I am writing this as a letter because I just need to get my thoughts on the page. I haven’t written a blog post in at least a week. I have been off my daily practice for well over two months now and I need to explore more clearly why. This is for me, but I know that a few of my more steadfast readers have reached out to me to ask why I’m not blogging regularly anymore. Let’s see if I can get some of those thoughts and/or reasons on the page.
First, let me say that it’s always a bit of a push to write daily on a blog. I guess we all know that. The problem is not getting the words on the page, but rather finding a topic worthy of writing about. I often get stuck with the thought, “This is just too boring for anyone to care about,” and then I’m there staring with nothing coming to mind. However, I recognize that small pieces of life are worthwhile to describe and that it’s often those tiny slices that ultimately create more meaning than any single giant piece.
Second, I got struck dumb with all the political opinions that has been in the air since the Presidential election. I am a Democrat, but have lots of Republican friends. The last thing I have wanted to do was to create a division with those friends and yet there have been times that I’ve had to bite my tongue – or not use my typing fingers – in order not to go off on a rant. I have justified this by telling myself that it’s more important to focus on unity versus division and tolerance versus partisanship. I have wanted instead to accentuate the vast number of similarities we all share as human beings rather than to get caught up with differences in opinion. However, I have not always felt good about my silence. So I clearly have to learn how to strike a balance when it comes to this.
Third, I have found myself feeling less willing to be open about my life over these past months. Maybe it is the current paranoia that comes from the political climate or maybe it’s just me feeling more vulnerable. I know that many people write blogs about particular subjects or passions rather than their personal life precisely because they want more privacy. I have not felt compelled to do that until lately. I personally love reading about someone’s life, getting that window into their world. I also love having a chronicle of my life for me to enjoy years from now when I am revisiting these days. I guess I just have to toughen up and not worry about others’ opinions.
Fourth, I have found myself assessing the pros and cons of blogging versus other kinds of writing. When will I work on pieces for publication or longer projects if blogging takes up the only time I seem to carve out for writing every day? Shouldn’t I be more serious? Take on bigger or better subjects? Is this the best I can do with my writing skill? Unfortunately, while mulling over these questions, I’ve managed not to do any writing at all. Perhaps I need to notice that big red flag waving in the wind.
Finally, of course, we had the Thomas fire near Ojai, the Getty fire that affected one of Ray’s major clients, a fire in our condo in Fort Worth, along with a couple of other big issues that have contributed to this turbulent (and fiery) past few months. Everything is on its way to resolution, but in the meantime, good grief! So, I will give myself a little leeway for major disasters.
The other night I woke up with the realization that my life feels more chaotic when I don’t blog daily because that 20 minutes a day is my time for meditation. That’s the time that I sit down, focus on something small that happened and sort out my thoughts and feelings.
I can breathe deeper right this moment just getting that recognition down on the page.
Okay, here’s Day One of my resurrected blog. I believe I have stumbled upon a renewed purpose. Hooray.