Saturday, January 31, 2009

Becoming Oneself At Thirty-nine

I am not sure that this is going to be witty, funny, and sarcastic enough for my posse, so you better read quickly, since I give them complete leave to delete it for it's lack of punch. Quicker now! Haven't you ever heard of speed reading? Email me and I'll have my husband send you the link. Hey, it's not my fault, I am typing this just as fast as I can! I bet I am typing faster than you are reading! UH HUH!
Okay, friends, I have a question. Does anyone else out there find it easier to be themself in cyber space than on planet earth? Because I do. I reread my blog post and comments and say to myself "dang, that's me!" and am always surprised. See, believe it or not, on planet earth, I find it hard to open up to people. I have had friends who knew me for years say to me, "Helen you and I never laughed like this before, and in the last few months, we do every time we say hi! What happened?" I also have had old friends say to me "Helen, what happened, you used to be so sweet?". Even the people I teach CCD (Sunday school) with, whom I have gone to Church with for a few years point blank tell me I used to be aloof, and now I am joking around like an entirely different person.
How did that happen? Well, I can't speak for other bloggers, but I think my comfort in cyber space started because I began like I was talking to myself. I figured I know me, so it would be okay. (I also did not put my last name out there for a while, and still guard it almost as carefully as Nick the Geek does his, except you can find mine easier. Email buddies, you have it right there in my email address. Yep. Didn't I disguise it cleverly? Plus, I can google myself and get my blog, so I could use a few lessons from Nick the Geek if he cares to stop over....)
I did get tired of talking to myself, and eventually started babbling. When did I get my first commenter so that I was no longer talking to myself? Let's May a woman (I think) commented about my chain letter post (I was supposed to die if I didn't send it in seven days, and since I have no desire to curse others so I can live, I was preparing my blog for my demise. BTW I did not die. Just so you know). I gave her a shout out, and she never came back. Thankfully, Katdish commented the next day, and the rest will be written in The History of Bloggerdom Volume I.
Since then, I have found myself responding candidly to issues that I would second guess talking about at a party with family members. Weird, huh? I think blogging has helped me grow in that I realize if I could honestly answer the question "Are People Inherently Prejudice" (I am going to make you work for it by searching prejudice on Katdish's and my blogs. Good things don't come easy....) and people in cyber space would still know and love me, I don't have to hide my thoughts from my aunt and cousins (Bob and mom know everything I think and feel....sometimes I tend to mutter). These "people in cyber space" have since become friends that I have grown t know and love quickly.
Sherri writes a lot about becoming transparent. I suppose that I have not been so on planet earth because I was afraid that people wouldn't like me. I didn't realize except by getting to know them that becoming transparent, or at least more so, gives people an opportunity to like me, too. Amazing!

The Sally Field version would not embed for me, so it was either this, or M.W. Smith's "Friends Are Friends Forever". Much as I personally like that song, your welcome.


Annie K said...

Helen, you are brilliant and funny and deep and that's why we all love you. ;)

I'm more guarded on my blog because I know my ex's wife reads it religiously. Therefore, I've tried to keep the relationship issue between my daughter and her dad pretty lo-key. I'm trying to mend fences..not tear the rest down.

This morning, I'm writing a post but won't post it until I can talk to my daughter (who is on a school bus heading to a town 5 hours from here). Last night she received texts from a girl...who was at a party that was busted...but her friends mom bailed her out and she wanted Kenz to come pick her up so she could get her car. Now, I saw all of the texts and I'm pissed because this parent is really stupid for being a friend to these girls instead of an authority figure. I'm not going to use names in my post, but I am going to pretty much, point blank tell parents (namely this gal - who I know because she is a parent of a volleyball player) to start parenting their kids and how big of a mistake they're making by allowing this kind of thing to happen. (Whoa...that was basically the post.). These kids have a lot of potential...but they've got parents who are oblivious or living vicariously through their kids.

Ok, I'll stop ranting on your post - which was very well written by the way!

sherri said...

Helen, I Don't like you...I WUV YOU!!!!

ANd yes, it's much easier to type our real emotions and thoughts to invisible people.

Many from my hometown and church read my blog and they never comment online, but I'll see them out and they're like, "Hey, did Big Al get the Harley?" and I think, wow, these people probably know WAY too much about me.

But you know what? WHo cares?

ANd no, I don't share EVERYTHING, believe it or not, and I do make an effort NOT to offend people with other thoughts, ideas, etc.,if I can help it , while still being ME. And I am a work in progress on the transparancy thing. I'll hold back on somethings about myself if I think it would offend someone. (ANd for the record, I commonly use the words, Crap, fart, and such at home , but not so much on my site because I know some are offended by those silly little words, and would not listen to anything else I had to say. The same on some other "debatable" issues. I see that more as a social skill. But I can make a ripple when needed, don't let my sweet ways fool ya'! I AM A REDHEAD! I can stand up and be heard when the spirit moves me!

I have always talked ALOT, and I try to contain cause I know it can get annoying but I have so many thoughts, and emotions, and ideas and opinions that I want to share and I have found a way to do just that. If people don't want to listen they can just turn the blog channel.

ALong time ago, Annie commented that if we all were members of the same church, we would not have gravitated to each other so easily.
But this way, in sharing so much of who we are, we have taken the time to get to know the WHOLE person, and I for one, find people to be fascinating! All kinds of people, and I find my self wanting to know more and more people, and to know more and more about the people I've already met!

SO, to make a long story even longer, and to claim the prize for longest blog comment,

I LOVE YOU GUYS! All of you!
And, not to be overly dramatic here, but, in the words of Jerry McGuire...

You . complete. me.

(Well, really, Big Al does, but you guys come awfully close!)

Helen said...

In the spirit of becoming more transparent, I ought to admit to being way open with Bob's family. His cousin Sue makes the best sangria's, and after a couple of those, you could ask me anything and I will tell you everything! We are going there today for a birthday party. Can you see the cyber sparks in my eyes?

sherri said...

Would this work on those terrorists at Guantanomo?

Email the president with her recipe!

It could save us all!

sherri said...

Please, Helen, when you return and while you're still "feelin' it", come back online. I have some questions I would like to ask you...


Annie K said...

Yeah, it would be like Sangria Truth or Dare!

Good idea Sherri!

Ryan B said...

I have gotten a lot of comments from people I know saying that I have gotten funnier. I don't know if that's true. I don't think that I am very funny. I just say whatever comes to mind. I only laugh when reading other people's funny stuff. I'm bored out of my mind when I read my posts.

Annie K said...

Ryan B, we have all just learned to laugh at ourselves. It comes with age. And, I know for a fact that most of us tend to crack ourselves up - even when others don't think we're funny. Again...age

Regular reader, first time commentor said...

What a great post, Helen! You've got to be one of my favorites!

I've been following you ladies around for a few months now, and I just gotta say, it seems, once again, that the radiant, life giving sun from which all of your bloggity radiance shines is that beautiful, funny and eloquent lady you call "katdish".


Helen said...

That snort sounded vaguely familiar. BTW No sangrias today. I am not "feelin it". You can still ask whatever you want, though.