A couple days ago I wrote a post about feeling sensitive to an offhand remark by a neighbor. A lot of people read this and many commented on it and some misinterpreted what I wrote, so I felt like a jerk, and frustrated that as a writer, I had not articulated my thoughts more clearly. So I took the post and the Facebook discussion down because I don’t like conflict and I didn’t feel like defending myself in what can be a very clumsy medium for discussion.
I keep thinking about why I write this blog in the first place. What makes me think people want to read about what I’m feeling? The explosion of blogs seems to indicate many people think their thoughts are worth sharing. And someone must be reading these things. Or maybe not. Are we writing to write or to be read?
When you put something out there for the world to read, you can’t expect everyone to like it. You can’t take the response personally. But you still do. I have never developed a thick skin. I certainly invite and accept constructive criticism about my professional writing, and am always better for it. Every writer needs an editor.
But when you write something on a blog and people comment, it’s like they’re commenting on your heart. At the risk of overquoting, I was relieved to read Momastery today: http://momastery.com/blog/2013/11/07/idea-title-im-even-sure-read-nets-well-call-nets/, in which Glennon talks about feeling nearly skinless. Perhaps exacerbated by my chronic sleep deprivation, I so relate to this feeling of tenderness and fragility. Maybe it’s also related to being a mom, especially a mom of an infant who is so vulnerable and dependent on me and who just had surgery for pete’s sake. How could that not make anyone feel a little emotionally wobbly?
So I’m getting back on the saddle. I’m going to try to think of what truths to tell that matter and I will take deep breaths when people respond with their own. As Glennon says, “WE CAN DO HARD THINGS.” I am already doing many hard things. What’s one more?