I have social issues.
I’m not telling you, the TMU audience, what would otherwise be posted on my personal blog just for the heck of it; I’m telling you this because I know that I am not the only one and that we can struggle through this together.
My life has been comprised of people coming and going; most didn’t ever seem to care about me, even at the lowest point of my life. [I constantly moved schools, my race (I’m black) is completely different than most where I live, and I am a young introvert (sort-of) that doesn’t see a lot of things the way most do at my age.]
While all of this has taught me a lot and simultaneously makes me a stronger person, I believe that it (along with other factors)has contributed to my lack of desire/trust in having people by my side. I often feel that no one could possibly care about me or [they fail to] notice my absence in a group setting.
I am almost surprised by how quickly I transition from wanting to be included with people to how much I’d rather be alone. I guess that’s why I blog so much.
I take topics that are important to me and write about them. Here, I cannot be interrupted and all of my thoughts are clearly heard and not easy to ignore.
Sometimes, though, I do wonder if this is healthy…and if my entire life will be spent alone. Moreover, will I be completely happy if this happens?
I know that God will work things our for my good but I am also a little afraid of what the journey and end point will be.
The above is an old post written (and taken down) years ago, here, on TMU.
Since this post, I’ve discovered why I do some of the things I had listed. Simply put, it is because I am afraid of the close and raw transparency that it requires.
I am also reminded of why this platform was then beautiful in my eyes and that is because I put myself out there.
At the end of the day, if someone could relate, that was awesome if not, it didn’t matter. I spoke the truth; I said things here that I wouldn’t tell anyone else for years.
I was raw. I put my bruises for all to see.
I was myself. That is why I blogged and it is how I inspired others. By being myself.
Nowadays, I blog for you and not in the way you may think.
Since then, I’ve come to the realization that this platform is not just for me. It can be used to build others up and to inspire them- to help them along their journey, even. To offer a listening ear and a helpful tongue.
Some days I tell my story. Other days, I listen to others tell theirs. Sometimes, I step off of my platform and let them stand on the box so that people can tell their stories to a different crowd. Some days I come with advice and other days I simply bear sympathy.
Is it easy? Not at all.
I find myself struggling to keep pure motives all the time.
Being in the blogging game for this long allows me to know the outcome of doing certain “good” things so I fight with myself. I fight to follow your blog because you give interesting content not because I know you’ll do the same for me.
I fight to like your posts because I truly like them not because I know you’ll notice me. I fight to comment because I genuinely have something to say not for whatever other reason I know a good comment will bring. This has been my fight and I’m sure others are with me.
So, I guess the lesson that I learned in all of this is to not only speak the truth about myself but to support and encourage others that do the same.
So often we only focus on our words; what if we directed some of that attention to others? And what if our support wasn’t given to increase our follower count or engagement but simply because we like the writer and their work?
I think we say a lot of amazing things like “I write for myself only” but when you’ve blogged for years, isn’t it hard to keep it that way? Isn’t it hard to maintain that same gratitude of getting one “like” versus the disdain when we “only” received 10 likes for a post we spent hours on.
I know that this is hard to face and I realize that we may not do this all the time but the fact I’ve had to come to grips with is that no one truly owes me anything.
You don’t owe me one like, one follow, one comment, or one article. You owe me absolutely nothing.
Although this fact is saddening, it has made me immensely better.
How? I no longer settle with mediocre posts being published simply because I thought of it. I make sure that the titles are as good as I can get them. I make sure that pictures are properly placed and try to write something that brings value to you.
When you give me one like, I am excited. When I receive one email subscriber, I am excited. A comment is absolutely amazing.
But it takes work to stay thankful and humble in this capacity.
It takes me reminding myself after each post is published that no one owes me, period.
But it’s worth it, I promise. Statistics are important to me but the fact that you showed up to support my/our work means more.
So, thank you for showing up and I hope to help you in one way or another. 🙂