I started this blog a little over two years ago. I started it because a dear friend (Dana) recommended that I do so. She knows that I have always loved to write. I loved it from the time I was a little girl. (it goes back to my childhood books—Laura Ingalls Wilder, Anne of Green Gables, Jo March, and Betsy Ray—writers all).
In order to work my way through what I am feeling, I NEED to write, I NEED to talk, and I NEED to pray. I had been on FaceBook for awhile, but at the time I was really struggling with the protocol or perhaps I should say lack of protocol. I needed a place that felt safer when it comes to expressing my thoughts, feelings, and hopes. There were too many times on FaceBook where I felt attacked.
I had been stricken with Bell’s Palsy a few months before I began my blog. I was really, really depressed. At the time it seemed as though my neurofibromatosis was getting worse as well. With my half of my face paralyzed from the Bell’s Palsy and feeling overwhelmed, I literally and figuratively had lost my smile. So I began to write. I was determined to find ways to remain optimistic during trying times. Hence, I used that for my tagline. I frequently wrote about upbeat topics and ways to stay optimistic. In a sense that wasn’t difficult, as I have been a perennial optimist for most of my life. I have always been one to try to create community, and have always felt true appreciation when I stumble upon a community, and am accepted.
But as I wrote, I became aware of an infinite community of people longing to communicate through words, photographs, and music. I felt as though I had fallen into the community of singers on the hillside in that 1970s commercial about buying the world a coke and teaching the world to sing. When you are a blogger, or a blog-follower, you find new friends. It is akin to moving to a new town and finding new friends. That is a really wonderful thing.
You re-discover that indeed, you are not alone. When you are not alone, you have a community. So here I am today. It has been about 2 1/2 years since I began my Believe Anyway journey. This past 10 months or so I have not blogged on a daily basis as I did before. I was a little burned out, and I actually ran out of things to say. I was becoming repetitive, and I didn’t want to do that. I knew God was speaking to my heart, but my own noise and issues were drowning out what He wanted me to hear.
Some really significant hurts occurred in the past year, but I did not want to go into them here. Why is that? Well, my dear husband is a terrific sounding board. Talking to him didn’t change how I felt about the ones who had hurt me. That doesn’t usually happen. Between the two of us we can usually patch each other up just fine. I knew if I wrote about the actual things that those things would take on WAY more significance than they actually deserve. It would be there in internet world forever. Instead I knew I needed to heal. So that has been part of my “work” for the past few months.
Then the other day I talked to my wondrous friend Pattie on the phone. Oh how I wish she lived here! We put up our feet, grabbed our coffee, talked it through, and she was able to help me FINALLY see things how they really are and what they REALLY mean. She showed me that the things that happen says EVERYTHING about the ones that did it. Now, don’t misunderstand. That is basically a message that I have received from many of my blogging friends. Many have shared examples that rang true to my heart, which helped me keep on my optimistic path. And I had partially accepted it.
But Pattie helped me see it in a new way that completely healed me. When healing comes, it is truly like a rainbow spread across the sky after a horrible, lengthy storm. The birds chirp, the sun shines, and it is time to dance in the puddles and sail little boats made out of twigs.
My point, though, is this. For 2 1/2 years I have been writing. I have explained, taught, tried to share ways of hoping and believing. I truly believe that when we write and open our hearts, we reduce the sourness in the world and make it a sweeter place to be. During my childhood, every time my family moved to a new town, my mom would whisk us out the door bright and early every day. she’d say “go make some new friends”. Invariably i would stomp my way down the driveway. I wanted to cocoon in my house, read a book, and mourn the absence of my “old friends”, my “old town”, my “old school” , my “old teachers”, and my “old church”. But mama new that would give me nothing. She knew that I needed to immediately get on my horse and ride. If I didn’t do it right away and put myself out there, I would get entrenched. I might not ever do it.
Well, I am still here. In the blogging world, you have the potential to be in a new town each day. Each day is a fresh start—you bring your old town with you, and find new towns too. So what could be better than that, I ask you? I have been absolutely terrible for the last year at visiting the blogs of my beloved blogging friends. Part of that is just where my “head has been at”. I am ever so grateful that people still stop in and say howdy despite my lack of regular communication.
Even more, I am grateful that I can still share my thoughts and reflections with you. Today I am writing my 1,000th post for this blog. To realize that I had that much to say is a bit stunning. To know that there are people who have never met me face to face, yet they still read what I write fills me with gratitude and humility.
Thank you my friends….. let’s go to the hillside together.