So 6yearhangover started a Gratitude Group and I am so excited about it. After I made my first post there a few days ago, it felt great. Yesterday, I made my second post and today my third. It feels so good to think about and write out what I am grateful for! Thank you to 6yearhangover for this wonderful idea and opportunity! (It just started this week and we will post in the group Monday through Friday; you can visit www.6yearhangover.wordpress.com if you want more information).
Today is also Day 60 of not drinking any alcohol for me and I am grateful for that! And we will see how this goes, but at Day 60, I think I am ready to open up this blog in case any of the members of the Gratitude Group or others are interested in reading it. I am going to let some blogosphere contacts know I have changed the setting and on Monday, I will post the link in the Gratitude Group.
And I have a friend in the UK who I have “met” through this whole process and I am going to let her know. She and I have really connected and I am so grateful for that! I feel like I have come in contact with some really amazing people in the last 60 Days.
So if you have decided to visit, welcome! I am still nervous about changing the setting from private here. I know the writing is a bit boring guys! I so admire the writing of 6yearhangover, Unpickled (www.unpickled.wordpress.com), Mrs. D. (livingwithoutalcohol.blogspot.com), Belle (tiredofthinkingaboutdrinking.wordpress.com), and so many others!
But I guess it is not about the quality of the writing; it is about letting things out and getting some thoughts out of my head and on paper (or more accurately onscreen). I have been doing this all alone in this blog for 8 weeks. I started this blog for me to get going on some goals, following the example of some very brave people. But I was too nervous and self-conscious to have it be accessible (who would want to read it anyway I thought?).
And to be honest, internet safety is one of my things. I preach to my kids about this a lot. So it felt strange to then start a blog for all the world to access if anyone so desired! But I have learned in 8 weeks that the community of people who visit these blogs are generally very kind and genuine and helpful.
Sometimes I laugh though when I think about a book I enjoyed so much, Where’d You Go Bernadette? In it the main character was a quirky unemployed architect with some social anxiety issues. She ended up hiring a virtual assistant from India, and for a very small fee, the assistant (through email instructions and the power of the internet) would “run” lots of errands from India for Bernadette in Seattle – i.e, make dinner reservations, research a trip to Antarctica, and various other odd jobs. The virtual assistant became a friend and confidante to Bernadette; she became the “person” she confided in the most! (Spoiler alert): Unfortunately, and this was just a subplot in the book, the virtual assistant was part of an identity theft ring and ultimately the FBI got involved.
So again, I kept going back to internet safety. And also, every time I thought of changing the setting, I felt even more vulnerable. Wouldn’t it feel strange to have personal thoughts and feelings recorded that can be accessed by anyone via the internet? Luckily for me, none of you are part of an identity theft ring or work for the FBI, right?
On the flipside, I am seeing some amazing things happening at some of my favorite blogs. Reading from start to finish one day, it was amazing to see how Mrs. D’s blog grew from the exciting day she got her first comment, to gaining lots of followers, to now publishing a book and helping so many people! And I remember the day I found Unpickled’s blog, and starting reading it from the first post to the current post. And now we get to hear her lovely voice on The Bubble Hour. And I can’t say enough about Belle and her kindness and how much she is helping people. With the 6yearhangover blog, it is so refreshing to read about someone who is going through early sobriety now. He likewise is so kind and giving and funny! It feels really good to laugh because, sometimes, if you don’t laugh, you’ll cry!
So going back to my little baby blog, to be even more honest about why I had this private, I was also afraid to make it accessible because of my fear of failure. If nobody knew about the blog and I changed my mind on some things, I could just delete the blog, right?! So I originally set this up as private.
You will read in the posts that I have been very conflicted at times, because I have wanted to share and get feedback. And again, I know mostly it will be a similar community of wonderful people, whose names I see commenting on others’ blogs, visiting here. And I am sure the comments will be incredibly helpful!
Until today, however, I have not gotten my nerve up enough to change the setting. It just took some time to let it sink in. Sometimes, I would lie in bed thinking, “Is this really real, this amazing internet community?” Or is this some scam and I am becoming Bernadette?
Ladies and gentleman, believe it or not, it is real! People are so kind and genuine here, as I talked about back in May, there really is kindness on the internet! But I am a big city girl (not New York, but another great City in the U.S .A.), so I felt like I better take this slowly.
But now, 60 Days later, I have gained a lot of trust in this process too from the amazing things I have seen happening at other blogs. This has motivated me too to change the setting.
Wish me luck! I am excited too because I may actually help somebody else out there in addition to myself, and that would be a really good way to give back! I don’t expect a lot of traffic, but just maybe something I said or say going forward will help somebody . I do believe that the theme of this blog, thinking along the lines of “Today is the first day of the rest of your life!” will help somebody forgive himself or herself for some regrets. Today and every day is a new fresh start!
And I think I knew this long ago, but I am re-learning that it really does help to write things out. And it helps to share. I don’t post every day or even every week. But it is nice to have this place to come and write. And it is nice to have a record of how I have been feeling and what I was thinking at certain times or on various days. And it will be great to get some feedback now. I don’t get too specific about people in my life at all or even anecdotes. It is more about what I am thinking and feeling.
Now, if you know me and/or happen to figure out who I am, or if you are a person in my real life who I end up inviting to read this, or you discover it somehow and realize you know me, (could I be more anxious about this?!), please, as Jean said in Unpickled, “please tread lightly through these pages” and be open-minded about why I have started a blog. I have seen it work with so many others I have mentioned above!
It is not an easy decision to open myself up to the world, but I know from everything I am reading that it will help keep me stay motivated as I continue “on my way today!” i.e, Viatoday. I am grateful to the bloggers and the ladies of The Bubble Hour who opened my eyes to so many different ideas on how to accomplish the many personal goals I have. And they did this without even knowing they did – but by simply writing and sharing in such an altruistic manner. It is am amazing world in 2014.
Happy Friday everyone!