Friday, September 24, 2010

:: de-scarifying the scary thoughts ::

i get a lot of questions about how up front and open and honest i am here on the blog. i know this is a business-linked blog, but i have never thought of it as a business-specific blog. it's a blog about my thoughts and worries and all, and it just so happens that much of what i think and worry about now is my business.

but this was a blog long before up up creative was a business. it has been a blog that has helped me through a lot - through grad school, through new-motherhood, through postpartum depression, through leaving my phd program after six years in, through moving home...

the thing is, i need to be up front and open and honest here because in "real life" i'm pretty guarded. but even more than that, i need to be up front and open and honest here because one of my biggest fears is that i'm the only person who feels the way i feel about things. like that i'm the only one who loves her children so so so much and who loves being their mom but who really dreads the day-to-day tedium of parenting. it scares me that i might be the only person who feels like that, and yet the rational part of my brain knows that probably most moms feel like that, and i need there to be people out in the world who are willing to admit it.

and if i'm one of the people then maybe some of those other people will come find me and we can admit those things together.

i also need to know that there are other proprietors of indie businesses out there struggling to figure out how to make this whole life-as-the-proprietor-of-an-indie-biz thing work. i need to know that there are other people who obsess about things like profit and branding. i need to know that it's possible to succeed and i need to know that we all think this is so so so hard.

when i'm sitting in my living room on a saturday afternoon, with two kids demanding my attention and a husband on the roof doing roof-fixy things and 45 greeting cards to photograph and list in my shop, and when i realize that i want to cry really really hard because sitting in my living room on a saturday afternoon under these specific circumstances sucks and is hard and isn't at all what i want to be doing, i just need to tell someone else that this is what real life looks like and i need to know that other people's real lives look like this, too.

i love it that lots of my favorite bloggers prefer to focus on the good in their days, and i don't by any means want to be the one who always harps on the bad things. in fact, i think that being honest and open and up front here on the blog means that i have to be as willing to be positive as i am willing to be scared, frustrated, or otherwise negative.

i spend a lot of time trying to step far enough back to take in the big picture. it's the way that i cope and it's the way that i create what i hope are balanced, fair depictions of my life. of life in general.

i got to thinking about all of this because last night i sat on my son's floor, his three-days-into-preschool-cold keeping him awake, and i just felt plagued by all these thoughts that seem too horrible to share: things like how maybe i work so hard to avoid my life, or how i really just wish my husband could stay home all day long, too, because then maybe it would seem easier doing this whole stay-at-home thing. or things like how sometimes i just wish wish wish i could go back to a life in which there was no one other than me-just-me who would keep me awake in the middle of the night. of course back then i kept myself up plenty, insomniac that i used to be. at least now that i have kids i get more sleep.


the only way i could go to sleep last night was to promise myself to share a few of those things today. to open up a bit so that the thoughts don't have to feel so scary. i hope that my own scary thoughts help you see that yours aren't so scary either, and that you're not alone in them.

-- julie