Time has passed and I feel guilty for not writing. I ask myself why and my brain spits out an answer around losing readers. I chastise myself for this answer, do I write for me or do I write as an ego based exercise? I seek the former but know the latter creeps in. That ego element is what pushes the guilt.
I want to write because I am feeling creative, because I want to think and express those thoughts. Not because I feel I ‘need’ to do it to satisfy some unknown audience or some internal ego-trip. Or equally because I have to sell that writing to earn a crust.
I’ve also been busy. Having not worked for a year I got a job. However I’m working freelance, for a non-profit organisation and I am doing my job whilst riding a bike. I think my conscious is clean, I’ve not really had to just suck it up and earn money. I’m essentially getting paid to cycle places. The phrase ‘dream job’ has come up in conversations. This morning I looked out the window at the grey clouds heavy with future rain, and as the first droplets splashed the window I turned around and got back into bed. I felt guilty for not going to work today even though I have the autonomy to set my own working hours. Even though I worked seven days in a row from Monday to Sunday last week.
Even a year not working can’t erase the preceding 20 years of routine. The routine that instills in you – through school and then work – some form of programmed action. That you should rise and do your ‘job’ even though there may be other tasks which are either more pressing or more desirable. I remember this guilt well, those mornings when I’ve been depressed and had to phone in sick. The feelings of lethargy and wretchedness compounded by feelings of guilt. No more. The joy of working freelance on a time bound project is that there should be no guilt. Some retention of my autonomy whilst able to earn money for future adventures when the project draws to a close.
Seriously. Fuck guilt.
After reading in bed for a while I showered and joined my parents for breakfast. I’m still living at home. The positives for being here still outweigh the negatives. I feel guilty though for my privilege, for not having paid for accomodation or even really bought any food for over 2 months. I wrote in the past that I would never starve because of this privilege, my safety net. I don’t like it being there as I feel it invalidates the ‘experiment’ that is my life. I can always run home to mummy and daddy if the struggle gets too hard.
However I remember I am not alone. I think of friends I know who are forced into living with parents. Mainly as a means to save money for houses. Something which doesn’t appeal to me, I’m saving money for life. I also remember that there are lots of people in the UK who are similarly privileged but don’t think about it, or get hung up on it, or feel guilty. Why then should I? If I’m aware of it and happy to hold it up as a limiting factor in replicating the results of my experiment I shouldn’t have to worry about it, should I? In fact Federico Campagna would probably approve, I’m squandering with all the resources I can muster.
No. Seriously. Fuck guilt.