I was thinking about that as I left church this afternoon. How nothing like this existed when I was a child. I had a diary, a little funky thing with gold tinged pages and a little lock and a key I always lost, so I had to hide it in my underwear drawer – as if anyone would want to read the thing anyway! (Or go anywhere near those Carter’s underpants, LOL)
But I wonder about that because it seems sometimes that we share things on these blogs that are somewhat intimate while at the same time trying to show our best selves to a public that may or may not ever read it. I think we also get a chance to show a piece of truth.
Case in point. Most people perceive me as a fairly happy, sometimes funny, more often corny, not very sophisticated, but fairly intelligent human being. What many don’t know is that I have been spending my days and nights with this overlay of grief that I cannot seem to shake. It’s the kind of grief that comes from the pain of knowing that we come into and leave this world alone. For years I’ve been OK with that, grateful for the times of connection with friends, family, John, happy for the crumbs of existence as it were. I was content with my life. After all, I could use what I had learned in school to help others and that was very fulfilling. My work situation was a healthy one (and still is), my colleagues and friends are lovely human beings, all with our own little quirks, to be sure, but that’s what makes the world go ’round, right? My body was going downhill and I accepted as my lot in life that I was most likely going to die sooner than later, the victim of my own addictive behaviors, confusion about nutrition and lack of hope for change. To be sure, I’ve had my losses in life, but God has blessed me with healthy children a decent husband and a means to make a living. How could I complain, right?
Then something happened that made me realize that life could be so much better. It was like realizing that I had been living half my life in a box and there was a sky and fresh air and flowers out there. I did something that wasn’t that remarkable on the surface. I joined a choir. I quit the choir when it looked like family duties would make me unreliable. I re-joined the choir when the kids got their own cars and I had joined the church.
I struggled to get my fat buns up and down the stairs to the choir loft to sing, huffing and puffing (we weren’t even running fer Chrissakes:)) But I love music and I love singing with others, so I persevered. And we sang. We sang well. Well, because we had and still have, an amazing leader, a woman who literally loves us into it. (Although she’d probably cringe if she read this, LOL:) I also found a group of people who really like each other and who are there for each other. In Christianity, we call this “community.” Oh sure, they don’t all like me all the time and that’s OK for goodness sake, and everyone has their own issues, but a new way of looking at things opened up for me. Or maybe I should say the way of looking at things that was always inside me, but never got used, came out.
I don’t know what faith tradition has this saying, but I’ve heard it said that when the student is ready, the teacher appears. And it was true here. Since that time, there have been many losses among the various choir members, including some pretty bad stuff within the family of our beloved Fearless Leader, but sharing them did make the burden less, at least I hope so!
In the meantime, I’ve had a better kind of loss – a weight loss. I think the happy little kid inside of me finally said – hey – I wanna go out and play – get me out of here! So I started peeling back a few layers. Oh, I’ll never be in the shape I was when I was younger – I’m older and there will be so much hanging skin and used up bones and cartilage, I’m sure – already have a lot of that going on as it is. But I want to live life now – really live it – so again, I perservere.
Only problem is, I am contending with emotional pain that also began with this time of change. For now I have to determine how I feel, who I am, what I am and that is very frightening at times. I have to figure out how to live the rest of my life without the drug, if you will, of overeating. I have to believe that it is NOT inevitable that I go back to my former way of death. I have to believe that there is hope for that relationship that causes me grief (and you will not read about here). Every time I make the right choices about my life is a time of acute unrelenting faith. What is it the father of the epileptic/paralytic/demon-infested boy said to Jesus? Lord, I believe, help Thou my unbelief!
So why a blog? I remember once reading about how W.C. Fields was famous for his royal dislike of children. His movies are replete with comedy at the expense of some “rotten” kid he didn’t like. Yet, at some point in my life, I recall reading one of the most tender, loving letters a father could write to his son, from W.C. Fields to his! Fields wrote what was deep in his heart because he believed he dared not speak it. So maybe the reason for a blog is to talk about those things that many of us cannot and will not talk about in public. Even good, loving things. Things that are too corny for our modern lives (so-called).
This blog (and others) gives me the opportunity to speak what’s in my mind and heart. And to work against that splitting off from self that happens so much in our world. I suppose it keeps me from slowly killing myself.
When I set this blog up, I allowed for anonymous comments. Why not? I don’t need to know who writes me, but whoever does write here should feel safe doing so.
So, why do you blog?