Better Learning Through Blogging
I’m learning a lot from writing this blog, but I’m not sure if I’m happy with what I’m learning. First thing I’ve learned, is that I seem to have an embarrassing clawing need for validation. I’m always checking for comments, and likes, and I’m always praying for awards and Fresh Pressing. I guess most people have some of that in them. It’s a rare person who doesn’t care what others think, to some extent. But I would be happier to be a little more independent.
Second of all, I don’t seem to know shit about much. I know a lot about being an Ob/Gyn, because I am one, but there is only so much I can write about that. Details about surgeries and such will bore most readers. And I can’t write much about patients, because I don’t want anyone to recognize themselves in my writing. That’s a violation of privacy, and if I am found violating HIPAA laws, I can be fined in the six digits. I can’t afford that.
I really don’t know much about current events. I mean, embarassingly little. I think I have deliberately divorced myself from a lot of the news, because none of it seems to be good, and there seems to be a lot of idiocy. The recent election about drove me insane. I just pulled away and refused to discuss it with anyone. So anytime I am asked to discuss current events, I just shy away. I am woefully ignorant.
I’m also not nearly as funny as I thought I was. I mean, I am funny in a quick comeback one-off kind of a way, but when it comes to writing prose with consistent humor, I fall far short of the mark. I think this is the most depressing and most surprising thing that I’ve learned. The other things I pretty much knew anyway. But not being funny! That’s a major slap in the face. I used to could be funny (notice that Southern sentence construct), but something has happened to me. I think that something is a worsening depression. Nothing is funny when you’re depressed. And my life is so monotonous. You need some variation in life to be able to draw humor from it, not the same thing day in and day out. I can exhaust the humor in my job in a couple of posts. (Actually, that’s not true. A lot of funny things happen in the course of the day, but a lot of the humor is particular to my subspecialty and not everyone will get it.) And the humor that people will get involves poking fun at my patients, which is easy to do, but once again may violate privacy regulations.
Next, I really need some friends. I have immersed myself in work and family for so long I have little time left for anything else. I seem to be making some friends in the blogging community, which has stirred some dormant need in me to find a friend to confide in. There is no one in town I can call friend; there a few physicians that I am friendly with, but I wouldn’t call them to go eat dinner or call them with a problem. I am really a pretty lonely person. And I don’t like being lonely.
I also find myself paying a lot more attention to others’ writing styles. I am reading Mary Karr’s Lit right now and I notice how she interweaves poetry with her narrative. And I also noticed she doesn’t use quotation marks when doing dialogue, which I find quite interesting. This is at least helping me develop my own style, although that style seems to be stilted and stuffy.
I also didn’t realize what a decent photographer I am. I love photography; I have taken a lot of pictures in my life, but I’ve noticed a lot of my posts really revolve around my photographs. And the posts that get the most positive comments seem to be photography. I never would imagine that I would fall in with a group of photographers more than a group of writers! That’s one good thing I’ve learned that actually makes me happy. I’ve become more proud of my photography.
So, I’ve learned a lot about myself by writing this blog. I’ve also learned that I am a creature who operates by rote and by habit; I have taken the challenge to produce a post daily to heart. I’ve even prepared a post to be released on Thanksgiving day, since I will be at my parents’ house that day. I doubt anyone will read it, but if they look, it will be there. This post is actually for tomorrow, since I’ve already presented one for today. So – totally anal retentive, which I already knew. The blog seems to be a reflection of my personality, which is probably not all that interesting an observation, as that is probably true of everyone. My vow for 2013? Try to be funnier! Look for the humor in life. Maintain a positive attitude. These are the goals that this blog has helped me to reach for. These are the goals that I need to achieve anyway.