Monday, October 31, 2011
October 31, 2011 ~ Day 326
With November comes the holiday season ~ Thanksgiving... Christmas...
...my 36th birthday.
Unbelievably, there are just about six more weeks until this blog hits 365 days.
Of course, I've slacked a lot lately.
So I'll be working on the "lost" posts for a while after the official December 10, 2011 anniversary.
That is a lot of writing.
Many of my friends have asked me recently what I plan to do after I've completed all 365 days.
Will I keep on going with it?
Will the project change?
I'm not really sure yet.
What I do know is that it's time to look ahead into our future as a family, and devote myself to projects that will help contribute to our goals and dreams.
I started this blog because I was afraid to die.
2009 and 2010 were rough years for me, healthwise. I had three small children at home and my heart was filled with the worry of every mother in the world...
I didn't want to leave them prematurely. I wanted to teach them all of the crucial things about kindness and love, loyalty and devotion, determination and faith. I wanted to give them the gifts of my voice and experience, while I still could.
What I didn't expect was that in many ways, this blog actually played a large role in bringing good health back into my life.
Sure, my autoimmune stuff is still out there. I'm still working daily on making lifestyle and medicinal choices that will keep me thriving, stave off the chronic infections and their long-term toll.
The blog though, it gave me a chance to feel like *something* I was doing in my daily existence had permanence.
It will last. It will stand the test of time, even if my body does not.
I have shared so much of myself in these posts and it felt really good to open my heart and my life. As a shy person by nature, I've always forced myself to be social in situations where I'd honestly rather hide behind a book.
It's been so healthy for me to throw open the doors of our family - our successes and challenges - to the world.
Throughout this year I've made so many friends by sharing our stories, and deepened many of the friendships I already had. More than one person has confided in me that they never really felt like they knew me until they started reading my blog.
Connecting on a more substantive level with people that I already loved, and people that I've grown to love, during this year - it has made so much difference in my inner sense of health.
One of the worst parts of autoimmune challenges (anyone with an autoimmune condition can tell you) is that in many cases you don't look any different on the outside. You feel really lousy and face serious health problems while looking perfectly normal. There is no broken arm, bleeding wound or blistering rash all over your body to show people that you're having a hard time.
Autoimmunity also goes hand-in-hand a lot of times with depression. There's no signpost for that either. Depression can be truly debilitating but, again, there is no flashing neon advertisement above your head as you walk down the street saying "I have diabetes and I'm feeling really sad about it!"
Keeping this blog has made me feel truly connected to others, at times when otherwise I would have felt terribly alone.
Heaven knows... I sure don't have time as a mother to get together with ten, twenty, fifty of my friends in a single day and catch them up on our family news. I'm lucky if I can just chat with my 73 year old mother for ten minutes in the morning before my children climb all over me and demand that I get off of the telephone.
Whole days go by without me speaking in person with a single adult other than my husband.
On occasion, close friends of mine that follow the blog pretty regularly have confided that they appreciate reading about our "real" life as a family because they too have days when they feel completely alone and isolated. We learn from each other that we're NOT alone.
Our struggles may be different, but the love and hope we bring into trying to find solutions for our children, careers, etc. - those feelings and attempts are very similar.
As I look ahead to my next project, which may well be revitalizing the Tasty...and Gluten Free! blog that I began in 2008, I know that in some way I'll want to continue sharing our life as it unfolds.
I'm so grateful to have been born into the information age, at a time when social networks are exploding the way human beings have traditionally interacted.
As a sensitive, shy, emotive person who yearns to connect and actually wants to share the best (and worst) parts of myself with others - it has been a gift and an honor to explore the meaning of life in 365 days through this personal project.