Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Challenge

One of the reasons I love my boyfriend is that he challenges me. Jim read my last entry and wanted me to clarify what an "expression of an eating disorder" entailed. I replied that I meant a thought or action that was directly linked to pathology, like calorie restriction, binging and purging and over-exercising. The conversation progressed - he asked why the post was so long. I told him I liked sorting my thoughts out in the blog.

"Why?" he said. "Why a public forum?"

Um. Well. Why do I blog?

I kept a journal all through middle school and high school. Those raggedy notebooks weremy thought-sorting space, where I talked about things I didn't fully understand and sure as hell didn't want to tell anyone else. If I read my journal from senior year, it's like a roadmap to anorexia.

I started this whole thing, ironically, at Jim's urging. His short-lived (but highly enjoyable) blog apparently needed company. And here I am, still clattering away almost a year later.

"Are you an exhibitionist?" he asked (oh baby, you wish).

Well, I'm not posting nekkid pics (be grateful, I'm very Irish), but in a way I do enjoy revealing myself. I like to see that people have read my blog. I enjoy getting comments and feedback. That, I suppose, is selfish. But I'm not forcing anyone to read - y'all do that by your own free will.

But there's another reason. I was astounded - astounded - by the community I found. I have read some incredible stories. You guys have shared experiences that have broken my heart, inspired me and helped me. And I hope, I really really hope, that my stories and experiences and silly musings have, in some way, helped at least a couple of my readers.

So yes, I admit a good portion of my bloggage is selfish. I like it (obvs, otherwise I wouldn't do it). But I hope it serves another purpose as well.

7 comments:

Carrie Arnold said...

It can't be totally selfish- I mean, I enjoy reading what you have to say. As a writer and avid journaler, I am very aware of the differences between public and private writing, not the least of which is my usage of four-letter words! But part of what's nice about the public aspect is the feedback, encouragement, and even disagreements.

I agree about the community we've all stumbled upon: it's probably the best part.

Lissy said...

what is selfish? that word has a negative overtone. writing a blog is writing a blog.

it's so great, isn't it, to write something and know that people around the country will understand and care? and connect. and maybe find a nugget for themselves.

most folks in my world have NO concept of eating issues of any kind. i was so much lonelier before i joined this blogging world.

if you get something out of it, does it matter the motivation?

i love your blog

Sam said...

Being selfish is not always a negative thing. I think that blogging is a positive form of selfishness.
Your stories help us just as much as other's stories help you. It's a great community! Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us.

Kristina said...

I struggle with the "why blog" question, rhetorical or not, but as others have said, it is okay to be selfish and to reflect upon one's life. Personally, I'm new at blogging and new to your blog, but I enjoy reading about your experiences. Like Carrie, the community that I have found is funny, empathetic and often provocative.

Gaining Back My Life said...

I can understand why you see it as selfish - I often feel the same way b/c I adore comments and the discussion that ensues following a post.

But I have learned that it's not really selfish at all; my blog has led me to others and I believe I am recovering so much quicker due to the support from the blogging community.

I love reading your blog, too ;)

Tiptoe said...

I've asked myself this question as well but more really whether it keeps me in the disorder than anything else.

I agree that finding the people and communities here has been such a worthwhile experience. To know other struggle with the same things as you or ask the same silly questions you do is very comforting.

I've always liked your blog for much of its wittiness and various topics. So my vote about blogging is that if it helps you, then continue on.

Just Eat It! said...

I consider blogging the least selfish manner of expression there is on the internet. It is nowhere near where Twitter is on the self-importance scale. I enjoy reading your blog a lot, and other people do, too, so that can't be selfish.

I think a lot of my own blogging is to remind myself that I'm not alone in recovery. There are so many of those terrible proana things out there, that it is comforting to find people in recovery.