This past year, it will have been 8 years since I started this blog. What an amazing journey it has been. :-) My original purpose for starting a blog, was (first and foremost) to keep a personal record, an online journal. Second, I would often use my blog in my work as a professional designer. As I pulled away from the designing profession about 4 years ago, my original purpose for keeping a blog, became the sole purpose. Through challenging years in my life, this blog became not only a place for me to record events and precious moments, but a place of healing. Writing was therapeutic for me and focusing on the countless blessings in my life (and sharing those blessings openly with others) helped me stay strong and positive. After my divorce, this blog continued being a place of healing and a place to record the story of a new beginning....and the continuation of the beautiful story of me and my angel babies.
Throughout the past 8 years, I have actually considered making this blog private a number of times....due to negative feedback I would receive here and there. When I was a designer, I had a lot of eyes on my blog.....and a few readers who, for whatever reason, felt that their happiness would be increased if they could somehow decrease mine bysending horribly viscious e-mails about my design work and even, occasionally, my personal life. Those e-mails hurt at first. A lot. I would cry and wonder what I possibly could have done to offend someone that I didn't even know (or someone I did know, and had posted anonymously to protect their identity). Interestingly enough, I would receive the most negative e-mails when I would share my personal thoughts about and testimony of the Gospel. It wasn't until a few years into my blogging, that I learned to disregard these negative e-mails. I ached for these people and wished them true happiness and would pray that God would help fill the void in their hearts, for I knew that I had honestly done nothing to intentionally hurt anyone. HAD I intentionally written anything to hurt feelings, I would have been the FIRST to come forward and apologize.Throughout my divorce and even afterwards, those cruel, albeit rare e-mails continued, but became extremely personal. By that time, I had been through many wonderful hours of counseling with an angel therapist (and now, dear friend) and realized that those e-mails were simply sent either out of lack of understanding or out of pain. In either case, I felt no ill will towards any of the people who sent the comments and e-mails, even if they WERE sent with the intent to cause hurt.
So why, you may ask, have I continued to keep this journal public? If the sole purpose of my blog truly is to keep a record of my family, then there is no need FOR it to be public..right? The truth is.....for every negative e-mail and/or comment, I have received very literally hundreds of positive ones over the past 8 years. Women (and even a few men), whose hearts and souls have been somehow lifted by small things I have written. Reading those heartfelt e-mails and comments, has been a little added blessing to maintaining a blog. And so, every time I was about to change the settings, I would receive another kind e-mail - an e-mail from a woman whose prayer was answered, whose faith was strengthened, whose heart decided to forgive one more time, or who decide for HOPE instead of hopelessness for one more day....after reading some random exerpt from my blog. And then, I would change my mind again.
However, after 8 years, those negative e-mails keep coming (as rare as they may be). And although they are still so far outweighed by the positive feedback, they are still such a serious source of negative energy. Many of them seem to be people who feel that since they read my blog, that they must know the whole story of my life....and therefore, feel comfortable and entitled to judge me and even my little family. The harshest ones, however, seem to come from those who should know better. People who I love, respect and admire...and should know me and my heart. Although I know that I owe no explanation, especially when I have done nothing to intentionally hurt or offend, it is BECAUSE of my love for these dear people, that I seem to find myself wanting to explain and/or defend myself. However, even that seems to be for nought, since those who jump to conclusions are usually not open to hearing the truthof things anyway.....which leaves my heart aching.
And so, it is with a slightly heavy heart, that I have decided to do what I probably should have done a long time ago. It is time to make my blog, my online journal, private, protected and sacred. My little family is sacred. It is the most beautiful and sacred thing I have. My sweetheart and my little ones are my heart..they are my life. I cannot and will not stand another moment (even as rare as those moments are), having the integrity and intentions of myself and of this dear and righteous family under question...no matter WHO those accusations come from or what their intentions may be. I know and understand that much of these e-mails and comments simply come as a result of lack of understanding, knee-jerk reaction and possibly still, heartache. Their judgments are generally based only on the information they have been given and the rest, from mere assumptions based on that information. How I wish that ALL would "seek first to understand...." before making quick judgments. But that just doesn't happen. And truthfully, I am just tired. I am absolutely weary of false accusations from those who don't seem to even bother to first seek out the truth. This negative spirit should have NO part in this amazingly beautiful story we are writing. It is not surprising to me that the Adversary would want to somehow blacken or twist this miracle. I..will..not...allow..him....room. He is not welcome here. And if making our family story private is a small way of preventing his influence from attempting to tarnish what God has brought together, then making this blog private has now become an EASY decision for me.
Our story is a beautiful one....even the "stormy" times that brought us to where we are today. It has always brought me so much joy to share it...with our posterity...and with you. However, as I mentioned above, that was not my original intent, my original purpose for beginning an online journal. And since this beautiful story and this incredibly Divine little family IS so sacred to me, I want to protect it as much as I can. On another point, I also want to protect those who are tempted to make false judgments, from doing so. It is so tempting for some, to assume they know the whole story. What a tragedy. Even as much as I HAVE written....there is so very much that has NOT been written.
I want to thank all of my blog readers that have been an absolute LIGHT to me. I know there have been thousands of you throughout the last 8 years...and each of you is a blessing in my life. A handful of you, I have even met personally, and have become dear friends with. Thank you for your countless e-mails, stories and kind words that you have shared with ME in response to my blog entries. I admire you so much for your love, your strength, your faith and your beautiful attitudes about life. My "door" is always open to you (email@example.com)...and I would love to keep in touch. Although my original intent was simply to keep a journal, having a world of friends "listening" has made journaling particularly wonderful, and has encouraged me to write on a more regular basis. My sweet internet friends......I sure love you. Don't ever forget that...and even if you do, please don't ever forget how much GOD loves you. NO matter where you are or what storm you find yourself in, He is ALWAYS there....ALWAYS. You are never alone.
Although my blog will now be personal, I will make sure that our dear friends and family are still allowed access....should you desire. :-) Blogs are a wonderful way for family to keep in touch....and our family and friends are so very dear to us. Since I have never had a private blog, I am not quite certain how that works. If you are interested in continuing to read my blog, you may have to send a request, or even just send me an e-mail. Because I don't know exactly how it will work, make sure to let me know who you are when you request to be a viewer...and not just your e-mail. I wish I knew all of your e-mail addresses...LOL...but I don't! :-) I will wait out the course of this week (to give adequate notice of the change) and then change the status of this blog. At that point, I am certain it will prompt you with what to do in order to be accepted to view our blog. Please do keep in mind, that considering the circumstances, I will be adding viewers with discretion....but am so happy to have sweet and trusted friends and family continue reading. :-)
All the best to you, my dear friends. A holiday (and EVERY DAY) greeting from our happy family, to yours (as expressed in this 5x5 trifold Christmas card from our family this year).....
"May you always be surrounded by angels, may you live your life with passion and may your heart and home be filled with love."
And my "last lecture" to you....in short, "Choose HAPPINESS...always!" You are loved!