Thursday, 2 June 2016

Who Says It Doesn't Matter?

Lately I've been contemplating the pros and cons of putting my thoughts out here on the Internet.

I began this blog mainly as a distraction to combat postpartum depression, if I'm honest. I didn't know anyone in our small town and Husband often worked away. I was alone with a baby--madly in love with him, yes--but lonely and feeling like my own identity was being lost in a sea of diapers.

At the same time, I got off Facebook because I realized it made me feel lousy--reading people passive-aggressively attack their spouses or complain about their lives or politics or, worse yet, present their lives as "perfect" when in reality I knew otherwise. For me, the negatives outweighed the positives so I cancelled my Facebook account and got busy reading about things I was interested in.

I loved the Simple, Green, Frugal Co-operative and began to follow several of the contributing blogs. I read Mother Earth News and found myself getting passionate about things like gardening, simplifying and becoming more eco-friendly. Over the years since that difficult time with a newborn (and I don't want to sound like I was always on the computer instead of tending my wee boy, because I wasn't), many wonderful blogs have come and gone out of my life. People with common interests or wonderful writing styles or just some certain quality that drew me in and made me check back again and again to see how they were doing. Those blogs made a difference for me, a big difference.

And so, when the other day I saw a new blog post from Gene Logsdon, an elderly farmer and writer in the US, titled "Farewell, Dear Gene", my heart just sank and I welled up with tears to read that he had passed on after a private battle with cancer. And it made me realize how important our writing is to each other without our ever knowing, really knowing, who we are writing to.

What I loved best about Gene's blog "The Contrary Farmer" was that he put into words so many things that I feel about a simple life in the country. He did it knowledgeably, informatively, humorously, and with a wonderful writing style that I could only someday hope to achieve. He was a gentleman and I so very much enjoyed reading his blog when sleep evaded me as it often does. As someone wrote in one of the many comments on his passing, Gene validated my interest in having a homestead and raising my kids to grow their own food and be as self-sufficient as possible. In a sense, he gave me permission to be myself and not seek the approval of my peers over my own happiness. He did that without trying to sell anything or promote himself and also without attracting that particular type of reader that wants to argue and denigrate and outdo. Basically, he created something very special, he was very special, and I'm thankful to live in a world where the writing of a humble contrary farmer can land in my inbox every Wednesday and I can feel like I'm chatting with my dad--if my dad was the type to chat.

In one way or another, most of the blogs that I have followed and continue to follow validate my own interests in one way or another. I'm very grateful to the people that write about their lives and doings without thought to payment (for most of my favorite bloggers are doing it simply for the joy of it). I'm glad they take the time to observe and interpret and share--I'm seeing and learning things I could never possibly be exposed to otherwise. I'm touched to have readers return to my own little corner and leave a comment here and there, and I realize now that we are all just encouraging each other in our own ways. Thanks for that, and thanks for reading. I suppose I'll keep blogging because today I feel like it connects people in a way that actually matters, and that's very important to me.


6 comments:

  1. You are an extremely thoughtful writer and I find your blog to be a breath of fresh air in a very tainted world (okay this is me being pessimistic...the usual...). I am very happy that you will continue blogging.

    But you do have a very nice voice that the world can benefit from. If you still think you may go private at some point, one suggestion is to perhaps start another blog, even using a pseudonym. You could use that blog for more professional writings and columns etc. As your boys get bigger you may want to spend more time writing and earning money from it and having another blog may help. But I would definitely suggest buying a domain name and self hosting so that you own your output - well worth the $100 or so annual costs.

    Oooo baby lamb! Cute :-)
    Have a good weekend!

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    1. Thanks Pru. I think you're definitely right about purchasing a domain name. This is all the technical stuff that baffles me. But it's worth the time and money to have it done right and own it. Thanks for the suggestion:)

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  2. Hi, glad to hear your thoughts and that you will keep on blogging! I totally agree regarding the blog world: it's a good feeling to find a like-minded community. I've never done Facebook and a lot of people don't understand.

    So sad to hear of Gene Logsdon's death. I read one of his books a few years ago; I didn't know he had a blog! I will be checking in to that. Thanks for all you do : )
    Jo Ann

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    1. Hi Jo Ann, yes it is sad that Gene Logsdon has passed on--but to live a long (mostly) healthy life doing what one loves is such a success. I'm just so glad he shared his life and stories with us. I bought several of his books as gifts at Christmas. I've still got one to read (yes, I'm the type of person that gives others the books I want to read myself lol). I'm so glad you enjoy the blog, thanks for reading!

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  3. I've felt some of the same - does it matter if I write? Does anyone read it? But you're right - it connects us, however fleetingly. And as a 30something mama, those connections can be hard to find.

    Keep writing; I'll keep reading.

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    1. Thank you, Kirsten. It feels better to know who is out there reading. I'm glad you stopped by :)

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