As I glance at the “dashboard” of my blog, I notice there’s a snapshot of just a few of the categories I’ve assigned to posts I’ve written. The visible topics are: racism, rant, regret, religion, resolutions, ruminations, and science. I click to find my “most used” topics and the snapshot changes to: thoughts for the day, ruminations, just thinking, philosophy, writing, food, fiction, and wisdom.
I scroll to the top of the alphabetical list of all categories and see: absurdist fantasy, aging, architecture, art, beer, books, business, and cars. I scroll down further and see cash gifts, change, climate change, clothes, communication, compassion, complacency, and computer maintenance. I scroll down further: sculpture, secular morality, self-discipline, selfishness, sense of place, serenity, sloth, and sound.
It occurs to me that the list of categories is the only place, outside my head, where all the things I think about are visible. However, a couple of topics that are always on my mind remain absent. Those missing topics—the subjects I’ve chosen (consciously) not to write about and share—form a wall around my writing. At some point, that wall must come down if my writing is to be as revelatory as I think it should be. It’s not courage that keeps me from writing about those topics, it’s compassion.