Sunday, July 10, 2005

Blog Mirrors Life Mirrors Blog

Every experience is an opportunity to learn a lesson...if only we will take note of it, and examine what it reveals about ourself and about how we interact with others.

I've noticed on a few other blogs that the question continues to come up about "who we are" on the blogs. I have come to the realization that I am ME -- In fact, I SCREAM 'ME' on my blog both in what I write...and what I don't. But more than that, not only is the way that I 'behave' on the blogs a direct reflection of how I am in life, it is also an opportunity for me to learn and express lessons that I learn in life...and for me to take a third-person look back at myself.

I just got about 1/3 of the way through a post when I realized that I would never post it. So I scrapped it, completely. While the purpose of it was simply to point out a life lesson that I have learned recently, I became fearful that friends would read it, put together who the characters in the story were, and then it would get back to that individual and there would be hurt feelings. That was not my intention at the outset, but if there was any chance of offending someone, then I'd rather it just not be published. When the truth of the matter is, the same thing has happened probably 7-8 times since the original incident, so it really wasn't directed at one specific person. Of course, this is not anything I would SAY to a person, so why in the world would I write it. Aha -- real-life personality reflected in my personal blog etiquette.

So instead of giving the background, I will write the lesson in a nutshell here:
1) Don't ask a question of a personal nature in front of other people or in front of that person's children if the potential answer could be 'not good news.' If the outcome is good -- they will let you know! If the outcome is not good news, then you may be asking for painful and personal information in front of people whom the person would rather not know the details. So just as I wouldn't expose someone's offense in a public setting on a blog for fear of upsetting them, I would expect that others exercise the same courtesy by not exposing something personal in a public setting...no matter how well-meaning it started out.

I have also found that there are things that I am highly combative about, and other things where I would just rather crawl under a rock than to be confrontational. This is certainly true of my life outside the blogosphere -- And I have found that to be true in my blog, as well. There are topics and issues where I can rant on endlessly, and yet there are other topics that I simply will not broach because they are not where I care to spend my mental energy. One of those being politics. Don't get me wrong, I have strong and adamant opinions on politics and read and listen quite a bit about what is going on in the world. However, I have found that I do not care to post on other blogs that are intensely partisan, not necessarily political...but partisan. Those who post emphatically for or against the administration have my admiration in that they will step out on what they believe. That said, it is not MY style nor inclination. I believe what I believe...it is not immutable, but it is quite steadfast. I will not expend my mental energy and turn my brain inside out trying to 'convert' someone who clearly has no interest in listening to the counterpoints of the opposing side (both sides included here). To try and 'convince' a die-hard Bush hater that there are good and worthy elements in his policy is to expend time and energy equivalent to the pursuit of boiling the ocean. And lo and behold, I tend to shy away from conversations or blog exchanges that are infused with emotion from both sides where there is clearly not a discussion but more of a dumping ground for opinion and justification of said opinion (from both sides).

The second lesson here that I've learned is:
2) Sometimes it is healthy and imperative to take the position of "Why bother?"


And the third lesson, I will state before I give the explanation:
3) The longer you are away from something, the harder it is to reweave it into the fabric of your life.

This is true with blogging, for sure. I have been away from blogging for a few weeks, and it was difficult to start a new post. It is true with housecleaning. The longer you wait to do the laundry, the more overwhelming it is...same with cleaning the bathroom, organizing the closet, cleaning the shower, or putting away odds and ends. (And let's not discuss the state of the garage...it's just too painful. In fact, I am considering renting a bulldozer just to get a fresh start.) And of course, it is especially true in relationships. The longer that you hold someone at arm's length, the more inclined those people are going to be to never come closer than arm's length. It's like the science tests with the rats in the maze where there is a clear barrier between them and the cheese. And after so many attempts of banging into the glass to get the cheese, they won't even try to go near it even after the glass partition has been removed. They have been 'trained' that no matter how hard they try that they will never get there. If I were to take inventory of my relationships I wonder how many have been short changed because of the glass partitions I put up -- people are able to 'see' me, but not able to have a relationship with me, and then they give up trying.

The interesting thing about the third lesson is that it is in direct contrast to lesson #2.

So again, blogosphere is a direct parallel to life. There are lessons that we learn that seem so concrete at times, only to learn a lesson a second later that exposes it as a house of cards.

Perhaps that is the lesson for today...

4 Comments:

At 2:27 PM, Anonymous SusieQ said...

I'm glad you are back in commission and blogging once more. You are a fine writer and a thoughtful person in more ways than one. Hopefully, I can return tonight when I have more time and leave some comments about your most recent post on lessons learned.

 
At 3:41 PM, Blogger BarbaraFromCalifornia said...

Excellent lessons to be learned and articulated so beautifully. I wish that post would have appeared about 3 weeks ago.

Good to see you back. I sent you a couple of emails. I hope you have received them.

Many blessings to you, Whit.

 
At 6:52 PM, Blogger Bill said...

Whit, some very excellent lessons here. I had to laugh when you mentioned a bulldozer for the garage, as I said exactly that to my wife this weekend!!

Like you, while fairly political myself, I tend to avoid political discussions these days, especially on blogs, as they seem to disintegrate into personal attacks rather than discussions of issues... so, as you put it, "why bother".

Thanks for stopping by my place, I hope your Dad lets me know what he thinks... and.. thanks for the link!

 
At 8:25 PM, Anonymous SusieQ said...

Bill, I agree with you about political discussions. I like a good debate that informs. But I don't like one that ends up a shouting match in which nobody makes any sense and feelings get hurt.

Whit, I am very much like you. What you see of me in blogging is who I am. I try to be careful about what I post. Before I post anything I ask myself if I would feel comfortable with my friends and family reading it. If not, then I don't post it.

 

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