Skip to content
Always Early Text Logo

Screw You, Darkness.

Where have I been for these months? Oh, let me tell you….

Published on With tags

I can give you a huge list of life events. I spearheaded a huge remodel at my comic shop, got a new website with e-commerce going, and oh yeah I got married. Every one of those things was amazing, especially getting married to the most incredible woman I’ve ever met. I’m so blessed by her love and by the changes that my team has brought to my shop. That’s not what kept me from writing. Heck, those are amazing things that all deserve at least one blog post each.  But here’s the bottom line. I let negativity get the best of me.

I had a few blogs ready to go and you know what? I convinced myself they were crap, that they needed so much work, and set them aside. I felt a great sense of relief at the idea that I would one day soon do the revision necessary and get them posted. I kept looking at the blog and thinking I should work on that. Then I started to worry about saying what I wanted to say. Then I started worrying about time going by and saying the wrong thing. So then I just shelved everything. I told myself I’d be back after the remodel, after the website launch, and after the wedding. But what I really did was give in to the darkness.

Let me define darkness as I use the term. You might call it depression or some other similar word, but I find darkness to be a more all-encompassing way to express everything from self doubt to fear of criticism all the way to full and total depression. In my head, I picture the darkness as a countless number of coils, tentacles if you can picture that. They always emanate from behind me. Some days I shake them loose and get way ahead of them. Other days all of a sudden one or two have wrapped around part of me and I didn’t even notice. And some days I’m completely engulfed and i’m well aware. The thing I like about this vision is it illustrates that the darkness is ever present. There’s no barrier, no door or wall, there’s just the darkness lurking. I like that because it means I don’t simply have a moment in life where it’s gone and I can forget about it. My life isn’t a movie or a tv show or a comic book that has a happy resolution in 10 minutes to 2 hours and we all learned something about the human condition. Staying out of the darkness takes work every day. Staying free of it means acknowledging those tentacles are there and I have to be vigilant to them and keep them out of reach because they are always trying to catch me.

I am 49 as I write this. I had a panic attack at 41. I think you could say I was engulfed in the darkness until that day. It was then that the journey I’m on now began. It’s been 8 years of therapy and self acceptance and growth and learning and evolving. Most recently, that has gotten me to face up to the type of darkness that causes procrastination and what that means. I’d say that’s the insidious tentacle that has snuck around just a little bit of you so don’t know it’s there. It hides underneath good ideas like: I’ll do that tomorrow or I’ll try to reach a goal. When I tell myself I’ll start working out tomorrow or the first of the next month, I feel good about myself without having to work out. When I tell myself I’ll try to accomplish something, I put up a shield that protects me if I don’t reach that goal and especially when I start to say that I’ll work on that goal tomorrow.

While I was on my vacation after getting married, I listened to a lot of podcasts about small business and life. My brother had sent me some Gary Vee videos and I had ignored them for a long time. I have a lot of thoughts about Gary Vee but he had one recurring message that really resonated with me. He said that he has no other voice in his head but his. Not his wife’s, his parents‘, absolutely no one. He said he doesn’t give a fuck about what anyone thinks. 

My interpretation of that in my terms is that he’s talking about shame. If you doubt because you are listening to outside voices and you think they will criticize you or not accept you for who you are, that’s shame. That’s darkness. Heck, for me, that’s darkness 101. I was really moved by that message. I thought about this blog. I thought about my social media presence. I thought about YouTube channels. I thought about wanting to write comic books. I thought about wanting to write books. Every single one of those is what I want to do. Yet I’m 49 and I have not done most of that list.

Then I watched a video where he said that you only get one life, that it is yours to live and no one else’s. And that all tied together. Why would I not do what I want because I was worried about what anyone else thought? Why should I not do what i want and let the world see who I really am? I struggle against that basically every day and I still want to run into a hole and hide. I’m an extrovert so when I tell people this they don’t understand it entirely and I don’t know how to reconcile those two things but there you have it.

So I wrote this. And talked about the darkness. It exists, I exist, and this is my life and I’m going to keep right on doing what I want. Even as I type, I find my thought pattern leading to writing: I’m going to try, or I’m going to work on this. But that’s darkness getting a single tentacle around me, not engulfing but just snagging. It’s that shield against failure and that relief that helps me procrastinate. So fuck it. I’m going to do the things on my list and I’m going to be a positive force in the world.

Array
(
    [id] => 6
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => I Love A Good Story
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => i-love-a-good-story
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => They are out there but they aren’t sending a search commitee looking for you…
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 4
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 2
    [createdon] => 1585307050
    [editedby] => 2
    [editedon] => 1585307367
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1585307367
    [publishedby] => 2
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => i-love-a-good-story.html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 1
    [link] => 
)
Array
(
    [id] => 7
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => Everything Happens
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => everything-happens
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => They are out there but they aren’t sending a search commitee looking for you…
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 5
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 2
    [createdon] => 1585307194
    [editedby] => 2
    [editedon] => 1585307248
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1585307248
    [publishedby] => 2
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => everything-happens.html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 2
    [link] => 
)
Array
(
    [id] => 3
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => On the Road Again (part 1)
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => on-the-road-again-(part-1)
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => I almost called this one “A Blind Retailer in Charlotte,” but one post has become a series and there’s so much more to it than that. 
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 1
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 2
    [createdon] => 1584545547
    [editedby] => 2
    [editedon] => 1585234431
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1585234431
    [publishedby] => 2
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => on-the-road-again-(part-1).html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 3
    [link] => 
)
Array
(
    [id] => 2
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => Find Your People
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => find-your-people
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => They are out there but they aren’t sending a search committee looking for you…
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 0
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 1
    [createdon] => 1584391027
    [editedby] => 1
    [editedon] => 1584391091
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1584391091
    [publishedby] => 1
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => find-your-people.html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 4
    [link] => 
)
Array
(
    [id] => 8
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => The Sum of the Whole
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => the-sum-of-the-whole
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => How can we not be selling comics in the millions?
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 6
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 2
    [createdon] => 1585307481
    [editedby] => 0
    [editedon] => 0
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1579090278
    [publishedby] => 2
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => the-sum-of-the-whole.html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 5
    [link] => 
)
Array
(
    [id] => 4
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => Screw You, Darkness.
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => screw-you,-darkness
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => Where have I been for these months? Oh, let me tell you….
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 2
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 2
    [createdon] => 1584790424
    [editedby] => 2
    [editedon] => 1584790610
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1566732780
    [publishedby] => 2
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => screw-you,-darkness.html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 6
    [link] => 
)
Array
(
    [id] => 5
    [type] => document
    [contentType] => text/html
    [pagetitle] => Going Premium
    [longtitle] => 
    [description] => 
    [alias] => screw-you,-darkness
    [alias_visible] => 1
    [link_attributes] => 
    [published] => 1
    [pub_date] => 0
    [unpub_date] => 0
    [parent] => 1
    [isfolder] => 0
    [introtext] => It’s not about the goal, it’s all about the process.
    [richtext] => 1
    [template] => 5
    [menuindex] => 2
    [searchable] => 1
    [cacheable] => 1
    [createdby] => 2
    [createdon] => 1584790620
    [editedby] => 2
    [editedon] => 1585310086
    [deleted] => 0
    [deletedon] => 0
    [deletedby] => 0
    [publishedon] => 1566732780
    [publishedby] => 2
    [menutitle] => 
    [donthit] => 0
    [privateweb] => 0
    [privatemgr] => 0
    [content_dispo] => 0
    [hidemenu] => 0
    [class_key] => modDocument
    [context_key] => web
    [content_type] => 1
    [uri] => screw-you,-darkness.html
    [uri_override] => 0
    [hide_children_in_tree] => 0
    [show_in_tree] => 0
    [properties] => 
    [idx] => 7
    [link] => 
)
Return to Top