Is Writing My Real Life?

You can read this article on Medium too.


My wife and I used to spend our holidays in the Alps. Gorgeous places in the mountains, beyond imagination.

Breathtaking views, long hiking, the scents of the pines, of cut wood, torrents, solitude. The deep contact with nature, back to a time when we knew to be small guests on the Earth.

I used to meditate in some special places, where I could stay for days, if it were possible. When I had to go, especially in the last moments of the holiday, a thought facilitated my departure. I said myself “that’s not real life.” It was real life for those living there. It was life for the time I was there, but not for the rest of my life. Work, for my wife and me, was down in the lowlands, near the big city. I had not inherited a farm and I couldn’t live by milking cows. To be honest, I’m not cut for that job anyway.

Yes, it’s possible to change your life, like they love to tell, but it’s not that easy. I know first-hand, because I tried. You’re not alone and you have to do the math with what you realistically can do, according to your goals, your needs, your dears.

A couple of years ago my life had a sharp turn. I’ve written on Medium since then. It’s been of great help. And I even believed it could be something. It’s been something, for my writing and my self-knowledge, but it didn’t work for me.

Yes, every day we see examples of successful authors, who made their dreams come true thanks to the MPP. As far as I’ve tried, it doesn’t work for me, and everything tells that there’s no “long run” in it for me. I’m among the multitude of invisible counter-examples. I don’t write the “right” things, I don’t push enough, I don’t have the right profile. I have something else in life.

For so many mornings my first thought has been to read, think, and write.

Yesterday, when I had the choice, I dived deep in the design of a software product I’m working on, knowing that for the whole day I wouldn’t read, and my stats would sink further. After a weekend away from Medium, my stats were already sinking, as usual. But I spent my whole Monday on software development.

I could read. I could write. But the thought was there: “that’s not real life.” Not my real writing life. Time will come. But, for now, writing can’t be primary, for me. Growing stats can’t be primary for me. Simply put, it doesn’t work. It can’t work for me. And I can’t go all in.

So, my day was filled with something else, more similar to real life. Someway a parallel life, that I like and can be sustainable. Or maybe the only one. The other one – the writing life – is a dream for me.

Maybe, I’m just not brave enough. Maybe the last bit of sanity is trying to save me.

I love writing. But writing doesn’t love me and won’t pay my bills. I’ll write till the end of my days, and it will accompany my other activities, but writing will be the spouse of someone else.

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