There was a substantial period of time in my life when I told others (and myself) that I was not interested in drama, but the more I have reflected on matters, especially over the last few years, the more I realize that at least at some level and at least in some ways, I really do like drama very much, and that I ought to be honest with myself and others about it. This realization came a bit painfully, I suppose, but it is all the more necessary to come to grips with it, and so today I would like to muse a bit on how I came to understand that I really do like drama, and at least try to come up with some plausible reasons why.
It was in writing blogs and participating in online debates that I began to dimly realize how much I like drama. Even though I find insults and squabbling to be deeply troubling and upsetting, at the same time I enjoy a good debate, and find a certain thrill out of scoring points in an argument. If you have any tendency of enjoying arguing (and some people just don’t have that tendency, and I respect that and honor that), then you are probably going to find a lot of drama in your life. At some level, anyone who is willing to write about themselves in the public sphere is going to have to be at least tolerant to drama, becuase anytime you put any aspect of your true self in the public sphere, drama will follow as inevitably as night follows day. I know that my blogging and writing has caused a lot of drama, some of it unwelcome, but as a public person, I have accepted and strove to come to terms with the drama that comes from being open and honest and public in one’s dealings, while also striving to be wise and keep private matters private.
There can be no doubt that I have lived a dramatic life that is full of incident, sometimes good and often tragic and deeply traumatic. As I have gotten older, my culpability in the drama of my life has increased. As a small child, I had no say and no choice in the matter, and the drama I suffered was because of other people in my life. As I have grown from a boy into a man, though, it has been plain for me to see that I have a taste for drama that is at least acquired, if not natural, and I have to accept responsibility for my own conduct. However, there is more to a taste for drama than merely having a lot of dramatic incidents in my life (which is pretty undeniable). In addition to that, at least in my case, is that my tendenchy to reflect on incidents, to put them into some kind of narrative, and to be sensitive to what is going on around me have tended to make life feel more dramatic, and allowed me to convey to others a sense of drama that may be missed because others are simply not aware of it.
Clearly, there are people who ought to be close to me that simply do not appreciate drama, nor appreciate my basially public and open and upfront nature. Ultimately, for people to be close they must be agreed as to whether they will live their life in some sort of charade where they pretend to be something they are not because they do not want others to see the truth about their conduct, or whether they will be open and honest and let the chips fall where they may, or work to improve themselves so that there is less of a gap between where they are and where they want to be. To be a struggling sinner is not to be a hypocrite, but some people cannot tell the difference between those who have standards and fail to live up to them simply on account of being human (which should include everyone) and those who have an elaborate double life of deliberate two-faced acting. As someone who feels rather anxious and nervous when I (often) fall short of my standards, I do my best to be generous with those who are in the same boat I am. All the same, though, being honest and open creates a lot of drama, as well as a lot of false accusations of pride and arrogance and hypocrisy that people make without having any idea what sort of heart I possess.
So, why would someone (especially a decent and sensitive person) like drama on some level? Sometimes it is a matter of tolerance and not interest. For example, sometimes one might understand or believe that drama is going to come with living life honestly and sincerely, and be willing to accept the drama because of one’s commitment to a life of integrity and truth, come what may. Others may recognize that their own intense sensitivities will make drama inevitable and resign themselves to it whether they like it or not. Still others will deliberately or recklessly court some types of drama because of the thrill and excitement it brings to what otherwise might be a dull and mundane life. Often there are multiple and mixed motives, and an intense ambivalence about such matters. However, we must come to realize that if we find ourselves in the same sort of patterns over and over again, we like them on at least some level, whether it is familiarity, an acceptance of by-products of the way we are or behave, or an active interest. Whatever we have in our lives, we have it for a reason, and usually we have it for many reasons.