Four years ago today I had a bilateral mastectomy. It almost feels like another life.
I think of a lot of interesting things to blog about at the most inopportune times, like when I’m driving or running or trying to fall asleep. Then by the time I can write it down…it’s gone.
Blogging is a lot easier for me than journaling nowadays, because of my arthritis. Handwriting is painful for me. I remember when I was in law school and we’d have (almost) exclusively essay exams; one exam at the end of the semester which covered everything and counted as your entire grade in the course. Sometimes I’d end up filling two blue books with my writings. My hands would hurt for days afterward.
I know some people think I share too much of myself and my life here. A lot of people don’t feel comfortable sharing in such a public forum. I have heard and read these critiques of my blog, and I’d be lying if I said I don’t feel the same sometimes. I think occasionally about going back to Livejournal, where I’d have more control over my followers. Even easier would be to make this a private blog. All I’d have to do is change my privacy settings. But then I remind myself of the following:
About five years ago, this woman I know from Livejournal asked me if I’d ever be embarrassed if my child found my blog and read it. The answer then was the same as it would be now: no. What do I have to be ashamed of? I’m a human being who is flawed, who makes mistakes, who lives, loves with all her heart, and is just trying to be true to who she is. This is me. For better or worse. I won’t apologize for who I am. In fact, if I die young, I hope someone will direct Jackson to this blog once he’s old enough to appreciate it. What a gift that would be! My father died when I was too young to remember him, and oh how I wish I had a blog or journal of his; a glimpse inside his head.
I read an essay recently about social media, the point of which boils down to the following: not every follower or “friend” you make online is a supporter. A lot are secret haters that want to see you fail and love to watch you suffer. I’ve encountered a few of those in my time blogging, and I know I’ve had several readers since my divorce who are here only to have something to gossip about. While I don’t particularly relish the thought that my life is some sort of seedy entertainment for certain people, I’m certainly not going to stop doing my thing because of it. I can’t be everyone’s cup of tea, and I’m totally good with that.
I’m an introverted person with an extroverted blog persona. I’ve always been better at expressing myself via the written word. Writing allows me an escape; the ability to release stress and anxiety. It allows me to share my thoughts, hopes, and dreams. I record silly things, funny things, sad things, sexy things…basically whatever strikes my fancy. Then I review my archives and think to myself: Oh yes, I remember that. And regardless of whether it’s a good, bad, or seemingly insignificant memory, I’m always happy that I recorded it. I’m grateful to have a digital scrapbook of my life dating back to 2003.
So that’s why I blog. Not that anyone asked. This stream of consciousness has been brought to you by insomnia.