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Self Censorship

standard February 21, 2007 Leave a response

My mother doesn’t like it when I write about poop. My father doesn’t like it when I write about him. I worry about coworkers finding my posts about my job. I second guess myself constantly. Ironically my best writing takes place when I forget about the people who are reading what I write, when I’m so taken by a subject or an event that I don’t watch what I say.
I started blogging years ago back when motherhood was a figment of my imagination and knitting was the focus of my evenings. I rarely talked about anything controversial and told anyone and everyone about my blog. Over the years it became more and more of an outlet for me, a place to work through some issues, a place to vent about the trials of the day.
A year ago I abandoned my original blog and moved to this one. i had become too self conscious about my readers and found that I couldn’t write any more. I choose to start from scratch, and found my voice again. I needed the outlet, needed to write, needed the discipline of the white screen facing me each and every day. As I gained confidence I shared the address with friends and eventually with family.
I live far from most of my family and many of my friends. I don’t get to talk to them all that often. But, life takes place between phone calls and emails sometimes there’s just too much to cover in a twenty minute phone call. I like that they have this window into my life, into my heart. Sometimes it’s easier to write about something and have a friend say “I read that you were sad” or “I’m glad things are getting better” than talking to them directly about it. In real life you pick and choose what you tell a friend or a parent. You shield the one, or hide some unsavory fact from another. Too many different people read this blog for me to do that, so friends and parents have read things that I would not normally have shared with them. In the end it’s worked out for the best. I’ve gotten advice and help from people I might not have turned to, and I’ve talked about things with others that I might not have dared bring up on my own. Knowing that people will be reading and possibly commenting keeps me honest, with myself and with my readers. It’s a reflection of me, of my soul. The upshot of all that is that this blog has brought me closer to some people, and, unfortunately, has alienated me from others. But at least I feel that some people know me better than they ever could have otherwise.
That said, it takes a lot out of me to bare my soul and some nights I just don’t have it in me. I can barely remember what happened during the day, let alone make it witty or interesting. Every so often I have an epiphany, the rest of the time I just go through the motions. So sometimes I talk about poop, because that’s what my life is about.

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