I’ve been sitting here for almost an hour staring at the blinking cursor on this canvas of digital paper. Recently, I made the decision to start leaving the past in the past for good–in every way that I should–including the good memories. It’s not so much about personal mental health as it is about hoping to have an empty, open mind for something new to come along and inspire me, and take my writing somewhere. Unfortunately, I am getting nothing. My son is watching the Disney Channel, and it has become our normal weekend morning. My wife sleeps in for an hour or two, while I sit here and am mostly left alone with my thoughts and only the intrusion of squeaky voices and silly commercials popping into my head. I would like to think that I can filter most of that out, but I’m sure a truly quiet place of isolation would be much better for me to develop some new pattern of thought that generates novel writing.
I know that I’m doing my job as a parent by letting so much television babysit my son. However, I am inclined to think that my son will go on to be who he will be in spite of me, not because of me. He has been given every opportunity to socialize on a regular basis with other kids, and he often chooses isolation at school. This must be something genetic. I used to think things like “if only we’d stayed in Colorado, I would have gone on to be more socially adjusted” or “if only my parents had let me watch more television so that I’d have something to talk about with the other children at recess and in the cafeteria,” but now I am beginning to see that I probably would have chosen isolation no matter what.
The real deal-breaker for me around social clubs and groups and fraternities and gangs is that moment when you feel locked in to a kind of obligation toward some leader or group of people that doesn’t quite feel right–a yoking of yourself that feels more like being a member of a cult or a slave to a master than a member of a group that can advance your own personal progress. Even at an early age, when we first moved to Missouri and BS wanted me to join his White Wolf gang, I was of a mind that I had no desire to belong to a group where I wasn’t the leader. If I can’t be the head of some group of people, and must submit to someone else, then I don’t want to be a part of that group. Of course, I have long since acquiesced much of this and conceded that I need to be yoked to some individuals and groups just to make a living and not be homeless. However, I want as little to do with that feeling of being owned as possible.