However, something in the last couple months threw me over that threshold from "happens to keep a blog" to "is a blogger." For some odd reason, this title is really uncomfortable for me. I do not want to be "a blogger." Perhaps it was taking that leap into hosting my own blog carnival. BLOG CARNIVAL?! Who even understands these terms in the real world? I do not want to have to wonder if someone in my real community has already read my blog. It puts me in a catch-22. Do I assume they have (which feels so arrogant)? Do I ask (which seems like self-promotion)? Do I assume they have not and risk boring them with redundant information (and will they be offended if parts of the conversation are verbatim from the blog post)? It is strange.
I feel utterly detached from this blog. I feel miles away from the reasons I even started keeping a blog. I feel like maybe I am done "attempting transparency" online. In some ways, any attempt at such a thing online was bound to fail. In some ways, I hope, I achieved it as best I could. However, what keeping this blog really did was to provide community for me at a time I was desperately without it. When I moved back "home" to Eugene, I returned to real community. The kind of community you can barbecue with, share real life with, and never exhaust the conversation. There was a large separation between me and this blog once I moved. It seemed a funny accessory that I just kept wearing out of habit, but not of love.
Now, I am ready for a different adventure. Of course, I do plan to still be learning (ancora imparo). I am approaching thirty years old next month, and I feel like I have more to learn than I ever have in my life. From what I can tell, that is a good thing. From what I have heard, that feeling will only increase. That is strangely encouraging, while it is also a little frustrating. I can still remember being in 6th grade and over-hearing my mother tell someone I was "11 going on 30." That diagnosis stuck with me. "Thirty" held the secrets of being undeniably grown-up, fully-mature. It also put me on a path (created only by myself and my 11-year-old conceptions of what maturity even meant) of trying to continue "being mature." I do not think this is a bad path. It is still the path I want to travel. However, now I am 29 going on 30. Now I am right where I am supposed to be. Soon, I will be 30, and on what will I be going then? No one has dared to prognosticate for me from here. Thirty is wide open to me. Life, moment by moment, is on what I am going. The same as you. The same as I have always been. Yet now I feel it more acutely. I feel its fragility, its beauty, its brevity, its frivolity and meaninglessness, and yet I feel its possibility. I feel possibilities that are not foreseeable 19 years on the horizon. Perhaps now I will be 30 going on 11. Perhaps I have much more to learn about childhood from watching my own children discover theirs.
I am ready to walk into my thirtieth year while still attempting transparency, but attempting it with the people with whom I am in true community. This blog will fall silent. In fact, I will even be making it private (for I cannot bring myself to simply delete it). I do not plan on posting here, so the privacy is not to hide anything. In the event that I change my mind, or life sends me different circumstances where I need blogging as a form of community, I might start up again. If you would like to be on the email list for when/if that happens, shoot me and email or leave me a comment with your email address.
I am not yet ready to close my seldom-posted-on writing blog, nor my food blog, so you might still find me there. I would also like to leave Facebook, but it is so darn convenient to get in touch with people there. I am undecided. I am also undecided about how much I will follow others' blogs, so if you share any major life updates I should know about, please let me know by email!
To my friends and family (many of whom are, sadly, not a part of our physical community here) - I imagine I will start some sort of family blog devoted solely to pictures and antics of the kids and our adventures. If you want to be emailed when I post/start that, let me know.
To everyone else - Thank you for being a very meaningful community to me here for as long as you have. I have treasured every interaction. You have meant a lot to me and helped me through more than you could know.
(seize the life)
[Blog scheduled to go private in a few weeks. My hope is to give time for occasional readers not to be taken completely by surprise]