As of today I've written 1000 posts.
In the essay I've been struggling to write for my writing group's e-book, I've taken a walk down the memory lane of the stages of my writing. (Good Lord, is anyone counting prepositional phrases?) From
"friendly" letters I learned to write in grade school, to diaries, to journals, to my blog, I think there has been a common thread. I was never sure enough about myself to speak my thoughts out loud. But I could write them. It helped that I liked to read what others had to say. I aspired to write like others before I developed my own style. In a strange twist I found even at my most depressed, I liked to write things that would make other people laugh.
Before I started my blog, I'd been writing group emails to my out-of-state relatives about how my mom was doing. It was easier to write one letter than repeat the details of hospital stays in different phone conversations. I didn't even know what a blog was until I started following Just Jenny, my daughter's school friend. Jenny's always been a good writer. I loved to read about how she rescued stranded seals or befriended stray cats who peed on her furniture as reward for being brought in out of the weather. Law school's gain was the blogosphere's loss.
I also read Weneki's travel blog with great interest. Much braver than her mother, Weneki took herself on a solo trip to Europe. I worried, of course. So I followed her adventures with both concern for her safety, and anticipation of what would come next. These two blogs were the stepping stones to my own.
In the beginning, I had no idea what I'd write about. The title Random Thoughts was as true then as it is today. Except for some themed entries - Gratitude, Christmas Countdown, NaBloPoMo and the current one, A Year of Noticing - I come here to share view of the world. Especially when my world was so small. Writing about the ups and downs and ins and outs of caring for my father and living with loss undoubtedly saved my sanity and might well have prevented me from commiting patricide.
My first blog entries were about a caregiver's time out I gave myself. I'd been reading true stories of people going away for a year to find themselves. Joan Anderson went to a beach town in Massachusetts. Jon Katz ran to the mountains of New York state. Others left the city to live in the country. All of them enjoyed periods of solitude where they got to know their grown up selves. And all of them wrote books about their time away. I decided I had to go away even if it was for one weekend. I doubted there would be enough insightful soul searching for a book, but recorded my findings here on the blog. I'd barely checked into my beachside hotel room when serendipity walked right up and took my hand. We walked into a small "woo woo" store where I bought my first bonesigh by mustachioed Terri St. Cloud that weekend. Bella the angel disappeared but Terri has been a part of my life ever since. There is no better blogger/friend/mentor than Terri. She is like the center of a labyrinth. The winding road that reached out from that first sweet encounter always brings me back to a safe place. The road is lit by the sun and the moon and glistening stars, decorated with white trees. I've made friends from all over the world walking along the spiral path, some laughing, some crying, some drumming. Some broken, some pieced back together. Terri's shining light is the connection we all share.
It took a lot of do-overs, before I finished my "Why I Write" essay. I'm still not sure I answered the question. But when I wrote these words, I found all the answer I need.
In the words of Glynda the Good Witch, “Home is knowing. Knowing your mind, knowing your heart, knowing your courage. If we know ourselves, we're always home, anywhere.” The blog erased my anonymity. Like a Monarch migrating to central Mexico, I had found my way home. To myself. Home is crumpled papers that miss the trash can, crappy first drafts and rewrites too numerous to count. Home is starting all over again. And again. Home is believing in yourself. Home is being a writer.Thanks to all you followers out there. I'm honored that you have joined me on this leg of my journey.
Happy Blogaversary Merry ME