I don’t know what makes me want to write. The process of this blogging thing is actually completely out of my comfort zone and mostly terrifying. I am a hyper sensitive phobic who continually worries if someone is making fun of me or talking shit on me. I want people to be nice!! I want to be nice! I originally thought that maybe I was writing to try to free some of my demons and things I struggle with. Nah! I keep those fairly tucked away. As it is…I think I just write because I like it. My last blog has stirred a lot of emotion in a lot of different folks. For some it’s because their journey has been similar to mine, they have battled the bulge and come to accept their bodies. For others they recognize the pain of a little girl who was emotionally damaged by adults who were incredibly unkind in numerous ways. For others it was sadness for not recognizing the hurt little kid. I have got to clarify one thing though. I had a beautifully loving family. I found love and peace with my dear mom and dad and grandparents. They had a horribly difficult job trying to undo the 8 hours a day that I felt like I was in a well drowning. For little people who can’t express themselves like an adult, the ability to attach words to the emotions is impossible for a 7 year old. The rest of my childhood was luckily filled with a lot of good things. If the last blog made you think, then I feel like I was successful in my job.
Since I was a child I would escape into whatever book I was reading at the time. It was a chance to escape the hard parts of growing up and I could associate with the characters of Judy Blume’s book. Some days I felt like Margaret. Other times I felt like Jill Brenner, the fifth grader in her book Blubber. I could associate with the stories and feel like I was part of the bigger world and not the only one. The books were comforting and they caused me to think differently and even helped me to survive some dark days. Reading and writing were like old friends. I continued to write to myself as that little kid and diaries were like hidden treasure that you didn’t want anyone else to see. You could write in private and vent and say whatever you wanted and it was OK, because it was private! People do that now and it is called Facebook. They write and say whatever they wish, no matter who it hurts, it isn’t private anymore. It wasn’t long ago that I found a little diary at my Moms house. It made my heart rush to pick it up because I knew that what was inside was going to force me to look back. When I look back on my elementary school years, I disassociate. I don’t remember things as Elizabeth, I look back with an out of body feeling and feel sorry for that blonde haired, blank eyed little- round girl. I don’t let it be much part of the grown me. I have lived it. I have beat it. I have healed. So I don’t know exactly why I still do that, but it is my defense mechanism hard at work to protect me. I fumbled with the little lock on the book fully expecting to be wowed by my ability to form sentences at age 12, but instead, I found the regular entries like “Played with Heidi in the barn yard. It was bad, the cows have died and boy do they stink!” “Another day at school. YUCK. I hate Mr…. he was so mean….” and then there was the last entry, February 27, 1980, “Drew came to get me from school. Papoo died. I will miss him :(.” That is the last entry and after that I didn’t keep a diary until college. Papoo was my grandfather and indeed I miss him. I was a little kid trying to sort out the meaning of life and death. I let grief shut off my willingness to write in my diary even to myself for a long time. Life kind of did the same thing for all of these years. I had an internal monologue that would cause even the strongest woman to crumble. My words were so mean that I would convince myself that my writing wasn’t good enough for people to read or much less give a shit about! I believed that I was stupid for thinking I could do it or much of anything for that matter. I was in a dark place. Whether or not it is true doesn’t matter to me much now! I am not letting me be my worst enemy. I am trying to remember to speak kindly to myself and it makes speaking kindly to others easy. By the way, my journal now looks so different, it is my gratitude journal!!
Today, I got another God wink. His timing is always right and the signs are clear as a bell. I was reminded of the goodness of people. I was given an “atta girl” from someone I highly respect (thank you Kevin!). It proved that I don’t know who is reading these things and I certainly don’t know who’s life my writing might affect. I do know this. We are all in this boat together. Do not poke holes in the boat. Kindness and support can literally change lives! Why just look how you have changed mine!! I am eternally grateful for your kindness and your encouragement. Heidi, remember that day in the barn yard???!!! I can still picture that!!!
Until then…..be kind.
“If you want to play, play. If you want to eat, eat. If you want to dance, dance.”
–James ‘Seamus’ Cleland–