They’re braver

A friend of mine sent me a link to a fellow widow’s blog this weekend and I had a wee peek around to see what she had to say. It’s not the first “Widow Blog” I’ve read, and it certainly won’t be the last, but it’s made me realise several things about how un-brave I am at times.

I can rant on and on about what drives me mad about [some] Widow Blogs – and I almost did until I deleted a couple of paragraphs – but today I want to talk about what makes me realise that I’m not as brave as other widows out there. And I suppose that bravery comparison extends beyond fellow widows. I mean, there are loads of bloggers out there who make me feel like a scaredy-cat.

When I started my first post-Paul blog, I did so with a specific aim to blog about my grief. And that really helped, but I wasn’t brave enough to really put my name to it. I wasn’t brave enough to share the link (or posts) with my friends and family. I mean, I shared it with a couple of them, but I was very guarded about it. And, I suppose I was guarded about what I wrote. Yes, it was a bit raw at times, but I wasn’t able to share all of my thoughts, feelings, and emotions because I was afraid of offending people, but also because I was afraid to admit some of those things personally.

With Just Frances, I’ve actively shared the link with family and friends, and that means that I’m even more guarded about what I share. In some cases, I’m not sharing my anger. Other times, I’m not sharing my fears. Sometimes, I don’t share my adventures, because I don’t think it’s fair to blog about friends who aren’t really into the whole online life thing. And then there are the times when I don’t share anything.

But I read some of these blogs and I am amazed at how brave the writers’ are. They share the most intimate details of their lives not only with strangers but with their family and friends. (I know that sounds backwards, but the anonymity that blogging allows means some people share with the ethers without the knowledge of their “real” world.) These bloggers talk about depression and suicidal thoughts and anger and fights with friends and dating and everything in between. But not just in passing, vague terms – they go into details. They spill out this raw emotion for all to see.

And that, Dear Reader, is oh-so brave.

I don’t know how many times I’ve written down such raw emotion only to delete it before it I even open up my blog’s content management system. I’m just afraid to share some things. I’m afraid of what others will think. I’m afraid of being judged but those who don’t understand. I’m afraid that sharing some things might force me to actually face them.

I know I share. And I know that some people think I share too much. But I guess that I’m forever aware that I don’t share everything. I don’t even share most things. And when there’s not a real person next to me on the couch to share things with from time to time, it can seem a bit crowded in my mind.

So, yeah. Sometimes, I feel like a great big scaredy-cat when it comes to sharing things on my blog. But, then, I don’t suppose I’ve ever shared everything with anyone. (I shared 99.9% of everything with Paul. I still do, but it’s just not the same.)

I don’t really know what the point of this post is, other than to say I feel like an inadequate blogger at times. But I guess that’s OK.

As for that rant about Widow Blogs, maybe I’ll bore you with that in a day or two. (I know, you’re totally on the edge of your seat waiting for that post!)

6 Replies to “They’re braver”

  1. i’m a great believer in blogging for therapy if that’s the way you process the slings and arrows of life. it’s brave to put yourself out there but no less brave to keep going with life whatever.
    blogging about life in general has helped me process my way through a lot of crap and i feel stronger/more in touch with myself for it.
    yes, it’s freaky having IRL friends mention they read the last post, or personally email words of encouragement (it’s happened). it’s likewise freaky when people tell me not to post because i offend others. it certainly makes me think before Publish, but on the other hand, no one is forced to read it and i’ve had some amazing conversations / built up my network as a result.
    continue being brave, Frances!

    1. I really am a believer in journal therapy. I tend to keep paper journals, too, but even there I’m censoring myself for fear of what others will think when I’m gone. (Maybe a ‘real’ therapy session is in order to find out why I care so much!)
      As I start to think about the possibility of considering dating, I’ve realised that I don’t think I’d want to share my blog with a guy until we’ve gotten to know each other a bit–just because of that freaky thing of them knowing things that I haven’t told them. It is, as you say, freaky enough when friends mention things!

      1. i’ve been so lucky to have Sandy, an excellent therapist, in my life for the last year. i’ve made great strides in untangling my knots (i nearly typed ‘nots’ there which i think is quite a telling slip!).
        as for the dating – i wouldn’t share my life with anyone at first, not till i got to know them enough to feel comfortable. i think i’d mention my blogging but not give a link – it is a part of me but not something i force on others (despite some opinions to the contrary out there).
        as for courage, a new online friend just blogged this week about meeting her daughter for the first time in over 30 years – now that’s a brave step, but she delayed until she felt ready to tell all.
        i think that the more you know yourself, the more you know when you are ready, and it’s not something anyone else can know for you (and that’s a lot of repetition in there!)

  2. To quote Jesus of the CopyMat:
    “That’s how you become great man. Hang your balls out there.”

  3. I would have to agree with the comment above: “i think that the more you know yourself, the more you know when you are ready, and it’s not something anyone else can know for you (and that’s a lot of repetition in there!)”
    I think this is part of why you don’t share the things you “fear” because it’s just not time for you yet… I believe that you are in a state of rediscovering yourself and maybe we never stop that process??!! I also think you should share whatever you want or are ready to without fear of what others may think or be offended by! Like what was earlier they don’t HAVE to read it & since we are adults it no longer matters what others think(not to say that others opinions aren’t appreciated) but it only matters how we feel about ourselves in this content anyway 🙂

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