An Unexamined Life (or Why I Write Less)

“Never have lives less lived been more chronicled.” – Dennis Miller

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Each day starts between 5:50 and 6:00 AM. I look at the sky from the window above my bed and say silent thanks to no one in particular. Some mornings, I wake up my body with two or three sun salutations. Others, I curse my alarm clock, tuck and roll out of bed, and–determining that picking up my feet is more work than I’m ready to do–scoot to the shower. On lucky days, I narrowly miss the spiral notebook on the floor next to my bed. On unlucky days, I have to steady myself after nearly tripping over the damn thing and I remember, Oh. That thing I’m supposed to write in.

I’m supposed to write.

Daily writing practice. Free-writing. Morning Pages. I’ve tossed these techniques in favor of letting the days come and go.

I’ve long wondered if my need to analyze and document fuels my existential angst. Sure, “the unexamined life isn’t worth living,”[1] but what happens when examination turns into nitpicking and navel-gazing? Are all thoughts worth capturing? Should every emotional wave be wrestled to the page and turned into a statement of identity?

Lately, the answer is “no.”

Lately, I want to fucking GET ON WITH IT.

So that’s what I do. Smoothies and yoga and treadmill walking. Binge-watching period dramas about the royal English courts. Cigars and too much whiskey and annoying my significant other from 371 miles away. Wine-fueled girls’ chats about men and their tricks. Birthday lunches at out-of-the-way seafood spots that serve crawfish in buckets with gloves, wet wipes, and a roll of paper towels. Interrupting sex mid-stroke to laugh at an Ali Wong joke about the joys of anal. Sipping beer on a lake front beach and wondering how the city I’ve called home for 32 years still bedazzles me.

When the words come–because they always do–the pages of my notebook will fold open to welcome me home. Until then, you can find me dancing to the rhythm of An Unexamined Life.

[1] Allegedly, this is a Socrates quote, but no one–including Wikipedia–is willing to confirm. 

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One Comment

  1. Pingback: 33 and Two (or Holy F**king Sh*t, I’m Turning 33) – The Skinny Black Girl

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