Blog post number 351: Bam!
Every day, after I hesitantly press the coded “PUBLISH” button on my WordPress’ dashboard, I wait for the website’s quirky exclamations to appear on my screen:
Right on! Bonanza!
Bingo! Superb! Fab!
At least half a year ago, I stopped noting each post’s number; and as of recently, I’ve also lost my addiction to the stats columns. It’s not that I’m indifferent toward my readership, in any way: No sir! I just don’t have any time in the day to check my numbers as religiously as the newbie-blogger me used to do, a mere year ago. So: I just collect the praises.
Besides, even if I have checked the stats, wake me up in the morn’ — and I won’t remember a thing about them. Instead, I could tell you plenty about the remote neighborhoods of LA-LA for whose visit I’ve had to borrow Superman’s cape, so that I would beat the traffic and be on time, along with all the other pros. For a while, in the hours of the next day, I can recall the hustle of the previous one: the projects that I’ve pursued, the people who have delighted me; the coffee shops at which I published in between my commitments; the anxieties, the victories; the tiny defeats and inspirations. But by the end of the week, the memory gives way to the nearest ones — of mostly yesterday.
Truth be told, I don’t even recall what I’ve written just two days ago. Therein must lie the cathartic charm of art: For once the written word leaves my laptop and leaps into the mysterious vortex of the internet, I have already lived it out completely. I’ve let it go, you see, with more grace than I’ve ever practiced in any of my relationships.
And in the entire 351-day history of my blogging, I’ve returned to stories — to rewrite their endings or to keep telling them — in all of five times. I just don’t do that, I guess: Once I hit “PUBLISH”, the story gains a life of its own; and I allow for its destiny to determine where in the world it flies and whom in the world it reaches:
Looking back on the year of daily blogging, I myself must admit that I had absolutely no idea as to what this writing adventure would turn out to be. First, there would be the technical challenges of course: Learning the sites, studying the patterns and manners of other bloggers, upgrading my own computer, and eventually narrowing down my art’s topic — while in the process of doing it.
But those, I immediately saw as the perfect excuses to learn: To step out of the fearful pattern of my mind and to submit myself — to change. In the end, as even back then I already knew, it would be rewarding. And I was right: It has been. And it deserves praise.
The personal challenges that came with my now spoken — better yet, written — desire to have a public persona, I could NOT have foreseen. When at first, the opinions of readers and friends began flooding in, I was thrilled. But it wouldn’t be too long before I began hearing criticisms and watching how my friendships started redefining themselves. At first, I geared-up with my anti-hating campaigns and googled other artists opinions on the matter. But then, eventually, the angst ran out.
And it hasn’t been a surprising discovery that I have never complained about having to publish on any given day. What I’ve been practicing — is a privilege to live in art; and the discipline of its pursuit has never gotten in my way.
And speaking of discipline: This year, I have discovered it to be THE grace of all other working artists. Those who succeed the most, work the most (and, therefore, fail the most, too).
And actually, no matter the hustles of each day, discipline indeed turns out to be my saving grace: It gives me a reason to be, despite the failures.
So, it’s been one challenging year, because its every day I’ve spent creating. And after all that shedding — the mourning, the flailing, the pleading, the lashing out; the learning, the changing; the growth; the acceptance — I am proud to find myself in a place of surrender. Because no matter all other circumstances, I do this — because I must. Because to do anything else — would be dishonest.
And so I allow for the world to happen, while I continue to happen — to it.
And also, I allow for its praise: