I received this email the other day that kind of broke my heart. If you notice, it's been a few days since I posted; I have been thinking over what this person said and kind of pondering what to do about it. The email came from an anonymous reader and yes, I copy and pasted their email address into facebook's search bar to try and find them... I'm a creeper like that, but they weren't on facebook. So I'm left with this anonymous email that tore me up.
I wasn't quite sure if I should share anything about it, but I write, that's what I do, and so many of you have become trusted friends and I figure what are friends for if not to share burdens and encourage one another?
This email talked about my heart and my writing. "Once upon a time," it said, "I thought yo u had something to say and a poetic skill to say it beautifully. Slowly, your words became redundant, you began to mimic yourself and others on the Internet, you had nothing new to say and your style just became dull."
So right about here my eyes filled with tears. I was seriously at a loss and had no idea why someone would tell me this. They continued to list blogs of people who had the same style or message as me but were "much better writers and storytellers." Through my tears I chuckled because a few of the people they mentioned are my friends.
The ending was my favorite. "I am not telling you this to upset you but to help you. You seem to spend a lot of time writing and editing photos for your blog. Maybe you hope to write a book someday or just to gain a huge following. I hope in telling you these things you will see that you are wasting yours and your family's time. You always write about living each moment and relishing your children's childhoods. You should take your advice and not spend so much time on this pursuit but spend the time on your family and getting right with God. Humbly, an anonymous reader"
So my friends, I have been quietly, prayerfully pondering this email. I just am not sure what to do with it. My first thought is, am I really wasting time? This is my one life, am I throwing it away on empty pursuits? Then I think about God, about who He has made me. Ever since I was a child, I wrote. I wrote letters, stories, articles, journals. I never knew what to say to people so I wrote my thoughts to them instead. When I have taken breaks from writing I have been filled with anxiety and overwhelmed by my thoughts and emotions. God made me a person who writes. And write I must.
Then comes questioning the blog. I must write, but must I write for an audience? I could just keep it all to myself. Why do I blog anyway? It's not to write a book or gain a huge following, although those things would probably be nice if they happened. I have been writing books for years anyway, they have just never been published, you know? I started my blog because I was writing anyway and I thought I could share it and maybe, just maybe, it would encourage someone. And I know that it has, I receive those positive emails too.
It's just that negativity doesn't sit well with me. When someone thinks poorly of me it consumes my heart and my mind. I know it shouldn't, I know I should just let it roll off of me, but I can't. It hurts. It aches. I want people to like me. And someone doesn't. And it just makes me want to quit.
So now I have come to the end of what I have to say. I'm still not sure why I told you guys this. And please don't butter me up, I'm not fishing... I just need a friend.