I am not a social person by nature. Most of my time is spent in a solitary state, and I'm okay with that. My mind races, and there are incredible adventures to be had, even if I can't be bothered to step outside. Unfortunately, in order to sell the things that I create during my time alone, I apparently need a rich social network. In order to get people to read my blogs or to look at my shop I need people who know me to do these things first.
I'm becoming increasingly convinced that most initial success on Etsy is driven by close personal relationships. Close friends and family members make the first purchases, comment on treasuries, promote their loved one's shop. I don't have that kind of support system. I never have. More importantly, I have no idea how to create it, or if I even want to.
I've always been stubborn. I am used to getting my way, not because things are given to me, but because once I decide I want something, I am relentless. I also get things done my own way. I won't take the easy route, but insist on making things work the way I want them to. But, I think social networking has me beaten. I'm not social, I can't network. While my creative ideas have been met with criticism and rejection since I was a child, for the first time, I am feeling beaten. I don't know if I can do this. I put in so much effort, and get nothing in return. Hungry and tired, the only things keeping me going are a sheer unwillingness to accept failure, and a desperate need for accomplishment.
It is hitting me harder because I'm also in the midst of accepting the fact that I may never be a scientist. I know this may seem silly, but it is what I've always wanted. While most people gave up on their childhood dream jobs years ago, I've held on to the tatters of mine. It is all I am, all I've ever really wanted. It is my identity, my future, my happiness. But, I am not sure I am physically capable of reaching my goal.
Everything is spiraling away from me. There is nothing for me to grasp on to. My sense of self is so tied to two things, my creativity, and my intelligence, that with the loss of both, or the illusion of the loss of both, I am nothing. As I try to maintain one, I lose the ability to nurture the other. I can't make a decision on which is more important to me, so both slip away. Then, I have no meaning, no individuality. I am not myself, I am lost, and I am struggling.