I write when I need to write. And lately, that has been all of the time.
I guess I'm trying to see just how easily I can write when there is no one watching, when I know that it really will only be stumbled upon and not actively sought out.
I'm testing out what works best, to see where my "work work" stops, and "the other work" starts. The other work is making contributions to the world from here, with raindrops on the window and the dark night outside.
I know that I am simple in these moments. The same kind of simple that I see in other folks when they want to be left alone. When there is something that is in their heads, when it will not be shook free except with a great deal of concentration, and perhaps a little bit of love for what is being created.
I often see those who are looking to give of themselves with a very specific kind of return on investment. I don't begrudge those who wish to have a good time or to feel good in their giving, but I do find it odd to frame that good time in the guise of giving back to the community. Giving should be something that truly matters to others, and not as a check box to be crossed off. And that kind of giving can be a lot harder. The box is so easy to check off and be done with. The work of building community or tending things that no one else will tend to is really hard.
The kinds of things I want to give are intentional and specific. I want to know who I am giving to, and why.
I do not want to be a bundler. We need fewer bundlers. Of money, or ideas, or of experiences. We need more folks who can unbundle. More folks who can take the wrapping off and separate out the purposeful from the perfunctory.
I often pat myself on the back for doing a good job of parenting, or not drinking, or even just finding ways to stay balanced within my life. But the enormous pats on the back that I hear from all around Twitter or in physical spaces of privilege are so loud in my ears. They are frequent and sound like clapping. A cacophonous refrain that seems to drown out all others when I am with them.
So, I try not to be with them always. And I try not to join that sound when I feel good about reading to my children or making time to answer questions or help others to make meaning. Those are things I should be doing anyway. Those are things to be built upon and not rested upon.
And so I write. I write for myself and I write for my future. I write to help uncover "the right work." I write to make sure that my blind spots are not too large or my bundles of privilege too big. I write to make sure my contributions are meaningful, if only to those who stumble their way across them.