It has been 302 days since my last blog post; 143 days since I started losing my ongoing battle with depression; and at least 50 days since I’ve had any enthusiasm or energy for adventure. Anyone reading this, who knows me, even a little, knows how tragic that sentence feels being typed through my fingers. I used to live for adventure. Fuck, I used to believe that I WAS adventure. But then came this year. Damn, this year. This fucking year. It has really done a number on me. Incredibly difficult, terrible, and so completely different from what I expected going into it. 2019 was filled with many challenging decisions I didn’t know I would have to make. This year was loaded with demanding days and lonely, heartbreaking nights. For the majority of this year, my emotions have felt stale—empty. Ironically, much like my blog. And if I am really being honest, this year was the year that almost broke me.
This morning, I woke up and deleted the 3,581-word post I had recently completed for this much overdue blog update. In it, I shared all the intimate details about how difficult this particular year has been versus others. I talked about how each small stumble seemed to pull me further and further behind where I felt I should be. I touched on opting out of things I was once enthusiastic to be involved in, letting go of people and friendships only because I didn’t know how to deal with my own emotions, and failing my bosses and company by letting my mental illness hold complete power over me and my decision making. The post dove deep into the swamps of sadness that I have been trapped in for the past 365 days. But even though every word of that post was true, the thought of hitting publish just didn’t feel right. So instead, I woke up today and did the truest and most bold thing I could think of doing… I hit delete. I deleted it all, every last word. Somehow, by doing so, I almost felt like a weight was lifted. Like I was making a decision to move forward, to say goodbye, and start something new.
Maybe I’m crazy. Okay, let’s be real, I am definitely crazy. There is no denying that. But just try to look beyond my crazed dilutions for a moment and level with me. Somehow deleting that post and the simple words “start something new” is what encouraged me to put new paragraphs down onto this recently blank page—and that’s what I’m moving towards. Anything new that feels remotely exciting. Anything that helps me continue to put one foot (or finger in this case) in front of the other.
Okay, let’s back up for a minute. When I first started this blog, I couldn’t stop working on it. I spent hours making lists of what topics to touch on, layouts to use, how to size my photos and, of course, writing – hours and hours of writing. I absolutely loved it. It was everything I needed in my life at the time. I incorporated this blogging structure into so many different areas. Travel, races, music, even recipes I prepared were all tailored around this little piece of internet real estate that held so dear to my heart. And now, I just don’t. But why? Well, I can’t say for sure what stopped me, but I do have a few suspicions. The internet, specifically social media as a whole, hasn’t felt like a fun place to hang out with friends the way it once did to me. I used to open up new browser tabs and visit people’s profiles like I was walking into their homes and taking in their unique smell. I’d get a glimpse into their life updates, struggles, bits of advice, and then walk away feeling like I knew a little more about them as a person. Now, it feels like every platform (blogs, social, etc.) is a place for people to pretend life is nothing but glamorous and perfect. I honestly cringe at how shallow some posts (mine included) have become. Nothing but exaggerated travel photos & narcissistic captions. Every day without even realizing it, we are being told whether it be by our peers or our own subconscious that we need to: build, grow, travel, make money, be athletic, be authentic, be bold, be beautiful, and somehow have all the answers. We need to be perfect at everything. But it’s just not fun anymore.
I don’t want to be perfect.
I just want to be human.
Well, I finally realized that these types of things are severely affecting my mental health, and I need to cut them from my life. It is for that exact reason, I considered walking away from this blog completely. To say goodbye to an outlet that ultimately changed my career path and my entire life. Although the last few months of 2019 have been very life-changing, in the end, I can see, they have been extremely important in my development as a person. A lot of things happened that will prepare me for the next chapter of my life. So rather than faulting and throwing away something that once brought me so much joy, perhaps I will just try to rebrand and start fresh. A new and clean slate.
So where do I go from here? Well, moving forward I want to turn my main focus back to the most important thing in my life, me. I’m going to wake up and enjoy my mornings, with coffee in one hand and a journal in the other. If something to write about comes along, it comes, but if it doesn’t, well… that’s okay too. I’m also going to continue to go for long hikes, travels, and spend as much time in nature as possible. Only now, I’m not going to feel the need to take pictures or write about it as proof. I’m going to learn what it is to go through an experience and not wonder which parts would fit best into a social or blog post to increase engagement. I’m going to have regular days, big days, happy days and sad days, but I will no longer feel it necessary to share every detail. I will hopefully, at some point start to date again and celebrate milestones with the important people who have chosen to stay by my side. I will hopefully learn to live and not share every detail anymore and instead just be a happy human in this world. Stay tuned…