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Back to School, Valuing My Own Opinion & Cold Posting

The past few days have been taken up by uggins of washing and ironing, as well of lots of painting of the decorating kind, rather than anything artistic. Not to mention school runs, sleepless nights with a teething baby and that place I go to everyday where I’m paid to be stressed.

It is the beginning of the academic year (so happy new year to all who work in, around or are in some way connected with it), so I’m getting my older daughter back into the swing of things.

 

Cold off the Press

I’ve been writing a lot of posts that are scheduled for release on this blog, so hopefully there will always be something coming out over the next few months in and amongst other things I post on here. It takes a bit of pressure off me as a writer, in that I don’t feel bad about neglecting this blog, because there are posts due to be published between now and April next year. I’ll keep them coming and hopefully there will always be something for you to have a read of from me.

Scheduling posts is an awesome feature, which allows me to make the most out of any time I get (which isn’t much) to get writing. I can sort of binge blog by writing a few blogs in one go and then just have them sat waiting in a queue to be published months later.

Usually, this will involve the things in the series of blogs I have going on, such as my Emotional Memory Series, poetry from my ill-gotten youth and my 100 Objects Project.

 

Opinions

Despite having a public blog, twitter and even Facebook, I really don’t like sharing my real opinions on stuff that goes on either privately, or in the world at large. Just because the written word can be so easily misunderstood and misinterpreted. There is no intonation or expression to aid the words. They are just flat and dead on the screen and people tend to get the wrong end of the stick and read into things too much.

I’ve gotten into countless debates with people, who have just misunderstood my point completely and it has just made me more and more retreat into myself and keep my mouth shut. Online anyway. I’m just not the same person as I appear online, to a greater extent at least. Not that I’m secretly a hand-rubbing loony with a maniacal laugh and permanent inane grin or anything (within reason, I have kids), it’s just… I don’t know. A card board cut out, a fascia of me, but not me. A status update or blog post isn’t going to show you the way my eyes crinkle when I grin or show you a pit of sadness in my expression. I could type “I’m happy” and you could imagine – but not see – that I am. Was I crying when I wrote it or was I grinning? I find it easier to say “I’m okay” when I’m online. Because no-one is looking directly at me and seeing that I really am far from it.

You get a mini sample of me, a flavour if you will – but not me.

Obviously, my husband gets to see the troubled look in my eyes or the smile on my face. I guess he is the one that really matters, when all is said and done.

Although it is easier to say the words in typed form online than say them in reality, there is honestly nothing I say online that I wouldn’t say unplugged. I am no faceless keyboard warrior or feel braver online than off. If I’ve said it on the net, I’m going to say it in the street and that is final. I remember someone telling me they were upset to see me posting about my grief for my daughters online (it upset THEM. Imagine how much I couldn’t give a damn about THEIR feelings!) and felt I should do it offline only. I explained to this person that there is not a thing I say online that I do not say off and that a lot of my friends on Facebook are actually fellow grieving mothers, as well as family and friends who understand, but I do not see often. I don’t live where I grew up, so during those periods when the grief washes over me (as it still does, you do not ‘get over’ losing a child/children), I find talking online to my geographically distant friends helps me feel less isolated. I do have friends where I live, but back then in the worst dark days of it all, I wanted to be around those who had always known me and my family who were miles away (and even in other countries like USA and Australia).

I’m not saying that people are not entitled to their opinions – they are and good for them – I just feel restrained in mine in case I get misinterpreted and someone attacks me. So, I shy more and more away from ‘thinking’ online. If there is such a thing. My blog is probably where I do the most ‘thinking’ but even then, I worry and second guess myself.

I’m fearful really, of expressing myself online and in the written form. Yet, does my opinion really matter? Does anyone even remotely care in the slightest what I think about anything? Is it mere vanity for me to sit there and believe that my words mean anything to anyone in the first place, so why even bother sharing them?

Just as importantly – do I even care that much about other peoples? Really? Even some ‘academics’ can talk out of their backsides a lot of the time, yet if I spoke to my mother in law, I’d learn far more about life or a particular subject because she is one of the wisest people I have ever met. It’s about identifying who you get your points of view from and whose to value, rather than expecting everyone, or types of people to be understanding or wise or knowledgeable.

The person who seeks my opinion more than anyone’s is my husband and why else should anyone else matter? He understands what I am trying to say about stuff. He gets where I am coming from and what I mean, because he knows me.

I do of course, value, encourage and enjoy other people’s opinions. I like people who challenge my own and make me think about things in a different way – don’t get me wrong. It is more the “I must have the last word”; finger-pointing crowd who have a lot of stuff in their heads that they are convinced is right and that is that, everyone else is wrong. The chip on their shoulder has a chip on its shoulder. That sort of a person I suppose I’m trying to say.

So the more I see and hear things that I disagree with, the more I shrink away from voicing a public opinion on them. I think the best thing for me to talk about and comment on is myself, as I’m not going to kick off at me for being dumb or not getting it right or whatever. I don’t like the sound of my own voice by any means, however I think the problem is, is that there are just too many who love theirs too much.

I hope you are all well and writing like the gorgeous, crazy people you are!

Love, peace and bestest snuggly wishes,

Cat x

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