Monday, February 19, 2007

Why Am I Here?

I've been meaning to address this for awhile, so I'll give it a go now.

Not too long ago, I found out that I had, apparently, offended someone in my family by some of my comments here. That was certainly not my intention, and I did send a long e-mail trying to explain things. I feel the need to do so here a bit too.

I started this little blog here solely as a means to communicate with my friends and family after our move. After we arrived in our new home, I sent a mass e-mail to just about everyone I knew with all of our new contact info, and this site address. In response, my niece and a few friends got back to me to let me know they'd other stopped by or to say hello, glad we got here okay. I knew my mom was reading, because we talk on the phone. The rest of my family, except for one aunt (who unfortunately was the offended party), never got back to me. No e-mail, no phone call, no nothing. Oh, sorry, received one of those totally un-personal Christmas card/newsletters from one cousin.

In the meantime, I started making more imaginary friends - other bloggers whose sites I stopped by to read, and who would return the favor and read what I had to say. I have had more contact with many of these people who I have never met (and, for the most part, probably never will meet) than with most of my actual real extended "family" in the last, oh, 5 years. I know more about these people's lives, and they probably know more about mine, than most of my family. Abby, Karrie, Alison, the Stuntmother, Thordora, Amanda, Amanda, Jill, Ann, April ... and whoever I'm probably forgetting have felt like more of a family to me in the past year than most of my real family.

(And rather than list off the exclusions to the generalization about my family, because I'm afraid I'd forget someone, just know that if I believe you to be reading this, you're not included in that generalization. K?)

So, at some point, when I really didn't feel like the family was reading this at all, or that most of them even gave a crap about what I was doing or whether or not we made it to Texas safely, I figured it was time to say what I wanted, and not worry about who I offended. Because if they're not even going to read it, not going to return my e-mails or phone calls, not going to invite me - when I still lived close enough - to Thanksgiving or Christmas or birthdays - then really, why should I care?

Then I realized that there are members of my family who I do still care about, and who do still care about me. Maybe in the past they didn't show it well, didn't understand what was really going on and therefore judged my actions too severely, or have never been able to adequately express their feeligns about things, but they do care, and I do too.

I know, to some of that family, some of this will have been offensive, and for that I apologize, but at the same time, this needed to be said. This is my little piece of the Internet, and I have used it to say what I feel about things, and to be honest I needed to say what I said here. However, this is also my opportunity to say that in the future, I will not use this as my forum to say what I feel about everything. I am not the kind of person who can say half-truths, or hedge my words to avoid offense when it is something I feel strongly about, so if it is something I feel may be offensive to someone I care about, I'll refrain from saying it here. And if we are all honest, everything is offensive to someone.

Judy's Journeys was the title of a book I had as a little girl, and why I chose the name of this blog. This blog is part of my journey, but for now it might get a little less controversial (as if it ever was, really) and slightly more boring (if that is possible). Keep coming back for updates on the family, on the beauty of South Texas, on the wild ride of being married to a writer, but I'll keep my harsher opinions to myself, or at least away from here.


Abby said...

I gots me lots of imaginary friends too! However, I hold out hope that one day when you are here visiting we will meet, in real life! I am only osrry we "found" each other so late on BBC, right before you moved.

But, everything happens for a reason right?

Take care Judy. I am always stopping by....

alimum said...

We aren't going to meet in real life someday? WAAAAAAAAH (I am mentally lying, prone, on the floor and kicking my legs, punching my fists---yes, my inner child can throw a temper tantrum to rival any one that our toddlers may try to stage).

I think you are great. I find it hard to believe anyone would be offended by what you have said here. However, like you, I am not anonymous and, like you, I have invited my friends and family to read my blog, so I know what it is like to be worried. The problem, of course, is that it is really hard to know what will and won't offend someone. Families are even worse because oftentimes just saying the sky is blue can offend someone (this is why my extended family seldom makes an appearance in my blog.) I just hope you can work everything out without censoring yourself too much (I mean, I understand there is a certain amount of editing/censorship that we all do.)

Off to check on the goldfish.

Callie said...

Judy, I have known you for years and I can honestly say that I love you and admire you in ways that you can't imagine. I'm sure one day that other people in your family will learn to appreciate the qualities that, I for one, respect about you. No, you don't tell half-truths and you've called me on my bullshit. It just makes me love you all the more. I still feel your support on the internet and for that I am truly grateful. Thank you for inspiring me to be a better person, friend, and hopefully, one day soon, a better mother.

Callie said...

Wow, that was really cheesy. Just so you know, meant every word.

karrie said...

I almost never write what I really would like to write about.

So sorry someone gave you a hard time. I also cannot imagine what you said here that was inflammatory or upsetting??

Stuntmother said...

I'm with Alimum -- I find it hard to imagine anyone being offended by your blog words. But I too have hurt someone through my blog and know how hard it is to walk the line between public and private and honest and kind and true to yourself and loving to others.

Courage! I would hate to think you're self-censoring when there may be wonderful things you need to write down. Or not so wonderful things. Just keep writing.

karrie said...

Where are you? Juuuuuudyyyyyyyyyy.......