A couple of days ago, I announced on Twitter my intentions to not blog for a while.
The truth is, friends, I’ve hit a wall. The last several months have been nothing but heartache and sturm und drang for me. Losing a good friend to cancer, battling the injustices of a a corrupt landlord (who was fired!), moving.
It’s been too much stress all at once. My normal, healthy levels of cynicism have grown to near Dorothy Parker-esque proportions. And I’m not alone. Yesterday, I announced my stepbrother and his wife had given birth to a new son. Do you know not one of my friends congratulated me or sent good wishes to the family and the new addition?
No, people were far too busy arguing about whether TSA agents were actual sexual predators, or merely just invasive fascists.
I came this close to deleting my Twitter account, deleting my Facebook account, deleting my blog and disappearing from the Internet. Then I thought again. Why should I punish myself?
For me, entering the Holiday season always marks the beginning of a depression. I love my family. Love spending time with them. But it’s stressful. Messages of rampant consumerism and showing our affection for our loved ones through expensive purchases are interspersed with songs about love, peace and joy, then piped directly into our brains via every media format known to man.
Now, don’t click away just yet. I’m not turning anti-capitalist. Not by a long shot. There’s nothing wrong with Santa, or with celebrating the fruits of our labors by exchanging gifts of value. At all!
I guess what I’m saying is this: in fighting the good fight – combating a creeping political ideology with which we do not agree, shouting down unacceptable policies, railing against the evils of George Soros and his ilk – I feel we’re losing part of ourselves. I feel I’m losing part of myself.
In the past months, aside from everything that’s gone on (incidentally, death makes me unbelievably angry, rather than sad), I’ve become somewhat ineffective. I’m snapping at friends, failing to see the humor in the humorous. I’ve never been a big “hugs and bunnies and – ZOMG! – kisses!” kind of guy, but I’m losing my basic good will toward men … just when I need it most.
Perhaps it’s only that my perceptions have changed, but there seems to be a general ennui, even outrage, consuming many of the people I enjoy as well. Certainly, there is plenty in the world to be angry about. Certainly, we should fight back against the injustice and evils all around us. But at what cost? The quality of our lives? Our lives themselves? Our souls?
There is a popular philosophy that we sacrifice now so that our children – and their children – will have a better world. We quote such sentiments from those who have gone before us, emphasizing the moral imperative to solve problems now, so that our children don’t have to. But we often forget two things. One, that we are those children. Two, that no matter how many problems we take care of today, a new host of them will arise tomorrow.
I’m not suggesting we relent. I care just as much right this minute about creeping socialism, government control, corruption, the radical separation of people from their inalienable rights, as I did a minute ago, yesterday, last week or last year. But I also know I need renewing. If I’m going to continue to do my part in that battle, I need reminding of why I’m doing it.
In just over a month, the world will celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ. Regardless of whether one thinks of Jesus as God made flesh, the son of God given for our redemption, a really cool dude, or even a complete fabrication, Jesus’s birth should be a time of renewed hope.
Various people try to claim Jesus had such and such political views, but the truth is His message was complex and profound, completely transcending the kingdom of men.
When I contemplate the birth of Christ, there is always that one moment. The moment when the world stopped, the star shone brightly above the manger and all mankind sank to its knees in wonder, adoration, and with a new found respect and awe for life, and for the loving God who gave us such a gift.
I need that right now.
Consequently, at the risk of totally Jerry Maguiring myself, I’m not going to stop blogging or retreat from the online world that has really brought me so many good friends and companions. Instead, I’m going to devote my blog – from now until the new year – to positive messages.
I don’t mean to suggest I’m going to devote my time to little Susie’s bake sale, or the salvation of Chuckles, the adorable puppy. I think there is plenty of room for intelligent discussion while concentrating on the affirmative. After all, if we don’t believe that, what the hell are we fighting for, anyway?
Nor do I mean to say I’m sticking my head in the sand. I’ll still pay attention to current events. They will continue to energize me. And I certainly am not trying to indicate I feel other people should take the same approach I am. The truth is, our problems don’t take a Holiday break. We need ever vigilant soldiers.
I just now that my time is now. I feel called, either by my own reflections or a power working within me, to help remind the world in some small way, of what we are protecting and defending.
If you only read me for the snark, or the rants, simply come back on January 1st. Or, more likely, the 2nd. Champagne does horrible things to me. No doubt, my “not only is the glass half empty, but it’s likely poisoned” attitude will re-emerge.
I do hope, however, that you stick with me. (And, yes. “Red Eye” posts will return tomorrow.)
JUST A NOTE: Several people have said they didn’t see my nephew’s birth announcement. I only announced it on Twitter, so unless you follow me there, you wouldn’t have seen it. Also, if you do follow me on Twitter, I wasn’t intending to chastise anyone, just expressing how I felt. Most of the people I tweet with follow literally hundreds of people. We don’t always see every tweet that comes through our timelines.