In recent weeks I've been posting more on Facebook, because there's been a lot more going on in our lives and there's actually something TO post, and I've probably posted it to FB rather than here because FB is like a highway and people will stop and stare no matter what's on the side of the road. I'm not self-indulgent enough to think that people are actually reading my stuff because they "choose" to per se, it's just that well, that highway analogy pretty much says it all, my stuff is there and it apparently doesn't take any effort for people in my stream to read it, contrasted to the intentional effort it takes to go to some one's blog or website. So anyway, people ARE reading my posts, which in and of itself is a good thing because, well who doesn't WANT attention? I won't sit here and pretend that I don't write for an audience. I do. I also write to get stuff out of my head (it's already plenty crowded there with all the other conversations and voices) and I write because it just feels GREAT. I just LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the feeling of putting words to my thoughts and feelings and experiences, and to that end, I don't care if anyone ever reads any of it.
But at least one person is reading the posts and at least one person (maybe that same person) has their panties in a wad and that's why this post is here. I'm starting to get more comments, which is cool, especially the positive comments! But of course, that's not what this entry is about, this is about the negative comments which are trickling in. Apparently some are reading my entries and are seeing things that are not there, like negative comparisons of where we used to live (in the second largest city in U.S.) to where we are now (NOT a big city), with the "where we are now" place not faring so well.
First and foremost, thanks for reading my stuff!! I'm just happy that one person has read ONE thing I've written (aside from my husband who also faithfully listened to me every morning during drive-time....he's a good guy). That being said, it's no where near the truth that I have in any way cast a negative light on our current town, which I've have named Our Town in my posts. I'll get back to that point in a minute, but I want to back up and explain some basic foundational writing tools I use. It's very common to compare and contrast one thing to another. It makes thing more "real" for the reader, more relate able and a writer can do that without disparaging or insulting one thing or the other, and I think I've done a pretty good job of that. Are there differences between where we are now from the ginormous city from which we just moved? Of course!! Does that mean that I hate this place? NO, it means it's DIFFERENT. I have pointed out just a few of the differences, like the lack of Yogurtlands and the fact that I should just prepare myself for missing Indian restaurants and take-out food because there isn't a real big Indian population here. Does that mean that I think less of where we are now? No, it means I'm "noticing". That's what writers do. They notice stuff and write it down, not totally unlike a painter who paints what he sees in front of him. And because I really love to write, get this next point because it's important: I'm writing down the differences. If I wanted to complain about anything, believe me, I've got the words within me to do it. I'm NOT complaining about our new town because, and here's another really important point: I have NOTHING TO COMPLAIN ABOUT. I am truly happy to be here, and that's probably because I'm truly happy to be ANYWHERE. It's a heart-set. A few years back before most of my life passed me by, I decided to jump on the Grown Up Train and be content no matter what my circumstances are; wealthy or poor, tall or short, living in a mansion or not, living at the beach or in the desert. Since doing that (and making the daily choice to stay on that train) my life has busted out with more joy, more contentment and get this, more PEACE. Yay for me! You can join me on that train anytime you like, there's plenty of room!
Do I miss some things from living in a big city? Of course!! And it just so happened that our exact location in that large city was pretty smokin' sweet: three miles from the beach, a bevy of friends within the disability community, a church that offered sign language interpretation, a social group for the kids where they were VALUED, included and LOVED for the awesome individuals that they are, and beautiful homes in which we lived and beautiful aesthetics surrounded us wherever we went. And last but definitely not least (I'm only listing this last because I won't make it through this sentence without a box of Kleenex), quite possibly the best "baby sitter" or child care provider (whatever you want to call it) I could EVER ask for. She was in our lives for over two years and now we're out here without her. I feel like I'm on a ledge of a skyscraper all alone. (oh great, here come the flaming hot tears down my cheeks). It's been a month since we left and it still feels like a gorilla is sitting on my chest whenever I think of her. She IS all that and more. I feel like I got punched in the gut whenever I think of how we're without her, how our kids are without her love and laughter and joy. Are there things I miss? Oh ya, and missing things like Miss Becky will never go away (but I am hoping to be able to talk to her on the phone at some point without blubbering), but it's NORMAL to miss things when you leave something or someone important. The fact that you do miss means that you have the capacity to make connections to people and experiences within your environment, which is a GOOD human quality. Please don't mistake my references for missing some thing or some one as "hate speech" for our current location.
Another writing tool I employ is humor. I like to point out the ridiculous, the absurd, the nonsensical and the inane. Many times, I'm pointing that stuff out in my own life, my own perceptions and thought patterns. Other times I'm opening my eyes and just documenting what I'm seeing around me, like the fact that our new town has a North Avenue which runs east and west and a West Street which runs north and south. I pointed that out recently, but does that mean that I'm making fun of our new town? NO, it means that I'm pointing out that it can be confusing!! In our previous home I pointed out the proliferation of botox clinics and medi-spas. Does that mean that I think that every person in LaLaLand was pumped full of bovine botulism and were all phony and fake? NO, it means I was merely pointing out that there was enough botox for every man, woman and child on the planet, located in one city, which is of course absurd and hilarious, and tragically funny all at the same time. There is a cavernous difference between pointing out the funny things in life and being mean spirited and derisive. I will always strive to stay in the camp of the former.
Thank you for staying awake long enough to read this.....or for employing the use of a 5 Hour energy drink in order to do so! Life is FAR too short and precious to not laugh, and to not have fun!! Have a GREAT DAY!!