Over time, this blog has become a creative outlet for me to express myself to a community that I’ve come to appreciate and connect with. It’s also become a cathartic release for me. And a way for me to use big words on days when I often just utter monosyllable sentences.
But it didn’t begin that way. In the beginning, I wrote only for me.
I started this blog in early spring of this year. My original intent was never to make this blog public. It began as a way for me to capture my thoughts about parenthood and to record some of the moments my children created for me that I knew I would eventually forget. It began as the digital baby book to replace the shoebox of memorabilia that I had never actually put in their real baby books.
And so, I began writing. I went back and found all of the post-it note chicken scratches I had stashed away in a shoebox. Then I painstakingly transcribed them into chronologically ordered blog posts. And once I had that done, I wrote some more.
I didn’t post every week in the beginning. But if something noteworthy happened with the kids that day, I’d jot it down onto a sticky so it wouldn’t be permanently lost in my mental vacuum. And at the end of the day, it went into the blog.
I never envisioned anyone besides myself and possibly my immediate family would ever actually read it.
Anonymous changed all that.
After I had been writing for a few months, I got my first comment. Left by Anonymous. There was no email address. Or link to a website. And it wasn’t eloquently worded or verbose… just a few simple lines, and a smiley face emoticon. But that comment changed the way I looked at my writing.
All of the sudden, I knew someone was reading. And that knowledge has motivated me more than I can express. When I’m tired. Or sick of blogging. Or simply unmotivated to put my thoughts into words.
I need to acknowledge Anonymous more often. Because, I admit, I get caught up in numbers sometimes. It’s hard not to.
Sometimes I’ll dash something off after I’ve had a few beers late a night. And sometimes, the next morning, I’m pleasantly surprised to find that a) I don’t sound like a complete drunken idiot and b) there are 20 comments waiting for me. In my book, comments are almost as good as beer.
Other nights, I’ll pour my little heart out into a post, and decree it the best thing I’ve written. Ever. And the next morning, I’m dismayed to find that either a) I do sound like a drunken idiot or b) there are exactly 0 folk(s) that had anything to say about it.
It makes me a little sad. But really, it shouldn’t. Because I know that even if they didn’t comment, Anonymous is reading.
And you never know who else is reading. Every once in a while, I’ll run into a colleague at work, or get a note from a friend who said they enjoyed something I wrote the other day. Interestingly enough, none of these people had ever left a comment. Heck, I didn’t even know they knew I had a blog. But something I had written in a semi-incoherent midnight blogging session either seemed funny enough, interesting enough, or absurd enough, that they took the time to mention it to me.
But back to the original Anonymous. If you’re out there, Anonymous, I’d like to personally thank you. You, my friend, are my favorite and first reader. If you happen to be reading this, please leave me a comment with how I can get in touch with you, because I have a six pack of beer with your name on it.
I write for me. But I also write for you, Anonymous. Because you’ll never know how much that first comment meant to me.