The papers have been filled for the last several weeks with lists of the best blogs (from about 200 million worldwide) to soul searching about why we write them. This is an exercise I engage in about once a year, so it seems a fitting opportunity for my annual introspection.
Why do I keep writing this blog? It is not for lack of other things to do. It is somehow intrinsically rewarding for me, but I’m not sure why.
I do know some obvious reasons which are not why: it’s not for money, and it’s not to change the world. The comments and nugget of regular readers are critical to what I get out of it, but I positively flee from doing anything to “increase readership.”
When I first started this blog, I naively thought I was and would remain anonymous. That assumption has been totally disabused. I have been outed by immediate family and friends whom I’ve know for fifty years. This has changed the content of what I write, since I am aware that I could cause a great deal of pain and confusion by violating the privacy of others.
And yet I blab on. I think there are two things that keep me going. One is, like teaching, writing helps me think, to figure things out, to clarify issues, something which I have loved to do since I walked into first grade at St. Joseph’s grade school at the age of six.
And it makes me feel connected. Supported even. We’re all in this together – all struggling with the same human problems, asking the same existential questions, finding joy in those we love, beauty in what we see or hear or learn, wondering if we have the wisdom and strength to face the challenges that our lives throw up.
And so once again, I want to say thank you for being there. Thank you for reading this. Thank you for your comments.
As Shakespeare says in Twelfth Night: