[-ginning, -gan, -gun]
1. to start (something)
2. to bring or come into being
3. to start to say or speak
4. to have the least capacity to do something
So, over tomato soup and a whole grain roll at the Good Earth restaurant, I lamented, "I'm just so lost, I feel like I don't know my purpose in life!". Janice looked at me with great compassion and patience and asked, "Why do you need to have a purpose? What if the purpose in life is just to be happy?". I played that over in my mind for years, particularly in my early 30's as I realized I certainly wasn't happy. I value what she said, and it still rings true to me that if all we did in life was to sit still in the simple things, the true things, like love, joy, kindness... perhaps more of us would be more fulfilled.
In 2005, I met a new and wonderful friend, Mie, who shared her "blog" (http://www.kokochi.com/) with me. Back then, I'd never even heard of a blog. You mean you have a website where you put pictures of yourself and just talk about your life? I was FASCINATED. I went home and ate up pages and pages of her blog. It was such an intimate peek into her life and I was quite inspired.
So, I started my first blog! I named her graceopenheart and simply went mad. At first I posted everything, every feeling, ever meal, every picture. Soon, however, I began to spill over almost uncontrollably with my thoughts, my emotions, my words. I shared my blog with only my closest friends, and many complimented me on my writing and especially my "poetry". I remember feeling confused about this characterisation of my writing as "poems". I thought... these aren't poems, these are my feelings. I wasn't writing poems, I was just writing about myself. I didn't understand.
Over time, my stories became longer and more thoughtful, especially as I watched trends emerge. From the beginning, the blog was just for me, not "for" anyone else. Writing poured out of me (as it always has) without fear of what others think. It helped me express the excitement, disappointment, confusion and growth of the moment. Although I was praised for milestones, bravery, courage, honesty, etc., I continued to discount its meaning and significance. It was and still is my home, my touchstone.
After a year of telling my stories (and a large increase in readership - 100 hits a day from several countries - who are these people and how did they find my blog!?), I began to feel a bit self-conscious that I wrote so much about me me me! But it was SO fulfilling, more than anything. I would be struck by creative thoughts and I would race to write them down. I had one thought in particular that was "the message", but again I discounted it completely. If I could just get paid to tell stories about my feelings and my journey, take constant courses in self-growth and support others in their growth, I would be happy. The whiplash reaction was that this was very selfish, to want to be so self-absorbed, and that no one would read that!
Little did I know or trust, but this is exactly what I intend to do. It never occurred to me when I started my blog that my stories would inspire and motivate people. I've always known I would write a book someday, but thought it had to be about a topic. I thought, well, years from now, I'll know what to write about. I finally heard the answer in a whisper and I'm now listening... write about myself, tell my victories, my struggles, my stories. People want to read them and I want to tell them.
Thank you Oprah for telling yours, the WAKE UP to your "calling". She heard it, she felt it, she knew it. As I listened to her everything snapped inside of me. I wanted to scream out to the world, I KNEW it! I KNEW there's something I'm meant to do. Thank God I persisted. Thank God I didn't let that nagging question go. I kept seeking. I recalled part of Oprah's story about how she had tolerated many things she disliked or that didn't feel right in her past jobs. I felt that way. Over and over I felt like I *should* like some great job or great opportunity that stood in in front of me. I tried to convince myself, to force myself. But it never worked. But I didn't. I sank.
I'm starting with "I believe in you".