Sunday, November 26, 2006

100 Posts

Blogger tells me that this is my 100th post. Time to celebrate. And to be surprised. Because, to be honest, I started this blog one morning completely on impulse, with no particular commitment to even a second post. So 100 posts seems like a lot, and certainly more than I would have expected.

I have been wondering lately if I should wind up this blog because it does take some time away from my family and from other priorities. And there are practical issues. Ever since the Little Dude dropped his morning sleep a few weeks ago, it is very difficult to get the kind of uninterrupted time that posting requires. And I have a slight RSI problem from being on the computer so much at work, which blogging doesn't much help.

But I find that I am curiously reluctant to quit. Because the fact is that blogging is bringing me a lot of benefits that I am reluctant to give up.

Firstly, the venting. Venting is good. I have bitten my tongue and held back on more than one occasion, in the knowledge that I can safely vent my feelings here. I can let off steam here when things are going badly, and there are essentially no real consequences - no fed up partner, no disgruntled workmates, no reputation as a depressing whinger in the "real world" (a reputation as a depressing whinger on the net doesn't have the same sting!). Just largely sympathetic friends. Anyone who gets fed up with listening to my whining can just click on to someone more interesting.

Secondly, and increasingly importantly, I get a sense of community here. Some of the people I now feel close to - well, I don't actually know their names. I don't know what they look like. I'm hazy on exactly what they do professionally. In that sense, I don't know them at all. And yet, I know a surprising amount about their marriages, their children, their feelings, and how they feel about their lives. I feel like I know them, even though I don't actually know much about them. And they are people who are well worth getting to know.

But I think, most of all, blogging is leading me to pay attention to my own life in a way that I haven't before. Because I need to find something to blog about, I notice my life more. I record important moments, moments that I want to remember later, and I ask myself what they mean. I think the issues through more systematically. Until I started blogging, to be honest, I found my own life kind of boring. I thought I needed a hobby or something external to make it more interesting. It would never have occurred to me that paying more attention to my life would make it more interesting to me. And it would certainly never have occured to me that other people might find my life interesting enough to have opinions on it.

Because of blogging, I really notice my own emotions a lot more and feel them more strongly. Readers of this blog might be surprised to learn that in "real life" I can be a little repressed emotionally - very work oriented and stiff upper lip. People have told me sometimes that they find me a very loyal friend, very cool under pressure and reliable in a crisis, but a little unemotional, analytical to the point of seeming a little callous. I think growing up in a disturbing family can have that effect. People with backgrounds like me - we value stability, order, control. The alternative feels too much like a return to a childhood we were anxious to escape.

And paying attention to my emotions makes me view them a little differently - less as a threat, and more as a kind of signal that I need to listen to. I start to feel pretty silly, blogging repeatedly about the same old issues, if I'm not doing anything about those issues. Blogging is making me ask myself if this is how I want to be.

I have made some changes to my life that I do not think would have happened if I wasn't blogging. I think, without this blog, I wouldn't have implemented my resolutions - and then I wouldn't be enjoying the benefits of my improved diet and fitness or managed to save some money while still paying down old debt. I wouldn't have experienced a somewhat improved sex life. And I do not think I would be enjoying my go slow, either.

So, I have decided to keep blogging - at least for now.

100 posts. I wonder how many more there will be?


Blogger Lickety Split said...

Don't go!

The blog serves a purpose in your life.

In my view there is a beauty in the anonymity of the blog. You can be honest. Brutally honest. With yourself and others.

I think the blog centers me emotionally. Just my two cents.

9:07 PM  
Blogger Rob said...

"100 posts. I wonder how many more there will be?"

To which I reply: as many and as long as you seek out and receive the friendship of others here on the net. Friends, no matter of what kind - in real life or here - are well worth keeping. So by all means please keep on blogging. Just do so with balance and with the sense that it is a pleasure not a duty, to do so as your time and mood should dictate. Happy 100th Emily. Looking forward to many more.

3:29 AM  
Blogger kissmekate said...

Congrats on the 100th post!

After my short spell away from blogging I have to say it is very therapeutic. It does help to sort things out in your head. Right now I can't really blog as my head is too screwed up, but I am hanging for the day that I can get some of this crap in my head out on my blog!

And I second the community feel and support. It really is helpful at times.

3:48 AM  
Blogger Satan said...

Well hooray for blogs! I'm glad all the benefits that you mentioned are keeping you around - especially what you said about paying more attention to your feelings, as though they aren't something to be handled or ignored but rather a helpful tool for life.

You better not go far, it's such a pain to adjust my blogroll . . :P

4:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah Emily, keep going... as long as it doesn't become a chore.

I think blogging serves all the good purposes of journal keeping, but it allows total anonymity and no worries of someone finding your paper journal and reading it. This allows you to be totally honest about yourself and others. And then having comments, well that just takes blogging into 'journal 2.0' territory in my opinion.

And that's why I think it becomes so addictive.

Happy 100P :-)

4:26 AM  
Blogger aphron said...

Congrats on the posts.

Everyone has slow periods in their blog.

6:04 AM  
Blogger for a different kind of girl said...

Congratulations on 100 posts! I'm only a few months into mine, and there are days I've found myself pondering more about what in the world I could write about more than things I really should be addressing in life!

Very much love your reasonings for doing this! In many ways, they echo my own. Plus, I had forgotten that it can be fun for me to write again purely to write.

Having just discovered you not long ago, I'm hoping you'll have many more posts!

6:06 AM  
Blogger Desmond Jones said...

Congratulations, Emily!

I, for one, am glad to have made your (anonymous) acquaintance via blogworld, whether you continue blogging past tomorrow or not.

I kept a 'paper-and-pen' journal for 25 years before I started blogging, and I echo your sentiments about it helping to focus your thoughts.

I have really enjoyed the 'sense of community' that exists in blog-space, the 'relationships' that form as we read and comment on each other's blogs. When I took a break from blogging this past summer, that was what I missed the most.

Like you, I really don't know how long I'll keep blogging; blogging and 'real life' compete for my time and 'brain-space' more than I wish they did, and I expect that at some point, blogging will become a luxury I can't continue to afford.

For now, though, I'm enjoying it immensely, and you, and your blog, are one of the reasons why. . .

6:43 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Congrats on the 100th post and here's to hoping there will be many more to come.

11:04 AM  
Blogger FTN said...

100 posts. Congratulations. Everyone does seem use the word "therapeutic" to describe blogging, don't they?

For this 100 post celebration... Will there be cake?

1:28 PM  
Blogger C-Marie said...

I hope there are many many more posts!!
(it's very theraputic)


3:01 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Ah, FTN, I would have thought you'd had enough cake at the Great ADKOG's Pink Birthday Cake Licking Marathon... are you telling me that eating cake just creates an appetite for more cake? :-)

3:26 PM  
Blogger LePhare said...

100 post! Is there a prize? Blogging has opened my eyes to a whole different world.......... and there's some good and interesting people out there.

I'm a 24/7 carer and I've found it's given me a form of escapism which I can use for me.

5:17 PM  
Anonymous Rosie said...

It's good to know you will continue blogging. As I read what you wrote it struck me how similar we are, except even after 2 years I can't bring myself to write a blog. Yet I consider myself a member of the blogging community. You are always a thought provoking read.

6:35 PM  
Blogger Confused Husband said...

Happy 100 posts! Here's to a hundred more.

I'll echo what Satan said too. It's a pion to change the ol' blogroll.

7:16 PM  
Blogger Ali said...

I'm so glad! Because, to be honest, I feel like I know you too. And I would really, actually, honestly miss you.

9:31 PM  

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