This is probably not the post you're hoping for today but I need to say something before it makes my head explode.
What I choose to write about on my blog is my decision, no one else's. Blogging appeals to me because it's uncensored, independent and raw and I hope that my writing about how Hanno and I live will help and encourage others who want to simplify their own lives. Any of the millions of bloggers throughout the world only have to type their message and click "publish" for it to be available world-wide for everyone to read. In the world of paper publishing there are a number of filters applied to the words you eventually read. In blogging there are no such filters, as I said, it's raw and uncensored, and I love that.
I spend about two hours a day writing my blog and reading the comments; the other 22 hours we are doing what I write about, and also what I don't write about. There is no way I would blog about everything we do. I have been very disappointed at the criticism I've received lately about not commenting on the disasters that are happening around the world, namely the earthquakes in New Zealand and Japan. Frankly, I think it's disgraceful that people used these catastrophes in such a shameful way. The first criticism came just after I returned to my blog after taking a couple of weeks off to finish the book. I was criticised for not commenting on the earthquake in Christchurch - even though I was not blogging when it happened!
Then, on Friday, this came.
Oh. Rhonda I could hardly believe my eyes. I am appalled that you have chosen to post today. Friday March 18th is Bloggers Silence Day in respect of the tragedy in Japan.
You chose to write of your money making project. So insensitive. You have just lost a reader.
Anna, just because you know about this event, it doesn't mean everyone does. Did you go to every blog that left a comment here to write a similar mean comment to them? I doubt it. Your disbelef was short lived and only directed at me. I chose to write about my book which is what the topic this blog is about. What a surprise. I wonder why you didn't leave your blog address so I could learn from your shining example. Goodbye.
Then, not long after:
I'm sure you're thrilled with the progress of your book but I was disappointed to find you're not taking part in the Bloggers Silence Day. This is to mark our feelings for the people of Japan.
Jackie, when you say "this is to mark our feelings for the people of Japan" who do you mean by "our"? Is there a group I'm part of that I don't know about? If there is, I resign. You obviously have a blog and have joined in this day of silence, why didn't you leave your blog address so we could all find out about it? I will not be told how to respond to anything, especially anything as sad and profound as these disasters. I will express my feelings how I think it's appropriate, and in a respectful way that actually makes a difference. You don't know what I did, how I felt about Japan, or what I did about it.
One of the things I really hate about the internet is that it gives cowards - they're ALWAYS anonymous - a platform to judge and criticise people they don't know. It's another form of bullying. I don't stand in judgement on anyone. No one. I am not perfect, I make mistakes, I am flawed, just as many people are. What I hope for is that I am not judged at all, but if I am, that you judge me in the context of what I do everyday, and have been doing here for the past four years. Why do you forget the two thousand days I wrote what you liked, and criticise the one day I didn't write what you expected to see? People seem to be quick to judge one mistake on the internet without taking the full measure of someone's history into consideration. One strike and you're out. It's like they're waiting for you to trip up. What causes that? What's happening to kindness, grace and tolerance? Are the qualities of consideration not necessary on the internet?
If I leave a comment on anyone's blog, I do it proudly under my name and not as "jackie" or "anna". Frankly Anna-Jackie (I think you're one person), I'd prefer not having readers like you. The people who comment here are part of a community of positive and friendly folk who seek to live well and with an open heart. They don't look for things to criticise. Life is too short.
I don't want to be neatly boxed up in a conveniently described package. I don't want to be predictable. I rarely go along with what everyone else is doing. And whenever I am touched deep to the core, my reaction is private and unspoken, not part of a meme on the internet.
I'm sorry everyone had to read this but I felt I had to say something - otherwise I'm accepting what they say about me. Tomorrow I'll write about making a cosy winter bed. It will make me feel better.