05 April 2010

The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

The Good:
Yesterday I gave birth to a blog about my personal transformation through learning Qigong. Not bad for a blocked writer who's barely written anything coherent for nearly two years.

The Bad:
Today I woke up with a severe case of postpartum depression. No sooner do I achieve something positive that I'm proud of, negativity demons start barraging me with a litany of criticisms:
•  All that good writing was a temporary fluke.
•  There's nothing more to write about; you've shot your wad.
•  How boring to post different versions of essentially the same message, i.e. that you now respond to situations in new and positive ways.
•  You're not demonstrating HOW Qigong is changing you. This blog is a huge time waster that cannot possibly help anyone else.

And in case I wasn't sufficiently demoralized, the demons iced their negativity cake with the same cosmic questions that for decades have dragged me down into a quagmire of self-criticism and self-pity:
•  So what?
•  What's the point?
•  Who cares anyhow?

In spite of all this negative mental chatter, I got up early as I do every morning and did an hour of Qigong. I showered, breakfasted and, wonder of wonders, sat down to write! Outing my demons to the world isn't half as much fun as talking about formerly vicious dogs licking me, but it's probably just as integral to the healing process.

The Ugly:
 In Why QFN? I wrote that this blog was only for me and I didn't care what anyone thought about it. No sooner did I take the blog live than a friend wondered why I'd put up such an unflattering passport photo in Screws and Snaps. Especially when he knew I had tons of better ones I could have used. (He probably just looked at the picture without reading the post.)

Why indeed? Posting the photo represented a half-hearted attempt to embrace the essential human condition of decay and death. Without the tender ministrations of Photoshop, cheap studio lighting and camera flashes bring out the worst in any subject, even a young hottie. And for a 62 year-old with pretensions of looking as young as possible, the photo highlighted the grim reality far too well. Terrified the entire world would see the "real" me, I deleted the offending passport photo and inserted an innocuous snapshot of an earring.

If I can ignore the constant harping of my longstanding negativity demons and get on with my life, embracing decay and death should be a piece of cake. Gulp. So to support my progress in letting go of old paradigms and accepting new ones, here's that pesky passport photo along with another more flattering head shot. Both were taken in mid March.

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