Ups and Downs and Other Lessons

It’s been a couple of weeks since I started my blog.  To be honest, around the same time I was starting my blog, I had just shared one of my first writings publicly.  (See link at bottom of blog)  It was a response to a blog I had read by Wendy Grossman, as well as, how Wendy and I became friends.  Long story short, my post on Wendy’s blog got some serious recognition and feedback.  The response was overwhelming and exciting.  I felt like I was ready to quit my day job and become some famous author.  Ok, ok, maybe I got a little ahead of myself.  

I was on a natural high from the love and positive comments I was getting from everyone.  But as we all know what goes up must come down.  And then it happened…the crash.  The negative comments, the criticism, the misconstrued words.  As much as I tried to prepare myself for this, there is no preparation.  It’s amazing what the power of words can do.  

I learned a lot from that first post.  I learned that words have the power to create and the power to destroy.  I learned that once you put something out there, you can’t really get it back.  I started thinking, maybe I’m too sensitive to be a writer, if I can’t take criticism.  After a few days of anxiety, my mind spinning itself out into ridiculous scenarios and trying to think of how to fix or correct the fact that someone took my words the wrong way, I had to step back and look from a different perspective.

I started reading blogs and reviews, comments by people on facebook and all over the internet   I started seeing how some people, regardless if right or wrong, are just rude and hateful.  I saw that some things, just aren’t for everyone.  For example, I love India Arie, so while listening to her music one day, I started to notice there were songs i would skip and others I would play twice.  I realized that certain songs I just like better, they sound better or I relate more to the song.  It doesn’t mean she is an awful artist or some of her songs suck.  It means we all have our own point of view, our own preferences.  It means some days we crave chocolate and others we want salty and spicy!

I also realized just how sensitive I am. I have always known I was sensitive.  I’m a people pleaser.  I hate conflict.  Really I focused on this about myself a little more.  I kept trying to tell myself not to be so sensitive.  I kept saying not to take the negative comments to heart.  Don’t let one or two people bring me down.  But I did.  I cried, I felt anxious, I couldn’t eat. Yes it was a bit much, but it is me.  It’s ok to be sensitive.  It made me realize that is what makes me, ME!  My sensitivities give me the ability to see other people’s point of view.  To try and understand people’s pain and stories even if I have never lived them.  My empathy is a gift.  To feel love above all, you must experience pain and hurt and anger so that you can appreciate all the beauties this world has to offer.  

So as scary and wonderful as it was to start putting myself out there, it was healing and strengthening too.  It is helping me to grow and nurture my inner child.  I actually had a bit of writer’s block for the past couple of weeks.  I was still writing, but i was scared to think of sharing again.  To put myself back out there. I have now realized that every blog, every post, every word that I share, is helping me embrace my inner Ginger.

 

To read the original blog I am referring to, please check out Wendy’s blog linked below

http://wendyjanegrossman.com/2015/11/16/a-reader-responds-elissa-butson-on-why-shes-attracted-to-black-culture/

 

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4 thoughts on “Ups and Downs and Other Lessons

  1. Thank you for this heartfelt, and extremely honest and vulnerable post. I completely get where you are coming from as I have been in that place more than once, while on my blogging journey. You broached a subject that most people wouldn’t dare touch, so you are brave for doing so. Your thoughtfulness afterward also shows you want to reflect and learn from what you put out there, and a reminder to me to be thoughtful about the power of words, and being mindful of how I say things. Keep on going–you’re a great writer!

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  2. Thanks Wendy! I definitely appreciate your support! You have been very encouraging and supportive. In fact, this blog probably wouldn’t be happening right now if it weren’t for your inspiration! So glad to have met you! 🙂

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  3. Absolutely love this!! I am and always have been extremely sensitive also. (in sure you have seen it) we have a lot in common, especially when it comes to empathy. I also do not and never have liked conflict. Never wanted to be around people that always wanted nothing but drama and to bring people down. I will say this again, you inspire so many people. You allow is to feel what your feeling inside. Its amazing and I love it. You will get some nasty responses but it’s all part of putting yourself out there. As hard as it is, you have to keep pushing through to show all of is you are strong enough to deal with the criticism. Your a great person and I’m proud to call you my friend!! ❤

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    1. Thank you. It was very scary to put myself out there and it still can be. Every time I go to publish something I say a prayer.
      When I receive positive comments like the ones you post, it inspires me to continue sharing. Writing for myself is healing, but knowing that it enourages and inspires others when I share it is even more healing. I always think about when you are on an airplane and you have to use the oxygen mask before you can save everyone else. I had no idea when I started sharing my writing it would not only help me, but help others. Thank you for continuing to read my blogs and encouraging and supporting me.

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