criticism and flawed intentions


this is going to be forced but hopefully not sound forced.

i can’t seem to enjoy writing these days. it’s been nearly pleasure-less for me. all the joy and passion i’ve often felt in writing seemed to just dry up a year ago. all of a sudden my desire to write disappeared.

and i think it’s all because i couldn’t take some criticism.

it started with a conversation with a friend about social media. pros and cons of each platform were weighed and hashed out, likes and dislikes compared. then came the question:

“why do you post your blogs on (insert social media name?” he asked.

i didn’t have an answer initially.

why do i post my blogs on social media? i asked myself.

“actually,” he continued,”i stopped following you because i couldn’t stand seeing all the sappy blog titles you posted.”

my defensive side went on auto-pilot immediately and we verbally jousted for a short exchange. others joined the table and the discussion was over. we never spoke about it again.

and like a tick that borrows into your skin and makes itself at home, this criticism bothered me more than i care to give it credit for. i hate even mentioning it now but, not sure how to move past it without processing here.

but, it did serve a purpose. it made me rethink why i began blogging in the first place.

why i first started “life with luke”.

in part, it was my most useful form of self-care. it gave me an outlet for all the experiences i was having on the streets in the downtown eastside of vancouver. it helped me vent better than any conversation could. wordpress was my best therapist.

it gave me a place to rest.

blogging also became a place i could share my experiences with others, showing them a side of society many don’t often encounter. showing them a close-up look of what our society has sought to sweep under the rug instead of dealing with head-on. as i did, more and more people wrote me to tell me how a certain story i wrote had affected their lives in a positive way.

this only made me want to share more of my stories, but sometimes, i admit, for the wrong reasons.

pride is a heck of a drug.

and this is why that small criticism from my friend stung as badly as it did and caused me to feel too self-conscious to blog anything for the last year. i think i was too wrapped up in what people thought of my stories/writing than i cared about actually writing for myself.

feels better just admitting that.

so now what?

i’m simply going to start writing again and attempt to forget all “that” stuff. easier said than done but that’s my best (and only) resolution to this thing i’ve been mislabeling “writer’s block”. i’m at the point in this season of my life where i really NEED to start writing again. i need my electronic therapist back. far too much left unprocessed and unvented of. too many stories pinging around in my head like lottery balls waiting to be chosen.

i’ve moved back from the east coast to the west coast 7 months ago. i find myself once again in the downtown eastside of vancouver, working as the general manager of a homeless drop-in center. it’s not as crazy and overwhelming as working in a shelter, but it’s proving to be a close second. i’ve already met some incredible people, hired my first employee, perfected a soup recipe (for those who know me well, you can stop laughing), dealt with a knife-wielding man AND helped a man experiencing a heart attack. those last two happening in the same day. in the same hour.

ahh, release.

this hasn’t felt as forced as i thought it might be. maybe this is going to be easier than i had imagined.

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