Lessons from 10 Years of Writing / Blogging

Posted on November 2, 2015


Why am I not blogging more? This is a question I have asked myself several times over the last few months. I know the answer. It is a good answer. But it still makes me sad. For the longest time, my blog used to have the following text in big font:

“The answers to life lie within each of us. Mine come to me when I write.”

This has been true for me for the last ten years. I used to journal as a child. And then in 2004, I used some of the money that my Pappa was saving for my wedding to buy myself a state-of-the-art IBM laptop. It was also my first computer. I remember being so excited about it and I found myself writing furiously everyday. I wrote poems, essays and rambling thoughts about my inner demons. And soon, I was writing short stories. In fact, that’s where the name Henri comes from. My stories always had a twist to the ending and I fancied myself as a 21-st century female O Henry.

Contrary to what people believe, these were not stories about me. These were stories to inspire me. I never knew what story was going to pour out of me, and when it did, I always learned something from it. It wasn’t (only) about showing off my writing prowess. It was about teaching myself how to live. I wrote 25 stories and I tried somewhat hard to find myself a publisher. I realized, I was not good at receiving rejection.

Inner Peace

I felt this way – and writing helped me to calm down!

Soon the short stories gave way to what I call “how-to” pieces. How to control your anger, envy, PMS…I wrote about everything that ever plagued me. And I found that to write these pieces, I was having to take little steps to resolve those issues within me. This led to a great deal of self-awareness and actualization. I was meditating more than ever. I was praying more than ever. I was working out more than ever. I was brutally honest with myself more than ever. The results were, I am not going to lie, pretty fantastic.

So why am I not writing more now? Am I perfect? Far from. The answer is simple. I am happy. I am content. When I began writing, I was really sad. I was suffering from PTSD owing to having been a teen caregiver to my mother who had Young Onset Alzheimer’s. I was direction-less. I had my heart broken several times. I was not in a job that I truly wanted.

Fast-forward ten years ahead – I landed my dream job in 2015. I have been married for almost five years and I feel very much in love with my husband, whom I began dating in 2007. I am able to walk away from a fight. I am able to let sleeping dogs lie. I am okay with being chubby. I am basically okay.

I miss the story-telling and the poignant poetry-composing and the excited tips sharing. And what I miss most is having those little revelations each time I wrote about how to live life. All these years, I wrote for appreciation and validation. I guess I have come to a point where I can validate myself now. Is this good-bye? I don’t think so. I think I just have to find a new vein of writing. Like the last five pounds are the hardest to lose, the second leg in the journey of self-actualization is harder.

I am looking forward to having that revelation.

And here’s something I learned (mostly about myself) from writing on this blog for 10 years:

1. I hate blogging challenges: Tried two – failed at both miserably. I don’t control the writing. It directs me. It’s simple.

2. The most loved entries are about my marriage and relationships.

3. I changed my blogging style because I know my dad is now reading this blog. As is my MIL. As are her sisters.

4. This blog probably saved my life.

5. I feel more hip when I write.

6. People blog as a phase. Blogs were a phase. My blog went through phases. But my blog is here to stay.

7. I may not possess the vocabulary or the literary finesse of my friends, but I think I have a distinct voice.

8. I no longer care if anyone reads it. It’s come a full circle. I began writing when no one read me. I became obsessed with statistics at one point. I am back to where I started. I no longer share my blog on Facebook. I am not on Facebook.

9. One is truly never alone. Even when I felt alone, my writing connected me to complete strangers who understood what I went through and shared their experiences with me.

10. I am now 200!

And incidentally this is my 200th post on this blog! Yayyyy

And incidentally this is my 200th post on this blog! Yayyyy

Posted in: introspection