I consider myself an artistic person. The stage is where my heart is. Acting was my life as a teenager and it’s the one thing I can confidently say that I was really good at but once I dropped out of drama school and got pregnant with my first child, I kissed it goodbye. I told myself it was a pipe dream and I chose motherhood over an acting career. I don’t know why but I couldn’t entertain the idea of joining an adult amateur dramatics group. I was a single parent for the first 4 years anyway so I didn’t have the opportunity. I haven’t been on stage since.
Fast forward 18 years and I still haven’t found anything that I love as much as being on stage. I go through periods where I write but I get disheartened. I feel like I’m not good at it. I lose enthusiasm.
‘Why does it have to be good?’
‘Who are you comparing yourself to?’
‘Why are you writing in the first place?’
All questions that R has asked me when he notices that I haven’t written anything in weeks. I don’t know?! For some reason, I feel like it has to be exceptional and when it isn’t, it feels worthless.
Over the years I have flirted with photography. Weaving. Painting pottery. I was decent enough at all of them but not great. I hit a wall and give up. I stop getting any enjoyment out it so it feels like a waste of time.
My latest hobby has been watercolours. I got really into it – for a few months. But its gone the same way as all of the above. I’ve barely picked up a brush this year. I want to be better at it. I want it to be the answer to all my problems. I want to fall in love with it.
I know I’m using these pastimes as a distraction. They are all things that professionals suggest to keep you healthy and happy along with exercise and meditation. (Two other things I struggled to keep up.) Maybe I’m putting too much pressure on these activities to be the cure all? (I have begun to read Around the Writer’s Block in an effort to help work through such resistance.)
What hobbies do you have? Have you started anything whilst in recovery that has helped you? Any words of wisdom on pushing through the wall, whether it be writer’s block, lack of enthusiasm or good old insecurity?