Oh, the irony – Writing as Procrastination

Shadow PortraitI just had a very respectful conversation with myself while making pumpkin curry. This morning I noticed a strong desire not to go to work, but write a chapter for my master thesis instead. Or a longer blogpost about the feminist aspects of “Gaslight”. What I actually need to do is write an email to the professor who I want to oversee my thesis, detailing what I want to write about. What I actually need to do is write emails to my family, among many other things.

And maybe I need to also talk to some of my 3D friends instead of bouncing thoughts around my head and committing them to the internet. While the internet is certainly infinite and can take all my jumbled thoughts, I bet a lot of my posts would be a lot better if I thought a bit longer about them before hitting “publish”. (Also editing and all that.)

I’m still bemused. But instead of working out why I am bemused about things and finding tools and texts to deal with my bemusement, I take refuge in writing about things that maybe have something to do with my bemusement but don’t approach it directly.

For instance, I am bemused by how quickly I am recovering from my period of intense depression. This is new, I feel. I’ve never been able to observe it so acutely before, either, but at the same time, I feel weird about it. How is doing the laundry suddenly possible, just like that? I need to be careful about not beating myself (and other people!) up with this sudden happiness about being able to make pumpkin curry. It could go into “Well, if this is possible now, why wasn’t it possible before? Maybe you should just have tried a little harder before, forced yourself to do it yada yada yada” territory. Not so good.

And today I finally noticed that I have neglected to do quite a few things in favour of writing, going as far as saying that writing was easier. Well, look at that. It certainly is easier and a lot more comfortable to plonk down on my bed and write a post about something, instead of doing the things that are necessary to get them out of the way and instead of doing the things that are necessary so I will feel better overall. If I write about something or other instead of making my apartment liveable again, I might produce a good text (or not – writing under pressure has disadvantages, too), but my apartment will remain the same.

Funny how I have read (yes, only a few) texts about selfcare and found that I agreed with some of the pros and some of the cons and how Distelfliege’s text on Selfcare (in German) is one of my favorites, but it took until now for me to start thinking about what I want *my* sustainable activism to look like. Which obviously needs to be a mixture of things, like basic reproductive tasks but also including whatever it is I want to do with my feminist agenda, because they are actually linked. I can’t invite people over for a (feminist) comic reading party, when the place is basically only inhabitable by me..

And I don’t want my writing, so newly discovered, like a lot of things in the past year, to be merely a new, shiny toy that is discarded in favor of other toys when they are shinier. I want this to be a long-term thing. Using it as a procrastinating method makes me queasy, because I’m afraid it will get tied up with procrastination and then I’ll only write when I have something to procrastinate about and I don’t want to go down that road.

At the same time I am intensely aware of the irony that I am writing this blogpost about writing as procrastination instead of doing the other necessary things that still need doing. But there is a little heap of unfolded clothing right next to me. Mostly I am glad I managed to be nice to myself about this. I’m booking this one as a win.

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