Tuesday, November 8, 2011


This blog started at the suggestion of my sister, Ashley, and her husband, Ben. Maybe they saw some inner-angst that needed to be let out. Maybe they thought I'd enjoy writing. Maybe blogging was all the rage among their friends and it just seemed natural. For whatever reason, in August of 2007 I began writing here.

Mostly, I started writing to keep friends and family in the loop about my travels to Cambodia. But after my year was over, I kept writing because I couldn't imagine not doing so. I had connected with too many people, shared too many stories, and enjoyed the process too much to stop. Now, 499 blogs later, I write to practice/improve my writing. I write to connect with other people. I write to be held accountable to where I've been and where I'm going. I write to tell an honest story.

Recently, my honest story goes something like this:
-Twenty-four years old
-In a relationship with a wonderful man
-Lovingly supported by family and friends
-A teensy bit afraid of growing up
-Often doubting myself and my worth
-Completing my student-teaching
-Five weeks to graduation
-Can't. Hardly. Wait.

This honest story from blog #500 is different than the story from the girl who wrote blog #1.

My first blog was written from Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I had been there less than 24 hours and was writing about the journey around the world and my first impressions of my new "home." A line from the first paragraph in the first blog is this: "It's true. I am here. I can't go back now."

Sitting in the same body four years later, I know that's just not true. Now, I would argue with her:
Yes, you can go back.
Yes, you have decisions.
No, it wouldn't be failure.
No, most people wouldn't look down on you.
Yes, you can give yourself a break.
Please, give yourself permission to just be.

Girl from blog #1 didn't know that yet. She was stuck on pride and living for the imaginary audience in her head that would judge her if she stepped out of line. She probably wouldn't listen to me now anyway. This why I'm proud of the girl writing blog #500.

Because if it took 500 random, sloppy blog-postings to get me from there to here, than it was well worth it. Because who I was then is not who I am now. And I'm okay with that. I'm not only proud of the progress, I'm proud of the 19 year-old girl who stuck it out.

Her writing wasn't stellar and her rationale was lacking. But showing up deserves credit, because on some days, that's the best we can do. And that's always enough.


Carley Brown said...

I have this book my friend got me with simple pictures and simple descriptions, the book is called 'be happy' and on a page there is just a cute cartoon drawing of a man, below it, it says 'show up'. I agree, when you show up to life everyday, and breathe, and figure it out day by day, and sometimes even hour by hour. You progress. I'm glad, I too continue to 'show up' to life. I liked your post very much and I have been blessed by all that you've written since I've been following.