Who starts a website, announces it to her followers and then takes 3 weeks to write a post, everybody?!
I have a lot of really good excuses why it took me so long, but none of them are as important as I just wasn’t sure how to start.
That’s particularly annoying because it’s obvious that the best way to start anything is to just start. Being sure, confident or ready is irrelevant. We all have an uncanny way of figuring things out as we go.
Many of you know me if you’ve followed me on HaHas for HooHas. You’ve read my outrageous stories, may have slapped a like on one of my eCards or sent me an email asking me to me to stop putting my pictures in your Facebook feed because you’re in your Golden years and aren’t totally clear on how Facebook works.
I created HooHas because I love creating a spark of joy through laughter. I created this space for a very specific reason too, but found myself not really knowing what that reason is, specifically.
“Well, if you start your own site on the side, what do you want it to be about?” my mom asked me.
“I don’t know – the things I’m grappling with. Dream chasing, purpose, faith type stuff.”
“What about faith?”
“What do you mean, what about faith? Faith is faith, alright? Obviously.”
As an aside, I get snippy and oddly vague when I’m asked questions I should probably know the answer to.
I still can’t seem to articulate what I’m doing here in this space, just like I couldn’t possibly articulate what it is when that email shows up on your computer screen, the book falls off the shelf on to your lap, the stranger sits next to you on the plane – and then in that moment – a need is met.
Whatever that “thing” is, it brought me here. Frankly, I’m just going with it because it won’t shut up already.
I’m learning that I react strongly to the deep longing – the nagging question – that human beings have purpose on earth. I have a purpose for being here. And not living within my purpose is the most agitating, disruptive, depressing feeling I’ve ever felt and it reverberates deep within my bones.
Starting HaHas for HooHas – going hard after a dream, typing and designing until the sun comes up and my hand gets numb, has created an almost separate existence. There’s the me that rolls up my sleeves and gets to getting it done and the other me that’s standing by wringing my hands saying, “Oh god, I hope this works out. People are watching us flop. Working this hard and failing will suck so hard. It’s almost noon, I really think we should put a bra on, don’t you?”
It’s an existence where I dove off the cliff of content creation. Naked in public-esque vulnerability. Facebook pages. Likes and comments. Wondering what the hell is happening on Google Plus. Tweeting comedic bombs to no one. Attending conferences. Meeting like minded-people that inspire me. Meeting people I want to run from like they’re zombies and I’m looting the nearest Walgreens because I’ll be damned if I’m going down during an apocalypse without tampons.
Making (nearly) catastrophic business mistakes. Trusting people too soon because I feel desperate and inadequate.
Copyright infringement forms. Obsessing over other sites being better, funnier. Business savvy – or in my case – lack thereof.
Yearning and striving. Staying up late and dreaming. Getting pissy when something I create gets put out into the universe only to watch it flop faster than my husband when I threw him the remote a little too hard and nailed him in the jewels.
So why go through all of this? Because despite the nonsense (most of it really is just nonsense) it just feels so freaking good to be actively doing and pursuing the life you were designed to live. And I’m getting addicted.
Don’t get me wrong, contributing to this world with our talents (even if it’s simply making someone laugh with a fart story) is hard. It makes us vulnerable, self-conscious and asks our issues to join us at the dinner table. And let me tell you something, issues have a lot of freaking opinions. They’re loud, eat with their mouth full and always have a creepy way of pushing our buttons and making us feel defensive and bad about ourselves.
But creating is what we’re here to do. What we create and how we create it is what makes us uniquely us.
Purpose isn’t this thing we attain outside of ourselves. It isn’t writing, being a nurse or working hard at soliciting a laugh (sometimes a little too hard – says my improv coach after I broke out into an off beat running man when my mind went blank on stage).
My purpose is simply yet excruciatingly being myself. Writing, or if I’m lucky, making someone laugh, is just me reflecting who I was designed to be.
Seems simple enough. Kind of stupid, simple, really. Except most of us, I’d say nearly all of us, spend much, if not most, if not all of our day trying to be somebody else.
The courage to truly be a reflection of the goodness and wholeness of our soul, in my mind, requires the scary kind of faith that feels a lot like jolting awake in the middle in the night because I think I’m falling.
But I’m not. I was safe and sound in bed all along.
In an interview, Maya Angelou said that when her grandmother would hit tough times she would say, “Sister, you know, mama don’t know what she’s going to do, but mama going to step out on the Word. Mama just going to step right out on the Word of God.”
The crazy thing about faith is that you don’t have to be a Christian, religious or even believe in God to take the confident, steadfast advice of Maya Angelou’s grandmother.
You just have to take a step. Start. When the voice whispers in your ear to remind you, yet again, that you’re an imposter in your own life, faith means you listen. Step. Start.
So, I guess I started this blog to document my steps.
I think I just figured out why I started this blog. That’s good, I was getting nervous.
So why come here when you can just watch the latest Oprah’s Master Class and get inspired by someone who actually knows what they’re doing?
Uh, good question … do both? Please? For me?
I guess it’s like this: whenever a celebrity, or someone who has accomplished something great, is interviewed – they talk about their trials and failures – the obstacles they overcame to get where they are today. J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter was rejected 12 times. That fact is supposed to be inspiring and many times it is, but without standing next to Rowley as she opened up her 12th rejection letter – without looking her in the eyes (and seeing what? Fear? Self-doubt? Determination?) and running to the fridge like I’m Dorothy Zbornack where I happen to have an entire cheesecake for just an occasion – her story just seems like … a story.
Something that happened to her, not me. The struggle doesn’t resonate completely because I already know after the 12th letter, Rowley becomes a beloved author and billionaire.
But what’s to become of me?
I guess I’m here to find out.
If I fail, maybe I won’t be the only one that learns the lesson. That would be pretty cool.
If I get a victory, maybe the hurdle that sprained my ankle right before I received the medal will make someone think twice about quitting with a limp.
Uncertainty – is, well – life. And I’m pretty sure why wine exists. We might as well embrace it and make some fun out of it and then drunk text each other later.
If this resonates with you, hang out with me. We’ll encourage each other, laugh, maybe a cry a little bit. Maybe cry a lot. We’ll get up, keep hustling. High five and start winning like Charlie Sheen, without all the drugs, but hopefully with all the crazy.
We’ll just keep stepping. It’s gonna be awesome, I promise.
And if it’s not, I’ll just delete the blog and pretend this never happened.
Like my personal Facebook page so we can laugh and inspire each other and stuff.