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May 10, 2014 / windlessly

China Chronicles 5.10- Preserving Thought

I think, for the past two weeks, that I’ve been having too much fun to even record regularly here. But that’s because I often get stuck behind the writing, which has always proven to be difficult. What motivates my writing? To update friends back home, yes, but also to leave a personal record for myself in the future. But sometimes I wonder if it’s even necessary: we do have this thing called a brain, after all, which handily stores all these things called memories- since when did we need Facebook accounts, Instagrams, blogs, and all of these things to enjoy and remember life by? Does it kill the moment if every time we see a beautiful landscape, we are constantly thinking about taking the best photo possible for our Instagram accounts? Or every time we’re having a good time, we think about how we’re about to post a great status on Facebook, or write an awesome blog post?

That’s probably just my lazy-self making excuses for why I haven’t updated my blog in a while . Or maybe I’m just lagging behind the times. On one hand I hate to think about the notion that my life is defined by the moments I capture with social media. On the other hand, there is something real to the joy and nostalgia I get when I look through old photos, the value of precious video footage from many years earlier, and the laughing that ensues when I read how awkwardly I used to write. I’m having clunky thoughts here.

But I’m also realizing that my blog serves a very different purpose from just recording photos. And perhaps I have missed the goal all along so far- that my writing shouldn’t need to encapsulate every moment that has happened to me in China, but rather the important trains of thought that I’ve had. I have a folder of photos ready that I usually fit in because I don’t want to exclude anything from my experiences here, but that adds pressure to my writing. I should just write about what I want to write about. And do it in a way that is most enjoyable to myself. But there is one big caveat: the fact that my writing is public and that I often need to censor the things that I’m really thinking. I have many more private thoughts bouncing around right now. Occasionally some of them bounce out, travel through my fingers and onto the keyboard, and end up here. And even in those rare instances, more often than not, my lazy complex prevents me from analyzing them critically and polishing them up into complete thoughts worthy of taking up an entire blog post. Oh the struggle. And my poor, poor readers. I changed the title of this blog post halfway through only to have it chug along to this dreary and probably very unfinished end.

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