Running on Empty

Yesterday’s post felt honest, but mean. Not all truths need to be delivered with force. If someone asks if their dress makes them look fat, you don’t have to lie. You can say, “It’s not flattering to your figure” or “it’s not my favorite outfit you’ve worn.” You can say yes without making it a personal attack.

Feeling a little bit more rested today, I committed a personal attack on myself. Not a whacky, zany kind of thing like Jim Carrey in Liar Liar. Not even an ironic scene like in Fight Club.

I’m just… empty. When I reach inside for self-compassion, I don’t find any, just like I’m not finding much in the way of creativity or cleverness. I feel tired all the time, even when I’ve had a good night’s rest.

Today, writing the daily blog post is hard, because when I look for something to say, I’m not finding anything profound or useful to put into the world. Just echoes of the stuff from yesterday, because I’m cavernous and hollow inside.

I’ve tried playing my instrument a few times. It’s like finding warmth from a struck match. It’s momentary and painful if I try to grasp it. There’s nothing to kindle to flames, so the moment burns out and I’m cold again.

Editing Spin City for the critique group is good. There is some really clever dialog in that story. The story itself is clever, and I wish I could go back in time and give it to my younger self. It’s the kind of story he wanted to write. But then I look at the business of writing and I think of what it would take to get the book in other people’s hands, and I get that hollow feeling all over again.

3D printing and gaming. Replacing the custom water loop in my computer. Cleaning up parts of my garage. These are all short term solutions to a long term problem.

I don’t know how to refill the well. I don’t think it can come from outside. I don’t think anyone can give me a few choice words and rekindle my inner fire. I have to find the answer myself and then do the work.

The challenge is that I don’t want to do anything. Everything I am doing right now is an act of will. And there’s only so much of it to go around.

I finished this post, though, and I’m attending the critique group soon. After that, I’ll probably start the print of the new keyboard I want to build.