April 17, 2013

Additional Chances

I was going through my GReader (soon to be RIP) and was reading Patrick Rothfuss' blog and his post on second chances inspired me to finally get something down.

But first, I should probably come to terms with the fact that this blog has disintegrated into a personal re-hashing space. I originally started it with the idea that it would provide useful commentary on the interesting things that I do and experience. And it still could be a sort of review spot, where I list all of the events, books, movies, and games that I've gone through, but since I have a bit of a completionist streak, I'd want EVERYTHING to be put down. I read six books on vacation last week, which is more than I've read in the last six months. I spent a lot of time in planes and a lot of time lounging by the pool/beach and I am so glad that I got a Paperwhite to make reading in the bright sun possible. I'm sure I could lump the book reviews into one post, and there are a few in there that are worth mentioning, but some of them were pretty lame.

Probably the one I liked the most was called To Have and To Code, which is a completely stupid title and had a somewhat confusing alt world where witches existed. And yes, it was a contemporary romance novel, but several times it hit me right in the feels. Which is probably why I continue reading them for fun.

Okay, back on topic. Originally, it seemed like a cop out to just write about personal stuff, especially since I don't go into specifics and use initials. It's like VagueBooking. But I've come to grips with the fact that this blog is mostly for me and always has been. I'm someone who doesn't usually think about things too deeply, but I'm a careful writer, in the sense that I re-read what I write, multiple times, and spend a lot of time thinking about what I actually want to say. So when something's been kicking around in my head with half formed opinions and ideas, the only way for me to muddle through it is to write it down, sentence by sentence, the way I used to write my school papers. Otherwise I just can't let go of it. It makes me feel better when it's been written down, documented, analyzed, and it feels final, something "physical" I can point people to. One of the reasons why I like having SOPs, I'm offloading my knowledge and never have to worry about forgetting some key step because I've written it down. Also, I love when someone asks me about a process or has a question and I can point them to a SOP I've written months and years ago. Now that's efficient.

But I haven't really openly advertized this blog. I somewhat recently went through and added it as a link to a few of my profiles, and while yes, I'm an attention whore and like compliments, it crosses some line for me to actively try to get people to read about what I'm thinking. But I would be the first to say that I love reading about other people's lives, especially those that I know. The little window to get inside their head is always interesting, which I guess, is a small part of the reason why I keep this online instead of offline.

My old blog from my college years was full of angst and lots and lots of posts on random stuff, I truly used that as more of a journal, since that was kind of back when Facebook was just starting up. Now I can document the funny or interesting things that happen to me on a daily basis in chunks, which pretty much just leaves this for introspection. I always think I'll go back some day and re-read posts from that era, but I tried that with a journal I kept in elementary/middle school and omg I just wanted to burn it. It was so embarrassing. I think luckily, since then, my writing has improved and I'm a lot less whiny and even more surprisingly, some of the things I've re-read I've been shocked that I actually wrote it. Which then begs the question, am I a worse writer now than I was back then? Has the creative and interesting writing been smothered by lack of writing/being too efficient? When I write creatively, I find I have to go back over and over again to fill in details and flesh out moments. Writing in a torrent has never been my style but I'm worried that I've forgotten how to make a piece of writing fun and interesting to read. Structured writing is clean and has its own style of beauty, but it's also not usually easy and fun to breeze through while on the beach. Anyway, the solution is probably just to write more creative pieces and then getting into that mindset of being loose and easy with my words will come more naturally.

Now, back to what I originally wanted to write this post about - having additional chances that I don't deserve. I find that recently I've been constantly trying to remind myself of how fortunate I am and imagining what my life looks like from an outside perspective. Some things just look better in print you know? But it's hard for it to sink in because it's not something that I feel in my heart, but that I know in my head. The one thing that I have been grateful for is additional chances. Times when I've been able try again and use the past mistakes to be better and do better instead of having them hold me back.

Adventures and vacations end. They must, and you know from the beginning that they will. It's easy to know in your head that there'll be other adventures and other vacations, but it's difficult to know in your heart that you'll ever feel the same thrill or sense of contentment that you have. I think that's what makes letting go and coming back to routine tough. No matter how many pictures you took, or souvenirs you acquired, you can never have that exact feeling. The memories are there, the impressions of how it felt, but the raw emotion...that is fleeting. All we can do is strive towards the next moment and savor each moment and the feelings it brings.

Or until technology catches up and we can have feelies.