I've been trying very hard to get back to it, as much as I can, because I've realized that without my writing, my thoughts continue to circle in my head like water above a drain. However, without my writing, the drain is clogged and the water forever circles--lost to its final destination.
I'm trying to cope with my lack of verbal communication as of late... but I must admit, it's startling how difficult it is for me. I've been enamored with the decrease in telephone conversations over the years, because it opens the door for written conversations--albeit in text format--a manner of which I am much more capable to express myself. Please, don't make me talk to you because I can't. I close up, I shut down. I am verbally useless, regardless of how many sentences are floating around in my head, screaming to be let out. Perhaps that is why I always enjoyed the theater work--it gave my voice a voice, as it were. The words were there, already written, for me to say. It bypassed my mental shutoff valve.
It's a writer's curse, I believe. Some people use music to express themselves. Some people use a canvas. We use the written word. Many assume that because we work with words that it automatically makes us great communicators. That simply isn't true. I have met many a writer who is uncapable of proper, face to face interaction. The cliche that writers are recluses who hide in dark rooms, surrounded by pages upon pages of written word and crumpled papers, cut off from society, is not far off. A bit dramatic, perhaps, and aged in its visionary, but all the same. It had to come from somewhere.
In short, we suck at being open to verbal communication.
That isn't to say we don't communicate.
Just not in a format which 'normal' people would be accustomed to. Our problems tend to manifest in our work. Our characters act out our impulses, our desires, our complications. We solve our dilemmas by forcing them upon our characters, upon our pages. By seeing someone else react to our own issues, it can shine a light upon our necessary path and allow us to work out issues in our own way.
When we cannot write, these issues compound. They amass and we are generally unable to cope. It is a struggle that is not uncommon, as the written word does not fund a typical lifestyle these days. Finding time to write can often take away from time spent with loved ones or doing simple household chores. Writing has to become a hobby, not a lifestyle, and for someone whose entire coping mechanism depends on the practice, it can be earth-shattering.
I have always played my emotions out in the written word. Even as a young teen, I filled notebook after notebook with poems, lines, and blurbs detailing my teen angst-- my heartbreak, my joy, my anger. I wrote about issues that I have never spoken to anyone about, forcing them to the page and out of my head. I wrote explicitly about my first love, my first heartbreak. Oddly enough, I found a handful these notebooks recently. Although I was a terrible, overly-dramatic writer back in the day, it reminded me exactly how it felt. I had depicted my internal struggle so well that even 18 years later, I was able to feel the pain again. Every heartaching slice of it. But, as it were, a few pages later I was reminded of the connection, the love, the rush I felt from that person and luckily, it was just in time. It jarred me into understanding what can be lost if my feelings, my emotions, my thoughts remain only on the page. I had never talked to this person which I wrote so feverantly about in my youth. I had never explained, never fought. I cried, I wrote, I shut the notebook, and moved on, letting that story play out its end. A growing trend in my life, I must say. I've never wanted to verbally communicate. I hate it... with everything in me. But, not everyone is like me. And, although I've walked away from every issue I've had in my life-- including friends, family, jobs, and partners-- I know I need to stop. I need to find a way to get my words from the page to my mouth. I need to adjust, because only another writer can respond to me in my own way and, well, I don't interact with too many of those in my personal life. Funnily enough, I'm surrounded by artists who (no offense, everyone) generally tend to suck at using written English in the manner I'm accustomed to.
Of course, I'm indefinitely still just a writer--as the ink imbedded upon my wrist reminds me daily. So, for now, I'll have to find a happy medium. A way to get my thoughts to the page, while gettting them to my mouth all at the same time. I want to learn to be 'normal,' to discuss and conversate in the manner others require. I want to maintain relationships and keep a steady balance--a healthy balance. But I also know that to do so, I'll need to find the time to write, to cope on my own so that I can devote time--unaffected time--to those who need me to talk.
But, for now, it's time to write.