There are many reasons why I've not written a blog in a while.
Firstly, I've been busy. This year has seen me have something that sort of resembles a social life. In a dark light. If you squint. I've become something of a dirty stop out and I'm away most weekends and seem to therefore be shattered during the week.
Secondly, I've been writing children's stories lately. Yes, yes, those who've known me a long time will know that's not a new thing. I've been writing them for years. The difference is, there's now a slight possibility that I might have something published next year, so it has taken priority over my ramblings and musings on here.
Thirdly... Well, I was going to say I couldn't be bothered, but that's not true. The truth is, I didn't know what to say. And I still don't.
It's not a lack of subject ideas. I could write a blog every day of the year - my head is brimming with things I want to write about. My mind is like a pan of boiling water, dangerously close to bubbling over. The trouble is, particularly in recent weeks, the things I've wanted - dare I say needed to talk about have been things so personal that I feel uncomfortable putting them out into the public domain.
And yes, I realise you can make these things private. But I've always liked the idea of people being able to stumble across my scribble and have a nose at it. Also, what my mind is screaming above all else, is: "AAAAARGH! LISTEN TO MEEEEEE!" I want people to know how I feel about things. But when you're talking about real life and real people... Suddenly it feels a bit too exposed. You start wondering: "Oh, but what if that person reads this and sends it to that person, who I don't really like, who's just nasty enough to ask them if they've read it and that'll open up a whole can of worms."
The trouble is, when you keep your feelings to yourself for too long, it's like trying to blow a bubble in a small box. The bubble starts to grow until it touches the sides. The bubble's so fine and delicate that it can't make the box burst, so the bubble has to burst instead, leaving the box empty. And that's the feeling you get inside. As though your own emotions have grown and grown until they can't be contained. You either have to explode yourself, or allow your internal "bubble" to burst, which leaves you feeling numb.
And how do you get past that?
I guess the only thing to do is to open that metaphorical box, piece by piece, until the bubble can escape and float away. Whether it's admitting to a feeling of inadequacy, confessing your true feelings for someone, or simply expressing anger that you've kept within for far too long, it's probably for the best to get things out in the open.
And yeah, I'm a scaredy cat. I'll admit that being unemployed for so long has made me feel useless. But I'm buggered if I'm expressing anger at someone, or confessing how I feel about anyone special to me in a blog post. Come on, we might be a generation of Twitterers and Facebookers, but some things have to be done in a less digital way, right?! But what I will say is this: Yesterday I went out with a friend for dinner and we confessed how we really feel about a few situations in our lives. How we feel about the people in our lives, how we're dealing with what life throws at us and what scares/motivates us. I went home feeling pretty liberated. Okay, I still have that bubble, but it shrank a little, just by confessing - even to myself - what has caused it to grow in the first place.
I suppose what I'm trying to say is, even if it's just a bit too scary to tell the world what's going on in your head, sometimes it makes a lot of sense to think it through yourself, until you know how you feel and why. And then when you really know what's making you tick, you can decide what the heck to do about it all.
That's the theory, anyway. I think it's a bit of a work in progress. ;)