Cover your ears

This is really it, isn’t it? You are doing the best you can to cope and survive amid your struggles,¬†and that’s all you can ask of yourself. We’re doing all we can; there isn’t any more. That’s what “best” means. There’s nothing better.

I read a blog post yesterday written by someone who is struggling with perfectionism. As a recovering perfectionist, I felt the writer’s pain in a very real way. It took me a long time to get over my issues, and I’m so grateful that I was able to live my life the last 10 years or so without carrying that heavy burden.

My mother was a perfectionist, so my childhood was defined by the dichotomy between her need to be the perfect mother and my imperfections, which she seemed to take personally and viewed as “wrongs” to be righted. She believed she could make me into the perfect child she had envisioned. She aimed to do this by attempting to control every aspect of my life and personality. I got the message very early on that the person I counted on for my survival felt there was something wrong with me – a lot wrong with me – and I did all I could to convince her otherwise by being the best little girl ever and doing everything she said. It wasn’t enough, though.

I was never enough.

This screwed me up pretty good, I’ll tell you. As I grew up I gradually took over the browbeating where my mother left off. She had convinced me that I was worthless and that my best bet was to hide all that was wrong with me by trying to control everything and everyone around me. Believe me, I tried.

The depression started when I was 14, and got worse as time went on. Decades later, in therapy, I saw how the perfectionism and the depression were connected. Not rocket science. Perfectionism is all about control. It has nothing to do with striving for excellence. Striving for excellence is healthy and empowering. Perfectionism is exhausting and paralyzing. Ultimately, you can’t do anything for fear of doing the wrong thing, and that’s where the depression comes in.

I try to be easier on myself now, and I’m much happier – much more comfortable with who I am and what I need – than I was most of my life. I wish I could gift that freedom from the need to be more to that young blog writer. I wish I could convince her that she’s fine just as she is, and that no one is keeping score, perfect, or otherwise. I wish she would believe me that she is enough, and that she is welcome in the world with all the rest of us imperfect humans.

It’s hard enough to get along the path without standing in your own way or tripping yourself up because you’re beating yourself up over every little thing you can’t control or accept. The reality is that there’s no right way to live, or to be; we are all unique and that’s what makes us wonderful. Every single one of us. We all have a place here. Everyone is deserving of love and understanding. Period.

Don’t believe other people when they tell you they have it all figured out, and that there’s a “best life” or that having more stuff or more experiences or money or relationships or anything will make you happy. It’s not on Facebook or somewhere else “out there.” Real life is right here, right now, whatever is happening in this moment, just as it is.

Real life. Real life that’s scary and wonderful and imperfect and glorious. It’s in you, that safety, that comfort. Happiness. Acceptance. Relax into it and let the rest go.

You are enough. You always were and you are now.

Let it be.


Nailed it!

I think I got too relaxed! I’m having trouble getting back into regular life after the holiday weekend. Work yesterday was less than invigorating. The day dragged on and on, and while I got done all that I needed to, I didn’t really do very much. I slouched home around 4:30. I took the long way and drove past a few favorite lake viewing spots, cuz it was really windy and the waves were powerful and gorgeous, and that helped a little. Mom wasn’t feeling well when I got home, so it was a quiet evening, and I was relieved the day was over when I climbed into bed.

So now…Tuesday. It’s. Only. Tuesday. I didn’t sleep very well; I had a bunch of weird dreams and woke up jangling with anxiety. So yesterday’s mild inertia has become today’s yawning paralysis.

Good times. ūüĎć

A couple of things have happened in the last couple of days that have caused me to worry about the future. Change is hard. Loss is hard. I don’t have so much in my life that I can afford to lose some of it – any of it. Everything is in short supply – time, friends, money, ease. My life is simple these days, by necessity, but it’s not easy. I don’t necessarily need it to be – I’m doing fine with facing and doing what needs to be done mostly – but I’m not thrilled by the idea of it getting harder.

So I have to remind myself over and over that I’m not in control, and that I know how to keep myself sane and on-task. All the clich√©s are on auto-repeat in my head: This too shall pass, Nothing lasts forever, Change is inevitable and not necessarily bad, etc.

Sometimes I wish life happened in slow-motion and that you could press a cosmic Ctrl-Z to do over the things that don’t happen the way you want them to.¬† Wouldn’t that be great? Too bad it doesn’t work that way. (Certainly if Microsoft could manage it the Creator of the Universe could have. Just sayin’.) An occasional window into the future seems like it would be a good thing, too, but maybe not. I would only want to see the good things ahead; the bad things would be too discouraging, I’m afraid, and we know there is no good without the bad, don’t we?

Don’t we? Honestly, though, I’d like to try it out.

Sooooo…here I am, at my desk, trying to keep the anxiety at bay in between giant gaping yawns. No worries. It’s gonna be a GREAT day.¬† ūüôā




Much ado about nothing

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Thanksgiving was really nice. Mom and I felt like we had reclaimed the holiday (one of my favorites) after the last two years were disappointing, to say the least. Turkey sandwich for lunch yesterday, then a walk downtown to do some shopping and see the holiday parade and the tree-lighting in the park. Santa was there! Flew in from New York yesterday, apparently. ¬†The parade was short – this is a very small town – but just as well as this is northern Michigan and it was cold. Not too bad though, considering Thanksgiving morning for the Turkey Trot it was 5¬į, ¬†and there was hot chocolate and cookies to warm everyone up. Spirits were high, and ¬†I was glad I went.

Today the resting begins. I have no plans to get dressed. We’re doing the day in the key of¬†low, and probably tomorrow, too. To my mind, this is the best part of this weekend. I usually take this whole week off – 9 days off in a row for the price of only 3 vacation days! – but I didn’t this year, cuz I’m saving my leave time in case mom gets really ill again and I have to stay home with her for a while like last Spring. So this year I’m doing 2 days of LOTS OF THINGS! and 2 days of NOTHING!, and that’ll be good enough.

And the Nothing has started! Yay! Reading and¬†lounging¬†and I don’t know what else, but whatever it is it will not involve wearing pants or shoes. I will probably put up our little Christmas tree and put new batteries in the outside twinkle lights, but that’s the extent of my ambition for this dark November day. Perfect day for pancakes and a cup of tea, then soft music and reading.

That’s the plan, anyway. When mom gets up that plan could be scuttled, depending on how she feels. She has good days and bad days, and one of the hardest things for me to come to terms with in this situation is that when she has a bad day it changes everything, including whatever I had planned, and there just isn’t any ¬†way around that. I grew up in a household controlled entirely by my mother’s health issues and here I am again.

I’m an adult now, though. I get it’s not all about me, and I’m pretty clear that I’m here for my mother and not for me. So her needs take precedence, and I just try not to hang on too tightly to my expectations, so I’m not disppointed all the time like I was when I was little. In fact, I try not to have expectations in the first place, but that’s easier said than done, for sure. I knew a guy once who was a pessimist and he said the benefit of always expecting the worse was that he was almost never disappointed and sometimes he was pleasantly surprised. ūüôā

I am fundamentally an optimist, though, so I’m afraid I can’t easily stop my battered brain from¬†hoping, but I try hard to keep an open mind and heart and just go with the flow. Not necessarily without disappointment, but without¬†resentment, and that has made the difference. Resentment will eat you up and spit you out if you let it, and I let it for a long time, I’m sad to say. I’m older and wiser now, though, and I avoid the R-word at all costs. Therapy helped me recognize it and banish it, and I’m so deeply grateful for that. Now meditation helps keep it from sneaking up on me.

So I’ll hope that the NOTHING plan comes off without a hitch today, but if not, well, I’ll do what needs to be done. Whatever it is. That’s what I signed up for, and that’s just the way it is right now. It won’t be this way forever. Who knows where or with whom I’ll be next ¬†Thanksgiving? There’s always the chance that this is the¬†last¬†Thanksgiving for my mom, or for me, for that matter. The future is not meant to be known. If it was, we wouldn’t be able to go on, would we?

Holidays mark time. Among all the non-descript days in the year they stand out in our memories. I know exactly where I was on Thanksgiving day last year, and the year before that, the years my dad and grandma were with us, and the year I had 12 people at card tables in my little kitchen and we played Uno after dinner. Unlike most of the rest of the days that just glide by in the busy-ness, holidays are special. Friends and family gather and we celebrate our human life and each other and all that’s good in the world. We witness the changes in each other in the last year, and remember those who are no longer with us.

Hopefully we spare a thought for those who are alone or homeless or who’ve suffered tragedy in the last year, too. Because holidays mark the bad years, too, sadly. They are guideposts through the year, marking our passage through the Grand Turn, our trip around the sun, for better or worse. This year we’re good, other years less so. All part of our lives, the good and the bad. There’s no avoiding either.

So Thanksgiving is over and now on to Christmas, which I’m less inclined to look forward to, but still, there are good things, and it serves as an opportunity to take stock, give thanks and celebrate life and love and the return of the Light. I’m not a Christian per se, anymore, but I’m all about the light and the Solstice and the turning of the year. When I was a practicing Episcopalian, Advent was my favorite time of year. The anticipation of light’s (and life’s) return is especially meaningful to us in the northern realms, where light and growth is scarce for much of the year.

Whatever holiday you celebrate, in whatever way you give thanks and mark time, I wish you well and I wish you much more of whatever it is you long for.

For myself today and tomorrow I’m wishing and hoping for¬†nothing.¬†For rest and restoration. Renewed strength for the way forward.

In my pajamas! Onward ho.

It’s not just about the turkey

Happy Thanksgiving, American friends!

Yesterday I was speaking to a co-worker whose mom passed from cancer a couple of months ago. She’s trying to wrap her head and her heart around her first holiday without her mother, and I remember that sadness and confusion well, after my dad died in 2012. He passed on November 14th, and a week later, my mom and I were alone for Thanksgiving. It was weird and it was hard that year, and for a while after, but it has stopped being weird or hard 6 years later, and I didn’t really realize that had happened until I was talking to Amy about her mom yesterday.

It happened while I wasn’t paying attention, I guess. While I was just living and getting through the days. In fact, the anniversary of his death snuck up on me this year, too. Suddenly it was November 14th and I had the thought a couple of times in the morning that the date was somehow significant – someone’s birthday, maybe? – but it didn’t really register with me until later in the day:

Ah, that was the day my father left this earth.

I had a fleeting feeling of guilt that I’d forgotten, but then I saw it in a different light: I’m living in the here and now and that’s a good thing. I’m present to my life these days, no longer dredging up the past and the Litany of Loss periodically and plunging into depression as I once did. I simply don’t have time. I miss my dad, my Nana, lots of friends, pets, even some of my younger selves, but I don’t have the luxury of wallowing in loss anymore, and I’m lucky that my brain seems to be onboard the wellness train now thanks to medication and therapy years ago, and meditation recently, so it doesn’t go there as often on its own anymore, either.

I can control what I think about for the most part, and lately I try to think about what’s right in front of me. Right now. What needs to be done? Which thing on the list of things to do at home and at work needs my attention this minute? How are the people I care about in my life right now? I don’t think so much about what (or whom) I’ve lost. I think about all that I have. Not all the time, but as much as possible, and certainly more than in the past. I try not to think about what (or who) is not present in my life right now, and focus on what and who is and what I can do for them and for myself to make things a little better.

My Litany of Loss is long. So is yours. Human life is HARD, and our emotional and mental wellbeing ultimately comes down to how well we process and carry those losses: whether we go forward, slowly at first, but always gaining ground, until at last, some of our burdens can be safely left behind, or we are so weighed down by them that we can’t go on and life in the present seems impossible.

As we age, those losses mount up, and that burden is too much to bear unless you set some (or all) of it down. I remember lots of things about my dad – good things. Lots of holidays (he loved Christmas and Halloween more than anyone I’ve ever known!), his dry sense of humor, his beautiful singing voice, love of music, and the joy he found in entertaining people. I remember how much he loved me. Those are the things that matter, and I’m grateful that I can think of him and those things without pain. In fact, that I can think about¬†all of the losses most days without tumbling into an abyss of sadness and for that I’m deeply, deeply grateful. That change was a long time coming.

Time heals if we let it. If we just let it flow – not try to stop it or slow it down – it will wash the pain away gently and leave behind gratitude and joy. Gratitude for the experience, joy in having gained the strength to move on, to be in the moment, open to what (and who) is here for us now.

Like waves in the ocean (or Lake Michigan) – let it flow. Life is beautiful, but loss is inevitable in this human existence. We are tested over and over, learning to let go, until it is our own life we are forced to release. Until then, in the immortal words of Dory:

Just keep swimming.



 


When I am Queen

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  1.  Anyone who deliberately harms a child, animal, or disabled or elderly person IN ANY WAY will be imprisoned for life, forced to eat spiders, and have body hair removed one at a time with tweezers for 2 hours daily.
  2. Bullying, in any form, will not be tolerated. Perpetrators will be imprisoned and forced to endure the really bad and annoying acts on “America’s Got Talent” 24 hours per day, and consume a diet consisting only of worms for the remainder of their lives
  3. TV commercials will be banned. (Except the funny ones – the Queen enjoys the funny ones. They will be reclassified as Entertainment and re-filmed without the annoying selling part.)
  4. Daily news will be made available on all media outlets once per day for one hour. Period.
  5. Political campaigns will be allowed to assault the public consciousness for two weeks ONLY prior to any election. Failure to abide by this rule will result in immediate imprisonment and voice box removal.
  6. It will be forbidden to discuss politics or elections. See above re: voice box removal. End of story. The Queen will not entertain any dissension on this point. Finito. Ipso facto. Done.
  7. Voting will be made easy for everyone over 18 through various forms of technology and will be required. Failure to vote will result in immediate expulsion from the realm. Really. If you don’t use it you lose it. Go live in North Korea or China, then tell the Queen how it’s not worth voting or you don’t have the time. Honestly.
  8. Lying will be a crime, punished swiftly and eagerly. Anyone discovered to have been lying will be imprisoned in a solitary, sound-proof chamber, given only tar and snakes to eat, and vinegar to drink for the rest of their lives.
  9. All subjects not prevented by an allergy or other contraindication will be given all available vaccinations. There will be no exceptions to this rule. Failure to comply with this rule will result in expulsion from the realm. Period. No kidding. Children and old people are not going to die in the realm because you read something on the internet and are too stupid to know it’s crap.
  10. Healthcare for all in the realm will be treated as the inalienable human right it is. It will be provided at no cost to every person in every place. Ditto education. Any teacher or educational system who allows a child to pass to another level without a firm grasp of all he’s learned to that point will be imprisoned immediately, and placed in solitary with a bag over their head(s) for the remainder of their lives. Everyone – EVERYONE – in the realm will be able to read, write, do math, and have a basic understanding of history and science, and will therefore be a valued participant in his own life and in the life of the community.
  11. No one in the realm will make more than $100,00 per year, or possess more than $150,000 at any one time. Seriously. Belief that one must possess more money will be considered a mental illness and treated accordingly with drugs and counseling. Subjects will be encouraged to get a fecking clue about what’s important in life. Money makes people crazy, and the Queen will not tolerate that kind of crazy.
  12. No taxes. (Fantasy monarchy, fantasy realm, fantasy money. Easy-peasy. Yeah, I could fantasize about Brad Pitt or something, but this is what I wish for. Don’t judge.)
  13. No guns. No exceptions. No hunting – see #1. No kidding. (I don’t have to explain or defend – I AM THE QUEEN. )
  14. The Queen will be the Queen for life. All other positions of influence in the realm will be filled by election. In order to qualify to run for a position of influence you must demonstrate to the Queen that you are an intelligent, thoughtful, compassionate, truthful person of integrity, with no prejudices of any kind.
  15. Everyone is welcome in the realm. If you are willing to live by the rules, you are welcome no matter your gender, your color, your size, your anything. We will be free to live our lives, safely, healthfully, and joyfully in the realm, unmolested by the intolerance, misinformation and vagaries of our present human society.

The Queen anticipates presiding over a small court (see #14) and a small realm. That’s fine. It will be a place where people are nurtured and as happy as they can be, where children are valued and LIFE is valued and everything else – anything that robs us of peace, including other people – are simply not allowed. Life is too hard for us NOT to support one another and try to ease each other’s way. That’s just the way it should be.

And so it is, and so it shall be, now and forever. The Queen has spoken.

The sun came shining through

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I am inexplicably optimistic this morning. It’s Monday, it’s winter (6 months left to go, and it’ll get much much worse before it gets better), almost exactly 6 weeks to go til Christmas – my least favorite holiday – and I haven’t even started thinking about presents. I’m facing the prospect of a new year still with my mother and still in this job. There are other ucky things on the immediate horizon – a doctor’s appointment, our annual All-Staff Meeting at work, starting a gym membership cuz it’s getting too snowy and cold to be outside. (Ugh.)

Other icky winter things: Shoveling. Boots. Coats. Hats. Mittens/gloves. Cold. Ridiculous heating bills for the house I don’t live in, and outrageous water bills cuz I have to run the water in the kitchen so the pipes don’t freeze. Cold. Crap driving and crap drivers. Did I mention shoveling? Oh, and it’s COLD. But the worst part –

No sun. For days and days and days. ~shudder~

However, I have new tires, so driving will be less scary this year and I won’t get stuck in the parking lot at work everyday like last year. Yay! I get a longevity check in December and a raise in January, so I’ll be a little richer. Yay! I have 2 additional days off this week and 6 additional days off in December. Yay!

I have good books to read and I will get more for Christmas and my birthday and while I’m sitting inside for hours and hours, unable to go outside cuz snow and cold and wind, I can read, read, read! Possible this winter, unlike the past few years, cuz I have introduced my mother to the wonder of downloadable audio books that she can listen to on the phone I gave her (and she has finally learned to use), with EARBUDS. So we don’t watch DVDs so much anymore, and we can sit together in our cozy living room and read our books.

That is such a good thing! Yay! There are many good things, and today I’m in a place mentally and emotionally in which I can see those good things and be grateful for them. I haven’t been there for a few weeks, and I’m almost afraid to write that or think that or say it out loud, cuz generally when the universe has any inkling that I’m feeling good, it goes out of its way to kick me in the teeth almost immediately.

Paranoid? Ya, maybe. Whatever.

I had a nice weekend, including a long walk yesterday in the sunshine, even though I had to keep my head focused on the ice under my boots so I didn’t fall, and a shorter, snowier walk on Saturday that was nice, too. I had a few chores to do, but mostly I read and ate well and walked and relaxed. It was good. It was restorative.

Now it’s back to work, and so far it’s a crappy Monday, but it’s a short week as I have Thursday and Friday off for Thanksgiving, my second favorite holiday. (Easter is my favorite holiday – Spring, rebirth; I get giddy thinking about it.) Also, our best cook/baker brought in cake, so there’s that. Cake makes everything better. Always.

I bought a turkey breast and a frozen pumpkin pie and I’m going to be spending much of Thursday cooking, but that’s okay. Turkey and mashed potatoes and crescent rolls and Sara Lee pumpkin pie with Cool Whip. It’ll be awesome. We usually go out for T-day dinner, but as mom doesn’t leave the house anymore, we’re staying in – which I’m all about this year. What could be better than being in my jammies smelling turkey roasting and pie baking, hanging out with my mom and the cats? Turkey sandwiches and pie all weekend. Yay!

Then 3 WHOLE DAYS of not really that much that has to be done. Regular chores – cooking, dishes, blah, blah, but nothing that requires a lot of effort or even being dressed. Walking (I’ll put pants on) if it’s not too late November-y, (the forecast looks promising), and reading (new book from the library I got on my walk yesterday), and eating, eating, eating.

Perfect. The last two Thanksgivings were fairly crappy, so I feel like I’m due a good one. Two years ago our sewer drain clogged and it was not pleasant being in the house for 4 days. (‘Nough said.) Last year, our dinner out was hella expensive and not very good, so it was a big¬† disappointment, and mom and I got in a big fight about something and it overshadowed the whole weekend.

So I’m optimistic. There are things I like about winter, and things I like about Christmas, and I’m going to try to focus on those things and let the rest go. Soon it will be my birthday and that’s great, and then St. Patrick’s Day, and Easter and then Spring. Spring. Spring! It goes quickly, I know.

“If winter comes, can spring be far behind?‚ÄĚ
‚Äē Percy Bysshe Shelley

Welcome winter.

 

 

 

Tell me yours and I’ll tell you mine

My first computer was a Coleco¬ģ Adam.

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You had to write the programs, type them into memory and save them on a tape drive that looked just like an audio cassette. I loved it. Mostly I used it as a word processor cuz I had a program for that, and I was in college so it was really handy for papers, etc. That was 1983. I LOVED it. I wrote other programs for it – games and other easy things – and I spent hours on it. I had it for a long time.

My next computer, after college, was an Apple IIc. I got a bank loan to buy it and an ImageWriter printer.

I had a 5 1/4″ and a 3.5″ floppy drive for it. No hard drive. No mouse. I LOVED it. I used it for years. I ordered software by mail from catalogs – Broderbund, mostly. The screen was all text, no images, of course, but it was awesome. I used it everyday to write stories and balance my checkbook and play games. I had it for a long time. At work, I used an Apple IIe:

Apple IIe

It had a modem and that was the first time I used email. I’m guessing that was about 1986 or ’87. I still have that computer and the modem. Up to that point we had used a Telex machine. Remember those? Yes, Virginia, there was a time when fax machines and email didn’t exist!

I got a modem for my IIc at home and learned how to connect to our local college’s BBS system and email, then later ftp. After that, things moved pretty quickly. I bought a Mac and joined eWorld, which was Apple’s online system, then AOL. Then finally, we had access to an reasonably inexpensive ISP here in my little town, and I had access to the WWW. Text at first, and then Netscape (1994) came along and the internet as we now know it started to take shape.

I had a series of Mac Performas, and then a Windows laptop and then a series of Windows towers and laptops. Early on I had a business designing websites (starting in 1995) and my own website for my business, which became a personal website after my business failed in 2000. In 2003 I started a blog on Journalspace, called Friday’s Child.

I LOVED blogging. I had always journaled on paper and loved writing, and now other people could read what I wrote! And comment! And I read what they wrote and we were a community! Sadly, Journalspace died, so I started a blog on my website using WordPress software. I don’t remember what it was called. Since then I’ve written 2 other “special project” blogs – not for public consumption – and I started this WordPress.com blog in 2008 after scuttling my website.

So, now, here we are. Why did I force you to go on that trip down Tech Memory Lane with me? Well, cuz I think it’s interesting, for one thing. A revolution in the way information is deciminated in a VERY short time historically. I was a part of it, in the way my mom can remember when there was no TV and my grandmother could remember when there was no radio.

Cool.

My geeky brain recognized the importance and potential of computers when I was young, and I have always been excited to be a part of the evolution of computer use and the internet. For all its imagined evils, the internet is an amazingly empowering thing. The blogsphere, especially, represents a revolution in the world of communication and information transfer among human beings in the last 20 years, and I’ve loved being a part of it.

As a writer, I’ve benefited enormously. I can publish whatever I want online whenever I want. That was not true even when I was in college – in order for a writer’s ¬†(or singer or movie maker or artist) work to be available to “the masses” he/she would have to pass through a publishing gatekeeper. Editors and movie producers and record producers held all the keys and could decide who “got in” and who didn’t.

For writers and photographers and artists, blogging has caused a dramatic shift in what it means to be successful. I won’t ever be published by a big house, or even a paper magazine, probably, but I’ve connected with 100s of people over the years through my writing, and that’s what matters to me.

Community is hard-wired into the human brain. The explosion of the internet – a network of networks – is remarkably like our brains in the way connections are formed and likeness is sought. We want to connect to others who are like us and the internet allows us to do that without physical presence. I can connect to the world sitting in my living room typing on my laptop.

As a young person, I didn’t know anyone who struggled with depression. Even though I knew a lot of people in high school and college, I didn’t know anyone who dealt with a mental illness in the way I did. I didn’t know I had a mental illness – something that was known and had a name. I just thought there was something really wrong with me and I found ways to manage life and stay alive in spite of it. On my own. I had friends, but I was really alone. I did everything I could to try to appear as normal as possible.

It was exhausting and lonely.

That changed when I got on the internet. I found information and found out I was not alone and that yes, there was something wrong with me, but it wasn’t my fault. It isn’t a character flaw, ¬†There are other people who feel like I do.¬†

What a revelation! When I started writing my blog and started really being myself online, I connected with people who were more like me than anyone I had ever known, and who supported me as I supported them. Through my blog and blogging friends I found other resources online that were helpful Рgroups and forums. It changed my life in that it changed who I believed I was. 

Online I was a writer and people liked me as I really am, not as I pretend to be to fit in in daily life. Anonymity is a two-edged sword online, though, and that’s where social media runs into trouble. People misrepresent themselves all the time, and that’s too bad, even if their intent isn’t criminal. ¬†Because the real power in the internet, and especially in blogging, is in really being able to be yourself and to connect to others like you –¬†as we really are.¬†Mask off, warts and all. Here I am, world! Anybody out there?

Yes, we’re out here. Ready to reassure you, ready to know you as you really are. No need to hide. Not here. Be yourself, tell us about yourself and we will welcome you. Tell your story. Post your photos, your art, tell us about your dreams and your failures. Make us laugh, make us cry, make us¬†feel¬†who you are and what you’ve been through. What has the experience of life on this planet been like for you? Tell me yours and I’ll tell you mine and we’ll discover that we’re not so different after all, and that we¬†are not alone.¬†

And that will make all the difference.

Thanks, Jenny, for the reminder.