I don’t hide from the fact I’m addicted to television. Our dysfunctional relationship ruined many nights when I could no longer sustain a conversation due to my unavoidable need to see how a Lifetime movie ended. When I picked writing back up five years ago I had to end my lifelong tumultuous affair. Sure, we had our occasional awkward meetings when the kids turned on The Regular Show or Adventure Time. I’d give a look, show a little interest, even watch the whole episode. But it wasn’t the same. It was nothing special. Nothing like what we had before.
Now I’m in a place where I’m a little out of sorts. A little sad some might say. It’s been a tough year personally and it’s resulted in chiseling away my perseverance to do the things I want to do. Instead the overwhelming changes in my 8-5 work-life requiring much more of my time has left me drained at the day’s end. The last thing I want to do is work more. Or even think a little. It’s in this weakness my old friend came calling.
We were social at first. The children cuddled with me as we watched some favorite shows. I convinced myself it was family time even though I shushed everyone when the climax showed up fifty minutes in. Then we started meeting alone. I flicked on the television after dinner and then snuck away some nights to stay up late into the hours basking in the soft glow. I knew it was getting out of control. Picking back up where we ended in 2009. And although disappointed in myself, I didn’t resist television like I should have.
Like any addictive relationship I’ve convinced myself it’s something good. The excuses are plenty with “it’s not like it was before” and “things have changed.” All the while I know in my heart it’s leading me back to the same road I traveled five years ago when I wanted something different in my life.
The need to write turns in the back of my mind. It whispers for me to leave my addiction and come back to the place where I find real happiness. Not the fake thirty minutes with canned laughter and dramatic musical crescendos. My characters wait for my action to take back my mind and get back to work in creating their world.
The new year is around the corner and I’ve already begun to plan what I want in 2014. It has nothing to do with ducks, housewives, or Kardashians. Instead, I’m amping up the goals to make sure there is no time for my old friend to come around any more. It may be difficult, even a bit impossible. Plan to see more writing, baking, and hopefully some concert love. So cheer me on as I break free from my electronic chains and take back the person I want to be.