love the setup of my blog since moving it to wordpress. I love that people can comment and see comments. I love that people can subscribe, and I think it is crazy fun that so many people get my blogs in their emails (shout out to subscribers, thank you!). I love that those subscribers who don’t want to share their comments publicly can just email me back, and that they share so much. Showin’ some bloggin’ love!
One of the things people have been talking about a lot is how my blog has changed. I have maintained since starting to blog in 2003 (before it was called “blogging”), that I would be candidly open even with my struggles. This disclosure was important to me, not because of bad boundaries but because I was living and working in a community and environment where people did not know the difference between healthy and not, how to grow, or how to become. They needed to see how to recover from mistakes, and I had plenty of mistakes from which to recover. It was a teaching tool, and I was the guinea pig – whose mistakes were all very public.
The difficulty I did not foresee in this process was the needing to change blog addresses – because of hackers and because of evolving (moving from LiveJournal to MySpace, leaving the drama of MySpace for Blogspot, upgrading to the for-realz on WordPress). This was a difficulty in that it was a hassle, but also surprisingly each move was an existential crisis of review. What color am I now? How do I define me now? Which picture is the me I see?
The last year was the culmination of the Emily World years since 1994.
Yes, I am that old.
I am not done. I am still becoming.
But cochlear implants and getting baptized were THAT BIG.
They changed me. I am still me, though. More me, even. But I am not the same.
This is as it should be. I am glad I am not the same as I was in 1994. Yikes.
For my writing, what changed was not only better boundaries, but other practical pieces. I had to learn I could not blog where I would be later that day or too many people showed up. I had to learn not to blog my address, or license tag, or other safety issues. Other changes came as the rules for Emily World changed: my language used to be filthy awful, but then I got baptized and learned to express myself – and all ranges of feelings – without using cheap words that were way more offensive than I knew. Other changes came because my pattern of behavior changed: I still go to events, attend festivals, and enjoy a good celebration… but I enjoy them sober, and more often with real friends and not just as a presence to document an event.
I have become 3D, I think. More real. More me.
After I got baptized, I wrote a lot about my faith as I discovered it. I was not trying to be pushy, but it was the exciting thing in my life. Some friends stuck around, celebrating with me just because I was getting healthy and strong; others didn’t want to hear it no matter what. Some friends worked hard to understand, even though it was not their choice, just so that they could understand me. But then, as I wrote what I learned, my diving into sacred texts became deep – where the waters are dark and the stars are bright, and the journey became much more personal and sacred than what I could share. On the other hand, sometimes I blogged quotes just because I loved them so much I didn’t want to lose them. Some friends thought that was funny, because they knew me and my nerdy self, but it didn’t make for entertaining blogs.
All that to say that now as I settle into this baptized-implanted-space, I will be sharing some of what I learn as well as the writing I love to do. This is a good balance for me, for being able to share what I am thinking about and learning, play for the fun writing, and all coming together for the professional writing. It’s just me, just Emily.
I worked a long time to be just me.
And I am glad of it.
And I am glad for readers who give me such feedback, who do such sharing, who do the hard work of unfolding as we “become” together.
Also, your emails (from subscribers) are hilarious. Thank you for making me smile.