Pain and Creativity

. 2 min read

I wish we were different.

I wish humans weren't so quick to doubt themselves; to tell themselves they suck; to call themselves names they don't deserve, could never deserve. But we do. Because, for some reason—call it a "survival tactic", a remnant from our cave man days when self-doubt meant saving us from wandering down that dark road and getting eaten by a tiger, whatever—we think this way more often than not. ALL of us.

I wanted to write fiction tonight, but sometimes life says, "No, kid, you're writing about your life—not your MCs." (Even though, let's get real, Scarlet, my main character is me. As are all my characters.. some sliver of me, anyway.)

Anyway, anyway, anyway.

Back to this world, sitting at this desk, watching the sunset, I can't help but feel like I've been let in on a secret that I wish more of my friends knew about. (Yes, writing, here's looking at you.) I take writing here as an example from my own life of what I think we all need, and yet are largely starved for unless we seek it out: a creative outlet.

How does one wake up, go to work, and then go home and go to bed? Does said person drink a lot of booze? Watch a lot of TV? Distract themselves with a new girl/boy friend each week? Maybe. Or maybe they just beat themselves up. Work out too hard. Make their bodies their art...

Yeesh. I can practically feel my chest tightening as I write that. Here's the thing, none of that is sustainable and it's damaging.

Case no. 1 - You'll hurt your liver. Booze'll do that to you.

Case no. 2 - You'll rot your brain, but probably first get very fidgety and feel unfulfilled as you stare at that screen asking the question I most despise today, "What's good on tv now?" (I think tv, FYI, is a fine artform if you treat it as such, but not if you use it as a drug. As entertainment, fine too, but no more than an hour a day! So says me, anyway. Just my opinion.)

Case no. 3 - You'll hurt others. Risk catching STIs. And probably just get really exhausted from chasing people that you don't care about, and that don't give a hoot about you.

Case no. 4- You can only over-exercise for so long without damaging your body and your mental health (aka become bsessive).

So back to the remedy I actually vouch for? The active remedy that is creation. In any form: music, painting, photography, writing, etc. Why? Because it forces you to look at yourself rather than run from yourself. Yes this is known, but no it is not talked about enough outside of creative communities.

I guess, all that I'm saying is that I wish everyone in pain right now would just know that art is available to them. To soothe them. I wish it was talked about more. Because isn't it crazy how we can forget about it?

I have said it once and I will say it again: I did - I forgot about it! And that was a very nasty period of my life, encompassing a lot of emotions—namely fear—that I had no way of dealing with...

And anyway. The sun's pretty much set now and I really DO want to get into my fiction for a while before I have to go take a snooooze for the soir.

Here's me sending all my love to anyone reading this feeling any sliver or speck or glimmer of pain. Please go make something, for you.