Recently I have been having trouble sleeping. A little bit of the child kind of trouble but a bigger part has been the overactive brain kind. I have been worrying nonstop about a million different things and no place to say much about it all. I realized that one of the reasons I love blogs/blogging is an aspect of sharing and connection with the greater world outside of my own. I turned to blogging at a time when I felt rotten. As noted, I struggled with depression after Matthew was born. I used to read message board after message board seeking a place or someone to talk to about how I was feeling but I never felt connected through that. I felt not many people spoke to the feelings I had and the ones that did seemed oh I do not know… I guess they were not people I could connect with. There were times when I felt like everyone was enjoying every grand moment and I was not. It made me rage inside. I felt trapped and unlucky.
One evening in a desperate moment, I stumbled upon a blog site. A site that was hosting a woman who wrote there but had a personal blog which I went to and it was like the heavens opened up and I found the light. All and Sundry was the first blog I read. And read I did. I started exploring and reading and I found like minded women across the country. Actually at this point I would like to note the fact that my friend in VA had a blog for what seemed like forever (Jen, if you are there when did you start that?!) and I thought what a nice way to keep up with her.
Any who, so I started reading blogs and I found myself connecting over and over again the way I had longed for over the years. I actually attempted to start one back then but I stopped. It was just too much for me to do. I was overwhelmed so I went back to reading until March 1, 2007. And so here I am almost three years later. As I laid in bed at the ungodly hour of 3 am on Saturday night I realized how blogs, the writings of these random women, helped me get to the other side safely. They helped me see that parenting is good and great but there are crappy moments. That feeling depressed or sad or unhappy is okay too. That writing about it is healthy. That hiding my head in a hole was hurting me more than anything. And giving my feelings, good and bad, a voice was good.
I found myself contemplating the blogs I love and what I love about them. I love that blogging gave me the sense of community I always felt I was missing from way way back. I could pick & choose what I read, losing things off my reader if it did not fit and sometimes putting them back. I am laughing constantly when I read many of my favorite blogs and I also have found that even at my rotten moments there are blogs that I read that remind me ‘DUDE GET THE FUCK OVER YOURSELF’. There is the blog about the women who is 2 years younger than me who had a massive stroke recently. Her husband updates on her situation and it seems like those updates come when I am feeling like I cannot handle another moment of any of it. Then I remember ‘Oh crap this woman is fighting for her life and her three small children just want their mommy back’ and well you get the picture. Or the women who lost her baby to SIDS just last year and my goodness it is reminder that life is precious and that loss? Well that is intense. I remember her when my kid is screaming bloody murder and throws herself backwards onto the floor in Lowes… the CONCRETE floor and the grouchy looking person who gav me THAT look and seemingly did not like my baby screaming!
I started to tally the great things about blogging: keeping touch with friends I cannot see a lot of the time due to family and work and life, the offer to use the house of a blogger from BC while we are there, helpful advice about what to do in various cities we have visited, following along with their families as they grow and change, learning about products I did not know about before, a beautiful necklace that I won and I wear every day because it speaks so plainly to me about me right now and what I am doing, it helped get me back into being fit and healthy, I won the cutest owl bag ever from another blog, I have learned new ways to write and most importantly I laugh a lot more about a lot more things.
The blogs I love seem to be authentic voices, unfiltered for the most part. Sometimes their writing makes people mad or upset but mostly I like the raw blogs where people are honest with their readers and themselves. And they are funny as all get out. Self deprecating and strong and honest. I have never been good at being a ‘secret squirrel’ as Kevin calls it. I wear my shit on my sleeve a lot and I definitely gravitate to people who are like that. I struggle with people who cannot tell it as it is and as I laid there thinking about all this stuff swirling around in my head I realized the people I love in my life, the people who are my besties, are the people who can tell me how it is, unfiltered. These people who are not afraid to be honest with me and vice versa.
And so after lying awake for a very long time on Saturday night I decided to keep blogging for me. Just for me and I hope that anyone who reads, you know all two or three of you, enjoy it! My boss reminds us constantly of the four agreements and I think that for me this is applicable to life as well as writing.
1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love.
2. Don't Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering.
3. Don't Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.
4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.