For the past few months I wanted to start a sort of writing portfolio. Something witty, well-written, something that contains my life stories and the thoughts that jump around in my head. Something that I could show people and say “I am actually a really interesting person outside of work and school.” But I felt that nothing I wrote was good enough, plus there were always other things to do, like failing exams and oversleeping multiple times for work and annoying my mother by eating all the chocolate and gaining 2kg in one month.
And then, two days ago, I watched an Andrew Solomon Youtube video. I feel that he deserves a sort of Jessica award for talking about the things he did. For doing that in-depth research about depression amongst the indigent and for making me sort of (I always use sort of, because I am not sure of anything) feel that I could let out my breath- a breath that I have been holding ever since I got off medication and I felt like I had to be well, I had to be happy, I had to recoup all my losses that happened before university and I had to be the best version of myself.
There was one sentence in his speech that stood out to me. It isn’t anything particularly enlightening, if you told me about it, I would see it as a characteristic of mental illness. He was speaking about his illness and how he went through the very long journey of “and emerged, and relapsed, and emerged, and relapsed…” It was at that moment I thought to myself: “Here is a brilliant man, handsome as fuck, like Professor Charles from X-Men, comes from a very wealthy family (his father owns pharmaceuticals, and yes my thoughts come with parentheses, and commas too), but he spent years being a total messed-up person. This is proof that I don’t need to be a wholesome, well-adjusted adult, or rather, that I can’t be a wholesome, beautiful, shiny, intelligent, muscular female, and that is okay.” It really helps that he is a really old person and perhaps all the successes that I have dreamed of need not come when I am 26. Perhaps it will come when I am 62. And finally well-adjusted.
So yeah, encouraged by a voice on the screen, I paid a subscription fee to start slotherious.com and I will post content that I like. I guess another part of being scared is that I don’t think my thoughts are interesting. Yes, they are weird, but weird is just like being ugly, no one wants to stare at them for very long. I started several times before this but it was never what I wanted, until this morning during an extremely boring performance management class I understood that there are four performance standards. Quality, quantity, time and cost. This is low-cost, low-quality, high quantity, posted hopefully twice weekly work. It doesn’t matter that no one reads it, maybe I will only submit my portfolio twenty years from now and pray to the sumikko gurashi gods that somebody out there likes my writing. I will still keep my tumblr, my blog, my wix, and my wordpress- there are a lot of ‘slotherious’-es out there, but it is just evidence that I was scared and never quite dared to go ahead with things.