I haven’t posted for a few days because of a nasty bout of flu. Being forced to stay in bed has taught me a lot.
It was a relief to be told to log off and get to bed, to read books and not blogposts; to silently rest and heal and know that the world would keep spinning without one single word of mine being typed. It was a comfort to know that you would still be here when I was ready to return. I’m glad you’re still here. It means I was right not to worry, right to trust that you’re here because you want to be. Thank you.
Writing helps the soul breathe, but blogging is a different beast. It makes me feel like a madwoman most days, swinging between highs of connection, learning, new friendships and self expression and lows of paranoia, frustration, exhaustion and queasiness at the underlying hypocrisy and unmentioned stalking and plunder that goes on in the shadows.
Some days I gush, full of the overflowing inspiration I feel the need to share, grateful for the gift of every single page view or subscription; some days I long to lash out and rant.
I relish our humanity – mine, yours and that blogger over there’s, the one who bugs us both. But I know, from living every detail of my journey, that I’m not positive every day, that I’ve needed my darkness to make me reach out for better days, like a plant craving the sun’s embrace. The huge discrepancy between my subscriber numbers and the comments boxes makes me wonder if I’ll ever learn enough in the silence between the comments to know what you want to read, what you’d like me to share.
I called this blog Sharing the Journey because I wanted everyone who comes here to enjoy hearing about yours as well as mine.
But I’m floundering at the moment, fleeing the fear of becoming ego-driven, envious of others or numbers obsessed, yet wandering around in no-man’s land, not knowing what you’d love to see more of or less of; what you find useful or inspiring.
I’ve lived for decades, loved, lost, learned, written, taught, travelled, given birth, watched toddlers turn into teenagers, had two people die in my arms. I have whole worlds in me I long to share, would gladly filter for you, refract through the prism of my soul for you if I knew it would help or inspire you in any way. But am I wasting my time here? Please let me know. I am open.
This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond. ~ Rumi
I came cross this poem a few weeks ago on one of my favourite sites, Danielle Laporte’s White Hot Truth. Her most recent quote warmed my heart and made me feel better. If you visit, please tell her I sent you. I promised her I’d tell you how wonderful I think her site is. It has drama, flair, energy and passion that crackle off the screen. Her book, Style Statement: Live by Your Own Design is a perfect starting place for a safari of self discovery or a gift for anyone you know who’s longing for self realisation.
Yesterday, still feeling ill, I didn’t post, just logged on to reply to friends’ emails, to respond to comments on my blog and read the blogs I’m subscribed to. What I discovered was like a huge get well card from the universe with a message inside saying “Treasure map enclosed, in case of amnesia.” The blogs we subscribe to because we enjoy them are a blueprint to help us excavate our real selves. Commenting in communities we’ve chosen connects us to our deepest, most authentic voices, makes us feel like we’re at friends’ kitchen tables.
I found a joyful list on Tess’s site, The Bold Life, that multiplied itself in her comment boxes and unlocked an ache in me that went beyond my desire to get well.
I found a quote on Marc’s Daily Aikido that made sense of so much and summed up many of my blogging days; then I found a video of an Aikido Master that inspired me to get well and get out of bed and stop feeling so old and sorry for myself. The quotations and insights Marc finds for this wee undiscovered island of wisdom always seem to touch me. Because they stand alone, simply, surounded by an ocean of serenity, they really get me thinking. I like the way my mind works there.
Lori Hoeck’s new site, Think Like a Black Belt, makes me feel empowered, in the truest sense of the word, and reminds me of my own love of karate and the ancient wisdom it’s based on. Reading it is a gift I give my kids. If you have kids, if you ever feel uneasy with certain people, if you’re a woman, if you ever feel vulnerable, then read this blog.
Barbara Swafford’s Blogging Without a Blog had a timely, informative piece about what to do if leaving a gap between posting makes you worry about your numbers dropping. Her blog always reminds me of how much I love learning from others who know so much more than I do.
A post on Davina’s Shades of Crimson made me smile and feel like part of a bird watching community and GhostwriterDad makes me feel like GhostCoachWriterMum – it’s bizarre how much his take on ghostwriting reminds me of coaching.
And these are just a few of the jigsaw pieces that reminded me who I am and what I enjoy. I visit many, many more blogs. Maybe that’s why I’m so tired and frazzled, like an overwrought child in a sweet shop.
I leave you with a Buddhist prayer I found on my friend Victoria Moran’s blog; I felt she’d posted it just for me!
May you be filled with loving kindness
May you be well
May you be peaceful and at ease
May you be happy
Which aspects of blogging cause you the greatest discomfort?
How can I best serve you through my blog?