Thursday, March 22, 2018
The Original Blogger Returns Home
Twenty-two years ago, I loved having conversations with unknown readers through my written ramblings in my monthly newspaper, The Community Connection. This was the place where I could sit down at the breakfast table with potentially 35,000 readers and share a smile over some minor detail of life that caught my fancy.
Things change for all, but for me things really change. I sold the paper and went into a new line of work- counseling. In this work you feel the necessity to keep things to yourself- to ponder rather than blab about things. Years after that I felt the need to change careers once again. I went back to school to get my English degree and to get certified to teach. As you might guess this task zapped all my creative energies. And being an English major meant I had plenty of opportunities to write, if you count analytical papers about literature writing, which I don’t. Then the busyness of teaching stepped in and stole my voice. After designing lesson plans, grading papers, and finishing a master’s degree, my writing all but ceased.
Last year, I was able to return to my first love. As a child my summers consisted of me going each week to Neva Lomason Library’s Summer Reading Program leaving with an armload of books that I couldn’t wait to get home and read, Propped up on pillows atop my light purple canopy bed, the characters of my books became my friends; the connection was real. If you had asked the little kid me what she wanted to be when she grew up you would have gotten this explanation. “I just want to write a story that others can read and know that they are not alone, like the character (insert latest protagonist name). “
I didn’t want to write because I feel that I do it better than anyone else, I know that I don’t. I didn’t want to write because I had the world all figured out and have a message to impart, I certainly don’t. I didn’t want to write to share my deepest darkest thoughts with the world, I’m not the type that likes that kind of attention. But one thing has always been true- I have always wanted to connect with readers and let them know they are not alone in their struggles, fears, and failures. I have found that the only true way to form that kind of connection is to dare to be real.
In our social media society where many air all their dirty laundry while others hide theirs behind beautiful, always smiling family photos of blissful life, it is hard to find a balance. I don’t need to know the details of the stains on your drawers or even that you have drawers at all, but I also don’t need to see the carefully constructed facade of perfection. What I, and I figure most people, need is to know that I am not the only one who has doubts. I am not the only one who knows that beyond that beautiful smiling photograph that I post for the world to see are moments of tears, moments of anger, and sometimes if I’m lucky, laugh-til-you-cry moments.
So, pull up a chair to the breakfast table, have a seat, and we’ll reconnect. It’s been a while. We’ve got a lot to catch up on.
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