Monday, May 13, 2013

Five Years of One Wild and Precious Life

Josie, this week

Today is the five year anniversary of this blog, and all week I have been thinking, I will write a post about this blog. Why? I don't know, why do I ever blog? This is what I keep trying to figure out.

I finally hit publish on my first post in the living room of the church parsonage on a sunny day in May. I had no idea what I was doing, only that the sun was shining.

I didn't know when I began what I hoped to happen with blogging. We still had dial-up internet. The only person I knew who blogged was Ruth, and hers was the only blog I read except maybe Dooce occasionally.

Five years. Geesh. It's like the 1800's of the internet.
Blogging has changed, life has changed ...

Annie, six months
I guess blogging has chronicled my motherhood journey in this way: I am always trying to figure out where to put it. Just like everything else in life.

It's like when I was a waitress, and I would pull out a huge giant tray, and carefully arrange four or six or ten platters of food, and then there was that one glass of lemonade someone needed and so I would rearrange all of the plates in order to perch the glass in the center before heaving it onto my shoulder to carry to the table. That tray is kind of like my life, and this blog is the glass of lemonade: one last detail I try to fit onto the tray. Not really a necessity, but nice when it can fit.

Maybe I blog because it is one small thing I can do for myself, a creative space that is just mine. It doesn't ask for things or require craft glue or peanut butter or clorox wipes. It's always here, just like I left it, and I can ignore it for days and that's okay too.

I have over these years wavered between deciding that blogging is stupid, and a waste of time, I am going to shut down the blog and leave the internet for good; and then deciding that I really should take this blogging thing more seriously.

There are blogs I envy sometimes, the more prolific or professional mom-blogs, the incredible amount of good blogging they are able to produce. How do they do it?

Eventually I learned where to put this, how to fit it in among the five or so plates I am balancing, and I find that it occupies a pretty small spot. But also that it's a sweet spot, I'm glad it here, like the dark chocolate I keep hidden on the top shelf.

Thanks to blogging I have made new friends, or have other friends who I know a lot better because of their blogs. I have been able to grieve with friends and rejoice with them along their own journeys, through their own words, and for this alone blogging is beautiful.

I write because I cannot speak, and I have felt a little more understood thanks to this blog.

There are posts I have published that I am glad to have written, and a lot that I would like to burn down.

Most of all I think I blog because it is a way- my way- of acknowledging the wild and precious in life.

It is a way to Cling to what is Good, and oh, in this world, that is the only thing to do- to cling; to look for the good, search for it, cleave to it, fixate on it, hold it to your chest for dear life. We need to cling to good.

Blogging is a way I have found to pay attention, a way to say Me Too, and thank-you, and life is wild and precious so what will you do with it? Blogging is one way, my way, to say that Life is a Miracle.
I see that the life of this place is always emerging beyond expectation or prediction or typicality, that it is unique, given to the world minute by minute, only once, never to be repeated. And this is when I see that this life is a miracle, absolutely worth having, absolutely worth saving. We are alive within mystery, by miracle.
-Wendell Berry, Life is a Miracle
And so I am thankful for this little space, however unpredictable and imperfect and incomplete, just like life.

Thanks for reading, whoever you are, even if you never comment or we have never met.

The next verse says that we are to "be devoted to one another in love." (Romans 12:10) It seems that understanding one another is a first step toward love, and the written word is a good step toward understanding. So, thanks.

And if you blog, thanks for blogging. Thanks for all of the authentic, imperfect and lovely blogs out there clinging to what is good. Your art is important, and needed.

And if you don't blog I hope you have your own space somewhere, your own creative enjoyment and your own way of expressing the miracle of life.


so in Christ we, though many, form one body, and each member belongs to all the others. We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your[a] faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead,[b] do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully. 

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves. 

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Romans 12:5-10,21


Ruth said...

Please don't ever stop blogging. I love your blog, and always get very happy when I see you have posted. Happy blog birthday and thank you for everything you write. It's always beautiful and honest and thought-provoking. Love you, Jess!

About Anna said...

I enjoy your blog too! Thanks for writing your thoughts down...I'm so often nodding in agreement to the sentences you write!