time to begin.

It’s time to begin, isn’t it? — Imagine Dragons

Here we are again. The obligatory first blog entry. The prologue of a digital journey. The one I’ll travel back to in three or four years and cringe a bit at. These kinds of things don’t come with an instruction manual. Maybe that’s wrong. I won’t read an instruction manual for these kinds of things.

More than three years ago, following my 21st birthday, I created “Midwest Kid,” a blog dedicated to documenting [at least] the 22nd year of my life. It was intended to provide an outlet for my writing impulses, it’s true, but it was also designed to do something greater. At 21, I felt as though I was standing on the threshold of everything. Life was an adventure waiting to be unwrapped, explored, and examined. Looking at the blog today, I find that I was not wrong. Ball State. Summer in New York City. TFG. The grad search. The road trip to Montana. EIU. Winston. The chapter of my life documented there is rich and sunny and idealistic. It glows in my heart like a summer evening.

Lately, however, I’ve been jonesing for a change. The closing of the old chapter, and the opening of a new one. Reinvention. Whenever I listen to the Imagine Dragons song quoted above, those six words float to the forefront. With a semester of grad school remaining, I stand at the precipice of another chapter. As such, I have chosen to close Midwest Kid, my hands brushing over it amicably as I place it onto the shelf, and begin something new.

I’m not a talented chooser of titles. Midwest Kid came after a lengthy soul search, an hours-long session of staring into an unsympathetic computer monitor, and it still failed to really seem “right” throughout its three-plus years of life. This blog experience has done little to change this. Putting my name at the top in all caps seemed conceited. Going a lofty word like “veracity” or “verisimilitude” seemed pretentious. Ultimately, I opted for the simple phrase “With Bravado.” To live, to write, to be.

In a few years’ time, I may just find myself sitting here once more. Dissecting the decision to go with “With Bravado.” Waxing poetic about the significance and meaning of this chapter of my life. Piecing together my story with earnest intention. Right now, at 24, the adventure ahead is remarkably unclear. Or perhaps simply undecided. But it’s time to begin.

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