This past week I put in nearly 40 hours of school volunteering. (Or maybe eleventy hundred. I lost count.) Some at home but most at the school. Does this mean they have officially “gotten” me? Am I now a Stepford? Let’s say no. I did have fun doing it, though. I know. The first step is admitting there is a problem. So really? I don’t really have a “new” post worthy of a Newsflash, but I do have something you may not have read yet. Seeing as I know you don’t all follow me around the ‘net to see what I have to say. And the links in the post? Follow them. Some amazing women writers were quoted. You may find a great new read!
The past week I have been adrift in volunteer work, a new freelance job, house cleaning and one other thing. What was that? Oh, I remember. Celebrating my eighth year being clean from a painful and life altering drug addiction that nearly took away everything I cherish and love. I’ll be honest. I wanted to find be around at least one person who “got it” and would realize what I was going through on that day. It was a day that I desperately needed to be understood and on familiar ground with another person.
Blogging is much the same way for many people. Some people read blogs as a way to find others that are going through the same life issues, have the same interests or maybe even just because they entertain them. And then we have the bloggers themselves. Those who put themselves right out there in front of the Internet and share to let it all lay bare. Those writers who dig deep into their souls and pull out a part of it and share it. Hoping it connects with someone else. Sometimes hoping someone else will connect with them.
It is not surprising that in this week I found Redsy. As she began her Odyssey to stop drinking she posting these words that so resonated with me that I wept remembering the feelings she described.
I’ve found a place to go every day to talk about my problem with drinking. To listen to others talk about their struggles and fears and recovery. And it is a complete and total miracle. If I’d known how great these meetings would be, I honestly would have stopped all this wine nonsense a long time ago.
But of course I wouldn’t really. Because outside of those wonderful comforting loving meetings, life is once again scary as hell. And this time I’m standing there without my favored weapon. Facing an army of tigers with a pea shooter and one bean, which is how we’re supposed to feel at the beginning (I’m told).
And I feel like the outside layer of my skin (the adult, fake-put-together part) has been taken away and I’m this sea creature –shell-less and shaky–lolling around waiting for sunlight to reach all the long way down to the ocean floor.
I read through her pages and found her four months later with these words:
So it’s been 75 days since my last drink and nearly 4 months since I began this odyssey — to sober up, wake up to my life, start a daily spiritual practice something like worshiping a higher power, something like trying to be a more loving person.
As slowly the cravings, mental and physical subside, replaced by new rituals and people and habits, hope increases. Hope that there is more that I can give, more to experience, and a greater sense of gratitude folded into the dailyness of things.
All is not perfect happiness by any stretch, but broken down into 24 hours segments, I can say I haven’t felt this hopeful and resourceful for years and years.
I cheered for her. I wanted to shout to her that I get it and I am so proud of her. I remember hitting each milestone month of being clean and you can damn well bet it is worthy of a celebration. She is now 5 months sober. I am 8 years clean. We are alike and we can both learn from each other. That is the beauty of putting it out there. I don’t know her. But really? I know her.
I also came across a post about loss written by Jenn of Breed ‘Em and Weep that caused me to suck my breath in and hold it as I read it. I cried with the writer as she described her feelings. I felt my own anguish over losses in my own life (though different from hers, losses nevertheless) and I felt her pain as she knew that things would never be the same. I could feel her anguish as she knew the lives of her children would never be the same after this peaceful night of sleep– not knowing.
Tomorrow we will tell the girls about a difficult loss. It is a peculiar thing to sit on the edge of your child’s bed, watching her sleep, knowing that tomorrow you will say something that will stop her heart briefly and force her through a door she would not have chosen herself. Children do not take kindly to loss, and why should they? As adults we can barely stand it, barely have the ability to comprehend the who-was-who-now-isn’t, the what-was-that-now-is-lost.
I watch her dark profile. She is a beautiful girl, as still sometimes in her waking hours as she is right now, asleep. I think, This is her last night of not knowing. Tomorrow we take away the not-knowing.
When I first read the post I didn’t even know what the loss was but it did not matter. I felt it. I felt her loss. I felt the losses in my life. I felt her turmoil as a mother. I remembered that late night knowing I had something to tell my own children that would forever bring them from before to after. From innocence to life-changing. Her ability to open up and share from the bottom of her heart was so universal while still being so personal, you were not only there with her, you were at that place in your own life where you went through your own loss. That is the incredible power of blogging.
You see, when bloggers really open up and share, we find a way to connect, find support and feel as if someone out there gets us. To those of you who bare your souls, thank you. I appreciate and understand how hard that is. I have found bloggers who write about just about everything. They share what they know with people who may need or want to hear it.
I can find bloggers who help me with support for my addiction, the death of my Mom, my stillborn son, and my frustrations and dilemmas in parenting. And when I read the following quote from Mamma Loves, I realized that there is a certain type of blogging that is harder to find.
Mamma Loves called it to the carpet when she wrote:
What I’ve noticed though is that there seems to be one topic that remains fairly off limits (unless addressed anonymously). I understand why. Many people have discussed their reasons for not talking about it. I see this in my real life friendships too.
I just have to ask though…when will we all stop pretending like marriage is easy??
I love that question. I would love more people to just say it. “This marriage thing? Good. Love it. But, damn, it can be hard.” I know many divorced bloggers who will talk all about it. Or bloggers who openly admit they are in a bad marriage. But what about those of us who are in good marriages and are happy? Just something she asked that I thought I bring to the table since we are talking about baring our hearts and souls in blogging.
The bottom line is blogging has power. A mighty strong power. Blogging connects people. We can find others who get where we have been, where we are and where we are going. And that is vital at certain times in our lives. So, bloggers, it is okay to bare your soul. Some of us need it. Most of us admire it. And there are even a few of us who are counting on it.
Comments are acting wonky so if you try to leave one and it won’t let you, please let me know. You can always email it to me and I will post it for you. No idea what is wrong. Sorry!
Cross posted on BlogHer
Thanks for the new sites. As for that one from MamaLoves? Oh yes. Hell yes. Marriage is tough. It’s the reason my first one didn’t survive. I never knew how tough because my parents made it look so easy.
I learned – when I married Mr. Hot – that I was willing to work my ass off to make this one work. And so far, 17 years later? It’s working just fine. 😉 But damn. Sometimes, it’s sooooo freakin’ hard.
Ree’s last blog post..I Don’t Think There Was A Camera
I’ve read your posts a few times now and this one really hit home. Thank you for putting into words exactly how I feel about blogging. I’ve only been doing it a few months now but already I feel like I’ve connected more with people I’ve never met than some of those I see everyday. And damn right! marriage is hard. I have a good marriage for 15 years but there have definitely been times where I wonder “if it was meant to be”. I am someone who puts in on the table and I sooo appreciate communicating with others who aren’t afraid to be honest. Thanks!
I have been blogging for about 4 years. I started a blog as a place to vent about the people whose heads I wanted to rip off. Now, I have 4 of my own plus one that I contribute to. Blogging has always been some sort of therapy for me and it has brought me several really cool people that I have connected with.
Your post today sums up the way I have felt since I wrote my first post. I am thankful that I stumbled in here. 🙂
Hang in there!!! Thanks for your blog – Peace
lookingforlifeshumor’s last blog post..Church Musings
The written word possesses the awesome power to literally change lives. Think about it – all you’re doing is reading about another’s experiences…and yet it can resonate so much that your own life’s viewpoint is never the same again.
Thanks for sharing such a well-written post.
Barbara Ling (aka Owlbert)’s last blog post..Easy way to let people Twitter your blog posts – TinyURL plugin usable for tweets!
I don’t know what got me back to your blog,hun…but what a blessing.My net will be back up and running,if all goes well,tomorrow…but here at work,Websense Blocker blocks all blogs.But for some reason I went to my Home Yahoo page and was scanning my links,and seen yours.I remembered that your blog doesn’t get blocked and quickly come straight here,and what an eye opener this post has been.I really believe my Higher Power lead me here.Most things that you blogged and the others’ blogged fit me to a “T”,and I had to keep reading through blurry eyes.Tears of joy,tears of heartache,guilt,and many more feelings leaped in the pit of my stomach and in my heart.The addiction.The losses.Explaining death to my girls…explaining why Mommy is going away for a while(prison)….oh,how we can understand each other in so many ways.Maybe not an identical ordeal,but something JUST as devastating.I suppose this is why I am so happy that I can FINALLY get my internet back up tomorrow….I’ve blogged since 2001,and it has became an addiction,just reading how others deal w/ similar situations…or the good feeling I get inside when I can relate to someone and offer my shoulder or a few kind words in hopes that it may help someone.Unfortunately,due to the corporation I work for,I had to close my 1st blog…I unloaded too much info for some of the higher-up’s to probably understand,and didn’t want my soul cleansing to interfere w/ my job.Now I feel somewhat censored,since a co-worker googled and found my blogs.Sometimes I just say WTF,and keep typing.LOL
Anyways….congratulations on your clean time lil missy!!!You are such an inspiration,ya know.Keep up the good work,and thanks soooo much for sharing this post.Really.I can hardly wait to link this page from my blog tomorrow so others can hopefully get the understanding that I got when I read this (3 times,btw) 🙂
Tamara’s last blog post..Happy Valentine’s Day from Tammi
Life moves so fast now, but with blogging, you can slip inside moments, line after delicious line of detail, emotional and intellectual, delivering you to another place, or better yet, to a place you could swear you’ve been.
amanda’s last blog post..Reckoning heartbreak
I found my way to your blog via Mir @ Woulda Coulda. I have to say, that was one of the best posts I’ve read. Ever. Thanks for sharing yourself with us!
Great post, just stumbled across your blog. Have to say that this is one of my favorite “mom” blogs.
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