Saturday, October 25, 2008

Why did you start blogging?

That is not a particularly easy question for me to answer but I am going to give it a shot. Bare with me as I been around the internet a long time. I will do my best to connect the dots. I think all the blogs I refer to are on my side bar.
Here is the original post that asks the question.
Picture this, eBay, early 1998. They had chat boards and discussion boards on various subjects relating to your interests. The chat board where I participated was chucked full of the brightest most opinionated people I ever had the pleasure to read. For the most part, I learned more from that board than I did my entire college education. It was like a crash course in reality. Mostly well-read posters from all over the United States and we were instantly communicating. It was a novel experience for most of us. For some it pre-dated IMing.

There was always someone who was an expert on this or that and more than willing to share everything they knew about their specialty. Many knew a lot about a wide range of topics. It was an interesting place to spend time. I do not care what you wanted to know, these chatter’s were researching maniacs. Whatever happened in our lives that chat board was constant. It was a daily priority to read and for the most part, it was usually a supportive and safe place to post. I am sure many good close friendships began there. I met an old- time poster for lunch last month. I introduced her to Thai Food and of course, she liked it. Well, what’s not to like?

Over the years, I have continued to check in there especially whenever anything interesting happens in the real world and sometimes I check in ‘just because’. Everyone was going through something different and yet we were all connected by a common interest. I knew that board was a microcosm of the real world and I thought it fascinating to read. Whenever there were tornadoes, flooding, hurricanes, snowstorms, fires, politics, 911, etc, we all were anxious to hear from those we knew could be in harms way. There are a lot of us old time posters that still lurk even if we do not actively post. That particular chat board will probably always be one that I read for the rest of my life.

Anyway, a few years ago someone that eBay chat board posted a link to a blog, My Country Life. I had just returned home from a year in NY where I lived in the country and I was yearning for new of the country life. Besides I had learned to click on all the links anyone posted because there was usually something really kewl. (Or is it cool? How are we spelling it now?)

Donna, at My Country Life (Just Me on blogger-posted on my sidebar) was the first blog that I read. I like what I read. Donna tells it like it is. I like her attitude; she is down to earth, married to a great guy who is her true soul mate. No drama. She and her hubby ride a sweet looking motorcycle and she takes me on many photoblog vacations. Once she posted pictures of a church, she attended that where everyone rode Harley Davidson’s. Her husband, Cliff loves tractors and can build anything. She has a milk cow named Secret and a bull named Meatloaf. On the corner of her country acreage Cliff built a small cabin for her as a private retreat that she sleeps overnight at whenever she want more peace of mind and quite.

She is good people, has a PhD in Common Sense, I respect her. Shit, she had even successfully lost weight and lowered her cholesterol, things I have not mastered. Do I romanticize her life? You bet your I do. I live in an asphalt jungle. I miss the country.

I sometimes would read other blogs off her blog list but then she went and posted Pioneer Woman’s blog link. I was beginning to see blogging in a new light. Ree took blogging to a new level. Coincidentally, when I was a child I wanted to grow up and be a cowgirl. Now, here is this blog about living on a cattle ranch. Wow…that will stretch a city girls mind. I am sure anyone who reads this entry already knows of Ree. I remember when she would only have a handful of comments and now there are often over 10,000. I want to win a $500 gift card to Home Depot so I can get sprinklers for my yard. What a pain in the ass it is to have to drag around a hose. I know Ree gets it. She wants life to be easier. If she knew how much I like a nice yard and how much easier my life would be if I had sprinklers she would pick me to win that $500.

It took me a while but I was beginning to realize that blogging was the future. I needed to blog, I knew it, but I got in my own way. Isn’t that what we all do? I mind f*ked myself. I didn’t think I would blog good enough, have anything interesting to share, and I really didn’t want anyone I knew to know how screwed up I was feeling, but I did NOT know that when I started my first blog. I did not want anyone to disagree with me or confront me or any other ridiculous thing you could imagine; I did not want to feel criticized. All my old negative childhood tapes were playing in my head. I was really down on my game. I only posted three times and I let my first blog die a quick death. I only shared benign safe things anyway. It was a waste of my cyberspace but I learned the lesson. Looking back on that timeframe, I now know that I was trying to heal from several major losses and was not ready to risk my feelings in such a visible arena. I was barely holding it together and Tess was in worse condition than I was.

I felt like I could barely take care of myself and on top of everything I was being thrown into a care-giving role for Tess. Our roles were all blurred. Life was changing and I had NO control of it. I was isolating myself and my world became very small. When I could not do anything else because I was so depressed and scared I began reading other blogs. People died. I cried. More losses! Their deaths affected me and I had not even ever met them but I knew them. They were not afraid and they wrote about their fears. They were real. They were dying and I was gaining strength from their journey. They were teaching me how to live by sharing their death process. There were several brave Warriors that I will always admire and remember. They had become part of my life and I wish they had not lost the fight I miss them. These deaths empowered my life.

I have to do this in parts…but as you can guess, I think real life is more interesting than TV or Books.

To be continued………

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Life is full of Curves

Things are happening. A lot of changes! Way too many to write about now. When I started this blog a couple of months ago I knew there were changes in the making and this blog would be a place I could write about whatever I felt comfortable sharing. I never factored in that there would be so many things that would eat up my blogging time. Where to begin?

With all the different stressors I have been coping with lately I decided to go back into personal therapy with a therapist whose specialty is working with caregivers. My first session was last week. My homework was to figure out what gives me joy. I have jotted a few things down but I am searching for more. I need more joy in my life.

I also am attending a caregiver's group. I have attended two group meetings so far and I admit it has been interesting and I feel good being out and about more. My homework for group was to blog before the next meeting.

My son’s gave me a membership to Curves for my birthday. I love it. I go everyday they are open and enjoy the workout. At first I was a bit self-conscious but now I don’t care what anybody thinks. I am pushing myself while I am there and my body feels alive.

Now here is the thing about Curves. It is all women. NO PROBLEM for me. It may not be PC for me to love the fact that no men are allowed but I do. I love the energy. I love the support. I love the challenges. I love the way it is always clean. I love the music. I love the women. I love the workout.

All this loving to workout is a little out of character for me and then, all of a sudden, I eyed the posters on the wall and I knew why I felt so at home.

Is it just me? Do you see what I see? All I know for sure is that I want to thank the art department down at Curve’s headquarters for making me feel so comfortable. I love thata there are posters hanging on the wall that give me permission to play. I wonder what they mean by play? Hummmmm.