As a child, I wasn’t allowed to watch much television. Books were my main source of entertainment—and a relief and distraction from the conflict around me. I was embarrassed that I didn’t understand my friends’ conversations about the shows they watched, though I tried to pretend I did and I caught glimpses at their houses whenever I could. I often felt like an alien dropped into a schoolyard, trying to masquerade as a normal kid. I don’t miss that feeling, but I do miss the sense of my own imagination as a bountiful companion, an infinite resource, and a place to take refuge.
Nowadays I tend to turn to social media in search of this feeling, even though I rarely find more than a glimmer there. Sometimes I don’t even find a glimmer. I know I’m not alone in searching outside myself for what’s already within me, continually accessible if only I’m willing to make the time and space to connect with it. The best part of writing for me—though it only feels like the best part in hindsight, not while in process—is that it requires that kind of silent, gentle communion with my own mind and heart.
Looking back, I always found blogging most meaningful when I treated and experienced this site as a kind of confessional, a safe place to experiment with sharing things that I didn’t feel quite sure how to share, often things that I was in some way reluctant to share. The fact that people don’t regularly read blogs anymore makes this feel like the perfect small, quiet place to do that again.