I Had to Take a Writing Break

Sometimes you need to step away from the things you love to keep loving them

Addison's Agenda
3 min readJan 28, 2019

The holidays were rough for me this year. Family strife lead to what I hope is a short-term schism.

My dating life has been confusing lately. A rather cruel rejection, followed by an unexpected connection which was followed by . . . I’m not sure what to call it. It’s not a rejection though it’s not fruition either. “Up in the air” might be the best phrase for it.

My professional life has been busy. Not my day job, but my volunteer work and activism have kept me on the go. I’ve assumed positions of responsibility in two organizations in a city an hour away so all the driving can get tedious. The work is very rewarding, however, so I don’t mind making that trip all that much.

Photo by Bruce Christianson on Unsplash

Finally, my health has been painful. In the dark, pre-dawn hours, just after a freezing rain fell, I was crossing a street on the campus where I work. When I stepped up on the curb, I suddenly found myself looking at my feet with the sky in the background. I had slipped on a patch of black ice, and I imagine my fall looked at home in a Three Stooges short. I landed on my lower back and unable to catch myself because of the bags I was carrying, the back of my head whiplashed into the sidewalk. “Whiplash” is the correct term because the next day, I had a wicked case of it in addition to my mild concussion which made staring at a screen impossible for a time.

All of this has combined to keep me from writing for a while. Frankly, I didn’t mind at first. Finding something new to write about every day was starting to feel cumbersome. People keep sending Ask Addi questions very similar to what I have already answered. The people who comment are usually trolls who want to tell me how wrong I am despite obviously knowing next to nothing about gender theory. Like I’m going to say, “Why yes random, angry cis-het guy ‘schooling’ me about your theory that every reputable scientist who has studied the subject would laugh at, you have totally changed my perspective on my own identity.” Please.

These guys think that they’re “winning” when all they really are is boring. Dreadfully, boring.

It was getting to the point where I didn’t attack my writing with the same enthusiasm that I once did. I even started questioning if I really wanted to keep writing so publically. If I had no new questions to answer if all I got back were a few notes of appreciation and a lot of ignorant anger, why keep writing? A writer’s ennui I suppose.

That was before those emotional, time and physical constraints were placed upon me. Not being able to write allowed me to miss it. Researching a sound response, trying to make my answer entertaining and just the feel of typing. The physicality of writing is something that many don’t appreciate but when you’re someone who paces as they write like me, you end up burning lots of calories between sentences.

I truly enjoy writing and even more so, I enjoy helping others understand LGBTQ+ issues a bit better. The trolls and their ignorance are just something to ignore. I shan’t be answering belligerent comments in the future. They are just tidings from lost souls raging against a changing world that they do not have the capacity to understand.

So now, I have time again and I can look at the screen without getting a raging headache. I should say, I can look at the screen for a bit longer before a headache begins. I’m going to have to get back into the swing of writing and there will be times when I fall short but I hope to back to my old output fairly soon.



Addison's Agenda

Addison Smith is an LGBTQ+ and disability educator and activist living in the Midwest with their cat. They/She. More info at https://addisonsagenda.com