A lot of stuff about blogging lately led me to ponder what blogging is and what it means in our online society. I have no delusions about the idea that all the world is online; it isn't but it grows constantly worldwide. There was a story on the news this week about the purported oldest blogger in the world, the 108-year-old Olive Riley. But she doesn't actually write her blog, just feeds comments to the person who puts it online for her. Then there are the feminist, or post-feminist bloggers who don't know what life was like pre-feminism. The Australian civil service used to force any female employee to leave the public service if they married. I never really thought seriously about feminism until I married the first time and found that it didn't completely fulfill me despite what society had led me to believe (it must have been subliminal advertising because my parent's marriage was certainly no shining example of marriage being loving harmony). While the glass ceiling is not as impenetrable as it once was, the salary difference between males and females in comparable jobs is still there. There are blogs talking about everything (and on occasion, nothing). I just listened to Brenda's interview with Crazy Aunt Purl who used her blog to get through the pain of being left by her husband and the subsequent divorce (and I just got my copy of her book Drunk, Divorced and Covered in Cat Hair). Brenda's summer camp badges include "Knitting got me through my divorce" but not as yet "Knitting got me through the death of my husband."
You all know how I've talked about things that have happened to me recently. I can't tell yet whether blogging has gotten me through the depths of the feelings I've been through since I lost my Bear. My rheumatologist told me today that the loss of a spouse is the top of the list of stresses that can occur in a person's life and that the physical pain I am living with is a part of the grieving process, just expressed by my brain through pain. He offered upping the dose of my SSRI which has helped when I self dosed (and I don't want to go through months of waiting to see a new psychiatrist when I went through so many anti-depressants that did nothing or worse to finally find this one) and extra dosages of Neurontin as I need, but to watch out for the drowsiness and other side effects we are both familiar with. He also predicted it would be two years before I would feel like myself again, but I don't know how to feel myself while living alone in Australia. It's a new life I will have to figure out for myself. I need to keep my social network alive, and I worked a little on that today by meeting a friend for coffee. I know it's a pro-active thing that I must work at and not sit home pining, but get out and keep existing contacts alive and make new ones. I need to make plans for me without my other half. I have never liked the eternal flame type of mourners, who never move on and continue to grieve 25 years after an event. I will always grieve for my Bear but he would never want me to become a recluse because if his loss. He would want me to go out and continue my life and follow my interests. I also spoke to both my dr and my therapist about feeling guilty of not sufficiently honouring Brien's memory by thinking about moving on, even while thinking with the other side of my brain that that's absurd. I can't imagine ever having another "love interest" after having my soul mate, even tho many of the self-help widow books seem to go from grieving to dating.
I was flabberghasted when my blog stats passed 5000 and seem to continue to increase. I don't know who reads my blogs outside family and friends but whoever you are out there, thank you because you have somehow validated my babbling to know that I do reach somebody, although I'd probably blog even if I only had one reader because that's why I started this adventure 18 months ago. I read a lot of blogs and could spend all day following links and reading what other people are up to. I sort of feel that Ravelry has taken the pressure off posting on projects although I'll still post regarding FOs or when I take photos. Not everyone is interested in exactly what yarn I used for what. There isn't any equivalent for spinners or weavers and some of us chafe at that because it's such a powerful tool for knitters. If anyone cares, I am spinning some merino that was the free fleece given to me eons ago. I intend on plying it with mohair, just spun, for sock wool. Both are now white so dyeing will happen. And I still haven't got to my loom. Sometimes social networking takes time, as does grocery shopping, visiting doctors and life in general. Thank you all again for electronic hand-holding. I need all the help I can get.