my eyes. Miller! You have the right to remain silent. Even though you’re supposed to be writing a blog post about love. Any thing you do not say or do will be used against you in the court of your own self-worth. Do you have anything to say before we revoke your License to Blog?
That’s When It Hit Me
It’s the end of the year.
This is a content creator’s paradise! We have two gigantic topics to pick from: the Past and the Future, and then we just have to combine it with X, which is equal to three, five, or ten (not sure why, just trust me, those are the Magic Listicle Numbers).
I laughed (internally, because I don’t want to make Natasha nervous) as my fingers flew to the keyboard and manufactured my escape from the CCP. It was late, so I was going to go with the number three, and the Past takes less energy to imagine than the Future, so all I needed was a noun and a verb, and I was set: Three (Nouns) From 2017 That I (Verb).
Wait, should I do second person, change the “I” to a “You”? Or first person plural – “We”? Wait, maybe it’s safer (and less self-centered or presumptuous) to go with third person plural…no, that’s presumptuous too, and implies an Us-vs.-Them mentality that is one of the worst things about 2017 —
And there it is.
So I present to you the Love post for today on Love-Life-Practice:
Three Things from 2017 That We Could Do Without.
- Dichotomous Thinking: It’s not us or them. It’s not black or white. It’s not red or blue, or conservative or liberal. There’s a whole lot of frakkin’ gray out there, if you’ll pardon the pun, and even more spectra of color. If you hear someone say the phrase “It’s as simple as…” then you can be pretty sure it’s not. Look for the nuance, because otherwise somebody’s gonna get hurt.
- Fake You’s: Yes, it’s a play on words. It’s simply this: we need to be more honest with each other, especially on social media. There’s that whole idea about how it’s always the “highlight reel”, but that’s because no one wants to admit “I hate yoga” or “today kind of sucked” or “I’m depressed and scared and I don’t know how to ask for help.” If we’re going to decide to share ourselves with each other, let’s share our authentic selves, warts and all.
- Playing Nice: One of my favorite authors is currently planning to move to Canada because even with a full time job on top of a successful writing career she can’t afford medical insurance. Madison busses have white men verbally abusing Spanish speaking passengers. Arizona actually tried to sue to keep a Hispanic-American Studies course from being taught, and the Center for Disease Control can’t use the phrase “science-based”. And that’s just this month. The time for trying to be nice and polite to hateful ideas is over. The time of overlooking microagressions is done. The saying is right: If you see something, say something. Here’s a useful guide for how to do that.
What’s Love Got to Do With It?
Simple enough: if we are our authentic selves, embracing nuance and diversity as we actively work to reduce the harm done in the world…
…won’t that just be lovely?