Okay, so maybe blogging didn’t literally save my life. It has however been a crucial part of my healing journey this past year.
I recently passed my first anniversary (or blogiversary) on The Lyme Road. When I began the blog, I intended on a place where I could process my feelings and work through the pain and difficulty of a prolonged, gloomy season in my life. I hoped that by writing bits and pieces of my story, I could boost my spirits. I wanted to let go of the past and embrace the possibilities of my future.
My intention was to inspire myself to keep believing that I could live joyfully while enduring a chronic illness. On October 26th, 2013, I pressed “Publish” for my first post. Much to my surprise, friends, family and strangers read the post. Even my very busy doctor took a moment out of his day to view it and write a comment!
I never really considered others might be interested in the story I had to tell. I didn’t imagine people would actually be following my progress! I am honored that my story has served as encouragement to others. I am so grateful to all of you who have continued to read my posts, comment on them, email and message me!
Blogging has been an amazing platform to help me cope and aid in the healing process.
8 Ways Blogging has Been Crucial to My Healing Journey :
1. It boosted my self-esteem.
I had lost a lot of my life to illness. My confidence had been badly shaken. Blogging helped me realize that I still had gifts and talents to share with the world that weren’t dependent on whether I was well. I accomplished a post if I just kept working a little at a time.
2. It gave writing back to me.
When I was a child, I used to spend hours in my room writing story after story with abandon. In growing up, getting older and getting a real job, I lost that passion. Years of text books, heavy with medical and therapy jargon, had stifled my creativity. Even though I may only ever make enough money for a monthly trip to Chipotle, blogging has allowed me an avenue where I can explore my creative side. It feels so good be to writing again!
3. It’s provided me with free therapy.
I held on tightly to painful memories not knowing how to safely release them. Through the power of words, I was able to cry and grieve my heart’s most distressing moments. The result has been a profound understanding that although there is difficulty in life, hope can fill me. That’s ultimately what I want for myself–a life filled with hope.
4. It gave me a social life again.
I do my blogging at home while sitting on the couch or lying in bed. I could not have guessed that I would meet such a kind, helpful group of people online. I am lucky enough to have developed real friendships with several of these people. I know that as I connect and network with other bloggers, I will continue to meet some wonderful people.
5. It allowed me to take risks.
I have always loved to take a risk, learn a new skill or try something different. For years, I had to extinguish that desire and make the pursuit of healing my number one priority. I was too weak, too sick and too tired to dream of embarking on an adventure. Blogging has help me to find courage to try something new again.
Shortly after I began writing, I guest posted on a few other blogs. Then, I decided to take a chance and submit a few posts to Mind Body Green, a huge health and wellness website…
6. And blogging showed me that I still have a lot to learn.
The first post I sent to Mind Body Green was not the easily sharable format they use on their website. My second post to them sounded like I was trying to sell something. I realized I needed to take time to learn and develop a writing style that is unique to me.
I have time to make mistakes, learn from them and take more risks.
7. It taught me that support can come from unexpected places.
Of course, I expected that my family and a few close friends would read my blog. What I did not expect however, is that support, empathy and encouraging words would come from other people’s mothers, old high school classmates, ex-colleagues and strangers from around the world! It truly has been a blessing to me and a source of great comfort.
8. It has helped me to see I have a choice.
I have a choice to not let my heart be in turmoil over my current circumstances. I can daily choose to renew my thinking by focusing on good, pure and lovely things. In almost every post I write, I am attempting to illustrate this simple equation:
Focusing on the good equals more peace in my life.
Focusing on the bad equals more anxiety and confusion.
Such a simple formula!