I got an amazing comment this week: Someone came by my blog to see if I had written a new post.
That simple sentence contains three gems: (1) Someone reads my blog (which I did kind of know, but still…), (2) Someone actually came by ON HER OWN ACCORD, not pulled by a Tweet or a link or a Facebook like or my Feedburner post pushes, (3) Someone actually was interested to read an update from me, a post, some thoughts, some words, something.
I have been feeling so heavy with heavy lately, that I had kind of made an intentional decision to stop writing until I felt I had some more positivity in my voice. I know, this blog is not about positivity — it’s about authentically experiencing pain, grief, loss, confusion, uncertainty, doubt. And also about authentically experiencing joy, peace with the order of things, coming to terms with the challenges of consciousness etc etc.
It’s definitely not about nail polish, mascara and the best new booties for fall, which happen to represent about 22.7 percent of what else is in my brain besides what is in this blog.
I struggle with How much is too much? I struggle with the fact that people I know and see every day or every week read this blog and sometimes give me the “How aaaaaaaarrrrrreeee you?” huggy-face greeting shortly after I’ve posted. I struggle to figure out how to explain to those people that the thoughts I type here are not my 24-hours-a-day experience of living. (See previous paragraph re: nail polish, mascara, and booties, and be sure to check out my totally awesome Pinboard on the latter item.)
I have been branded “intense” for a very long time, a word that has both positive and negative connotations. Positive interpretations: passionate, enthusiastic, committed, visionary, engaged, deep-thinking, loving, accepting. Negative interpretations: emotional, volatile, sensitive, unbalanced, unboundaried, unraveling.
It’s the “unraveling” part that keeps me quiet on this blog sometimes.
My mother was manic depressive and suicidal for large swaths of my so-called childhood. I say so-called, because I was her keeper, a role she happily bestowed me with, as did my father. (Bad parents! Bad, bad parents! But they were great parents, too.) I have been in therapy long enough to know truly that her illnesses and struggles are not mine, and yet, still I pause.
I know we all struggle to be understood. I know this is one of the primary reasons that the blog culture became as powerful as it did. Blogs brought the work of witnessing and being witnessed in our daily lives to our fingertips, reaching women, especially, who toil under the burdens of too many expectations and roles and not enough support, from our government, corporations and society as a whole. But wait… I digress into the larger cultural picture, which is my safe place. Because then what the ME is experiencing becomes the story of how our world is unfolding and my pain momentarily is swept away in the fascinating storyline of how humans get things right and wrong all at once in such a stunningly glorious clusterfuck that it’s impossible not to be entranced at the interlocking colored cables of all we are trying to figure out…..
Yes, right struggle to be understood. Struggle to understand. That’s what this blog is about. And I will take this moment to thank anyone and everyone who has ever read a word.
Know that I wrestle with the Big Questions, both here and in my head, partly because I am intense. But mainly because I am interested. Yes, this is a terrifically challenging time for me in my life. I am humbled every day by how much pain and loss I’ve experienced in such a short time. I still can’t believe how lonely I am, and that I haven’t gotten better at populating my daily life with support, community and friendship.
I can’t find my place.
Do we all even “have” a place? Do we even have the right to expect to get there?
These are the things I want to talk about here. And I am going to try to give myself permission, once again, to do so, and not be concerned that anyone who reads it thinks I am “unraveling.”
Because if, at any point, I suspect that I might be unraveling, this is most certainly the first place I would come to share it.
Thank you, readers, commenters and lurkers all. Thank you for confirming to me that I am not the only person in the world who sees things the way I do. Thank you for making me not alone, in more ways than one.
And thank you, especially, to Melissa, for her comment on September 10 on an old post that gave me permission to claim this space for myself again, and be whomever I need to be on any given day. I bow to you in a deep Namaste for welcoming me and my thoughts into your life.