The mundane, in the hands of artists, is wrenching. In the hands of diarists, it is compelling. In the hands of bloggers…well, let’s just say the barrier to entry is low.
Wildly popular and profitable blogs. By women. Whose lives, because they are women’s lives, are considered trivial. Who needs to read about babies and breastfeeding and business and sex and miscarriages and marriage? We should be talking about big things, like life, its meaning, and how to live it. Ahem.
And so…it’s said that they — women bloggers — “over-share”. Maybe. Maybe not (Philip Roth and Henry Miller became critical and literary darlings when they did it). But train-wrecks?
Was Anais Nin a train wreck?
Maybe. But she was also an important artist and a disconcertingly doe-eyed challenge that got inscribed right through contemporary writing. If you write about sex, love, art or intimacy, you’ve read Anais Nin – or you should.
Her art was her life. She beat the drum of minutiae until it sang thematically and wailed archetypal tales.
She lived and wrote her life. Every last detail. She cried, she lied, she loved, and she pried poetry out of it all.
I’m a trainwreck writer and proud mistress of the over-share. I broadcast my decisions and indecision and mistakes and – from time to time – little bits of universal light that look a lot like learning.
I call this toggling.
Toggling, to me, in this way, is the day-to-dayness of survival justaposed against my existential angst: that inner voice who just won’t shut up.
Toggling makes me less dictatorial about shoulds and oughts and ought nots. It allows for uneven-ness, broken pavement, and different terrains. It lets me to be large and contain multitudes even in the most mundane of moments.
Toggling doesn’t require leveling. It seeks different levels and bounces between them. Ctl/tab/ personal/political/unique/universal. Balance is unnecessary. Instead, there is a symmetry in unbalance. There is freedom – even truth – found in the movements in and out of those spaces.
Toggling isn’t just about blogging. It is a life practice.