I’m not really sure whether this post is ironic or coincidental. You all may have to help me out with it.
Today marks my third anniversary as a blogger with WordPress. That’s pretty exciting. At least it would be if I’d written anything of substance in the last 3 months, but I haven’t. So, I kinda feel like I didn’t deserve the little trophy icon WordPress presented me with this morning. I kinda feel like I don’t deserve much actually.
I’ve been trying to write this post for several weeks now. I’ve sat down dozens of times, opened WordPress and stared at the New Post icon. Am I ready to write this? I would ask myself and invariably the answer was always “no”. No I was not ready to discuss how vulnerable I’ve been feeling. No I was not ready to discuss how scared I’ve become to write. No I was not ready to discuss what brought me to this frozen state of inaction. I was not ready.
The question remains – am I ready now? I’m not sure. I’m feeling nauseated, but I keep typing. I guess that’s a good thing.
As some of you may know I’m in a small legal battle with my ex-huband. I wrote a very brief blog about it in November, Priceless. This situation has caused me a great deal of stress, time and money. It’s also set me back in my personal growth and the strides I’ve made with my mental health.
My ex-husband is not a kind man. He is a charming man. He makes and breaks promises like most people breathe. He is a selfish man. He cares little for the plights of others. Instead he will walk away from anyone as soon they need something from him. For these reasons, and many more, I say the kindest thing he ever did for us (me and the kids) was leave.
As I mentioned in Priceless, he hasn’t paid child support in over 6 years. The Family Responsibility Office (FRO) is affiliated with the government of Ontario and is mandated to help single parents, like me, chase down dead-beat parents. There is a huge debate about its effectiveness, but I digress. Last year, FRO took my ex to court and he was ordered to pay the arrears, in full, by May 2013 or he would face jail time.
The day after Mother’s Day (the very beginning of May) last year I was served with papers. My ex was taking me to court. His goal? To have the tens of thousands of dollars he owed me in arrears dropped to nothing and to have his monthly support payments dropped to the most minimal amount possible. Just to let you know, I already gave him 2 years with no support payments while he went to school. What did FRO do with this information? Nothing. They cannot take action while the case is in proceedings (and my ex was working under the table, and contract jobs so FRO couldn’t garnish his wages anyway).
All this was to take place 500 km (over 300 miles) away. I hired a lawyer. My ex is representing himself. I have traveled three times now (over 3000 kms or 1800 miles return) to attend court. I have had to sit in the same room with this man three times now as he contrives to weasel out of supporting his children. I have spent money I don’t have and given energy I can’t waste to this situation.
And what has it done for me, besides stretching my patience and my finances? It has left me feeling vulnerable. Excruciatingly vulnerable. Curl-up-under-the-blankets-and-hope-the-boogie-man-doesn’t-get-you vulnerable. Giving-a-speech-in-front-of-your-bullies-naked vulnerable. Don’t-talk-about-it-don’t-Facebook-it-and-sure-the-heck-don’t-blog-about-it vulnerable.
My therapist said that blogging makes me vulnerable anyway. It doesn’t really matter what I’m blogging about (and the subject matter with which I started my blog is touchy stuff anyway), blogging makes a person vulnerable. She also told me that I may have difficulty finding a job when I’m okayed to go back to work because potential employers may be turned off my virtual presence. They might disagree with some of the topics I’ve discussed and may be hesitant to hire me because I’ve been open about my mental health issues.
So I stopped blogging. I didn’t just stop blogging though, I stopped communicating. I stopped being introspective. Basically, I just stopped. And it’s been painful. Not just for me, but for those who love me too. As Maya Angelou said, “There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you.”
I have been in agony. I have been in internal battle – should I write? Should I keep making myself vulnerable? Or should I remain silent? Allow the world to staunch my words? But the words have become a burden and I can no longer carry them.
I can’t promise I’ll write with greater frequency, but I can tell you that I feel more at ease than I have in months. I’d like to take a moment to thank Kate at Did That Just Happen and Larry at Me, Myself and Kids for their continued support, encouragement and kind words.
So, I’ve written my first post in months about why I haven’t been writing. And I’ve written it on my blogging anniversary. So basically I blogged about not blogging on a blogging milestone. Is that ironic or coincidental? Help me out.