In 2000, before it was called “blogging,” or at least before I knew it was, my youngest daughter, Alain, was the first in our family to go public with LiveJournal. She was still in high school in Anchorage and wanted out of both. I couldn’t imagine what she was eternally tap, tap, tapping on the keyboard about. When she explained, I thought it must be a younger generation thing. I began to follow her and it seemed fairly benign. Eventually she found a roommate and arranged to move to Denver. She fulfilled her part of our bargain and graduated. I fulfilled mine by paying to move her back to The Lower 48.
In 2005 when my son, Josh, said he had started a blog, I asked, “What’s a blog?” He explained it as an abbreviation of “web log,” where people make journal entries online. OH! I was familiar with the concept from Alain, but still could not understand why anyone would actually want to do that. I certainly didn’t. Of course, I have been following his blog, Pi Po Pa, but didn’t imagined I’d be interested in any others.
Is any journal really private?
Since 1996 I have kept private journals regularly. It was prompted by The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, an independent course to assist the discovery of your authentic self. (Not just for artists.) The first assignment is to write “Morning Pages,” three letter-size pages, stream-of-consciousness in longhand to help get clarity about myself. It did, when I finally got with the program as described. But it was always very protected information, rarely anything to share.
About that time, I noticed Alain was keeping some written longhand journals of her own. I sneaked a peak a couple times when she left it in the living room. That’s how I discovered she had been peeking at my journals, too. She wrote down some of my entries in hers. I didn’t tell her but what was most interesting was I didn’t feel angry or violated.
Why am I blogging now?
Life presented me with a story that needs to be shared and blogging was suggested, but first follow other blogs and find out what people like to write and read. I was soon reading blogs by people of all ages and widely varied topics. I found myself faithfully following Expat From Hell’s rigorous honesty interlaced with creative humor and stunning metaphors. I like blogs where the personal struggles are unveiled. I want to identify and feel the emotional triggers signaling another opportunity for me to heal on MY journey out of hell. My greatest uncertainty about blogs is the very thing that now attracts me most. As I read Expat and others I gained the courage to forge ahead through my own fears of the blogosphere. Less reluctantly I entered cyberspace vulnerability.
My life has been transformed, first by three years of total disability and now by My Amazing Recovery. I could not blog before recovery, but I did continue my daily longhand journals as best I could, because I knew from the beginning that my healing journey needed to be shared in order to help others heal. I was willing most days to trudge through the wet concrete of constant fatigue and pain because of this belief. When I become healed and a healer I will know what someone is feeling, because I’ve lived it. They will know that if I can heal, they can too.
Recovery rendered me less fearful and more willing to be vulnerable. Willing to be rigorously honest with whoever shows up, to pass it forward and spread more healing into a world of fear and need.
Note: I also hope to sprinkle some humor along the way, because laughter truly is magical medicine. I like stupid humor, so feel free to share some here.