A few weeks ago, when I was in the midst of the funk, I read a blog post by Truthwalker. He made mention of how when he is sad porn seems like a good idea, but always leaves him empty. I commented on the post saying that I could relate, only my “porn” seems to be the internet in general (especially Twitter, Facebook, and this blog). I think the internet is wonderful. There are tons of things that I could be doing online that I am not. I have discovered and connected with a lot of excellent writers who have entertaining and informative blogs. I could be reading those. I am interested in using my writing talents to help others. There are tons of resources online that I could be utilizing. I could be researching my novel idea. I could even be searching for conferences and workshops I’d like to attend or classes I might like to take. I could be learning and expanding. If that was what I was doing online I could easily excuse the hours I spend in cyber-space, but for the most part it is not. I’d say that what I do with my time on the internet can only be described as seeking validation.
We all want to be validated. It’s human nature and for most of us the opportunity for this validation is incorporated into our daily lives. The majority of adults spend their days with other adults. They get their “atta boys” and empathy/sympathy from bosses, co-workers, and friends. I have been a stay-at-home-mom now for 5 years. In the beginning, I was a member of a big playgroup and was with other moms almost daily. The group was fun, loving, and supportive. But ever since school entered the equation and the moms in my life have less time, the daily adult interaction I get mostly just happens when Mark arrives home from work. I miss the validation. I miss sharing myself with others (besides my husband who knows all there is to know) and being able to listen. So I’ve recently found that the internet can provide that for me in small doses. The problem is I find myself surfing between email, Facebook, Twitter, and this blog. I send an email and wait for a response. I mention someone in a tweet and wait for a re-tweet. I post an update on my Facebook status and wait for people to “like” it. And finally I check and re-check my wordpress dashboard looking to see if any of my lovely readers have left me a comment. If they do, I am validated. If they don’t, I’m left feeling deflated.
This neediness is something I am ready to let go of. I’m tired of thinking that my worth is measured by how many people approve of me. I want my validation to come from some place else, some place deep inside of me. I want to put my thoughts on paper (or computer screen) and not give a shit if anyone is reading them. I want to tell my truth and not care if anyone accepts it. I want to be convinced from within that I am enough. That’s a click worth waiting for….
Here’s a wonderful video someone posted in their comment! It’s about 15 minutes long, but worth the watch.