I’ve gone through some growing pains with this blog. It started out as just a way to stay in touch with my kids when we were living about 300 miles away from each other. About the time I realized that they weren’t reading it that much, I figured out that I really loved writing in here and I wanted to keep writing even if they didn’t read it or if no one read it. I loved writing out what I was feeling and it helped me process all the stuff going on in my day. And then I started doing interviews.

The interviews I do with people are really there because I’m selfish and I want to know what drives other people. I’m fascinated by people. What makes them tick? Why do they do what they do? What makes them what they are? When I find someone that I’m interested in, I pester them until they agree to let me poke them in the brain. Usually it works. Sometimes it doesn’t. Either way is fine, but of course I prefer the former. And if you enjoy them – Great! But I don’t do them every day or even every week. Sometimes I write about just plain’ol me.

So, I can’t really explain it, but now I find myself in the position of lame email stalkers, wonderful loyal readers, casual drive-bys and various family members. Some of those people want to tell me what I should write about and what I should not write about. Some of them think that because they have been reading me for years, that in some way they own a piece of this online persona and they should get to weigh in their thoughts about what goes on here. Well, I have to say to them: sorry, but no. I respectfully decline your offer to tell me what I can and can’t write about. This online persona is attached to a real person – me. I have feelings and thoughts and emotions all my own and they are ME and REAL and will continue to dominate no matter how you feel.

There is this pressure to keep things light and funny and witty. I can do that some of the time but other times I’m depressed, or sad or something bad happened and I want to talk about it. And I can! Because this is my space! Like the past week or two have been insanely hard. The business is growing and we have clients that want work done and not enough people and time to do it. And Joe is going through some major stuff and regrets getting married to me. And there is a divorce looming. And my kids are sad. And I cut my finger really deep. And my ovaries hurt. And things basically suck. So, where can I talk about that if not here? And the minute I think about writing it all out, I get another email from someone asking why I write about mental illness when I can be so funny at other times. Well, guess what? I’ll write about whatever I want to write about. And there are so many blogs out there in the world that I’m sure you can find something that you might like more. So – go. Or stay. Or do whatever. But if you decide to stick around and hate what I write – don’t tell me. I don’t care. Just wait a few days and I’ll have a new interview up or I’ll write about something cute the kids said or post a new photo. It happens. I swear.

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29 Comments

  1. Leah, I’m delurking just to let you know I love you the way you are…especially ending your post with the knowledge that laughter, love and beauty still exist when the world seems so bleak.

  2. Hey Leah, I’m also delurking to echo what earth girl said above and to say that I’m sorry you’re going through some tough stuff right now.

  3. I think your site is wonderful as it is. You should feel free to write whatever you want to. Sometimes I feel like I shouldn’t have a blog because I am not old enough or witty enough, I don’t have kids, I am at time uninteresting, I have horrible grammar and I have a problem with depression. Then I remember why I love to blog. It clears my head and it makes me feel good. I also have a terrible memory and it is so nice to be able to look back and remember things.

    I love reading blogs because I love to get into peoples heads. I love knowing about other people and their lives and how different they are from mine and how much of the same they are to me. I think there is something beautiful in that and I think there is some art in being able to see into people. Seeing them exposed. I think it is terrible that you have been told what to write about in ny way because doing so would take away the art of it all.

  4. delurking here too.

    I’m sorry that you’ve been getting that sort of pressure. Pressure to be or act or write something you’re not – and I love to read what YOU write. Whatever it may be. Your book, your blog, your interviews, your art. You. Leah. I hope they all listen, and don’t email me when it’s not something they like. I, however, love it all. I’m sorry to hear you and joe are having trouble, I’m so sorry. Good wishes and thoughts to you.

    -amy

  5. I love your blog as well. I would love to have my own but am too scared to put my thoughts out in public. It’s refreshing to read someone else’s thoughts and know that I am not alone in my struggles with life, family, depression, et al. Thanks for being a voice in my world…

  6. I love your blog too! And I love that you don’t just write fluffy cute stuff. Who cares about that? I could go to Hallmark for that.

    Angela said it so well above, that the great thing about reading someone’s blog is peeking into their head. Just like your interviews — which I also think are great — except this is an ongoing interview with yourself.

    Just figure, for every lame-advice-type email that you get, there are a hundred of us out here, quietly appreciating all that you do and share, for exactly who you are.

    btw, I’m Kate’s friend in Wisconsin. She says that you rock as much I always thought you did. 🙂

  7. I am a lurker here too and I can only add “ditto”. If someone is a dedicated reader they don’t care if it’s happy, sad, campy or crappy. 😉 They just enjoy your thoughts, keep doing what you do cuz it’s pretty amazing. 😀

  8. To echo what Bess said, I think the problem is that so many of us who love your writing and read often don’t always chime in and say so, while it is often so emotionally fulfilling to send negative notes to folks who aren’t doing what we want.

    So consider this a note to say I love so much of what you write, and you are one of the folks who inspires me to keep writing, and to talk about my own emotional issues when they crop up. Thanks, and keep working it!

    You rock!

  9. Well said, Leah! Your site is great just the way it is. If they don’t like it, they can SUCK IT. Sorry to hear you’re having a rough time right now. Hang in there!

  10. Racquetball / Confession / Marriage…

    I am bringing, moving, pushing my actions (which have been slack) to match my passion and love for Leah, and for our partnership.
    ……

  11. Another delurker who wants to send a note of support. I enjoy your blog because it shows someone who is real. I know the blogs that I enjoy are ones like yours – that express how amazingly good life can be along with how surprisingly hard it is.

  12. Just discovered you, just now, through your interview with Finslippy. I loved the interview, loved this post, and am writing a post which includes inspiring things I’m finding while surfing today (because this is the slowest day in the history of slowness!). Thank you, and I’ll be back!

  13. Sending a b i g h u g … make that a B I G H U G …

    I love your writing, whether you’re being witty or mundane or interviewing someone. You are awesomely talented, and its really funny that you wrote this post today, because just before I clicked to go to your blog, I was thinking, like hmmm I wonder how Leah is doing today, and what she’s up to. I don’t need to be entertained by you, I just like getting a little peek at whats goin’ on up there. And I am wildly impressed that you post so prolifically!

    RE what others think this blog should be… to them I say, GET YOUR OWN DAMN BLOG. Those people are what Julia Cameron calls crazymakers. They are people who cannot pursue their own creative dreams and since misery loves company, they are out to make sure you are unable to express your own creative vision.

  14. I wonder if it was a specific person who set you off? Because I’m the same way, blogwise. There’s a pressure to be funny and witty, but then something happens and you’re like ‘I need to write this out’.

    Don’t waste your time validating what you believe is right with this blog. It’s yours and you don’t need to explain it to anyone. If they don’t understand that, then they can go read something else.

    Keep writing! Whatever you want!

  15. I’m always puzzled that there are people who feel as though they can criticize others. Who are these people and who made them blog-god? Clearly they need their own hobbies or some outlet for their general frustration. I know this is easier said than done, but i would just flip the commenter the bird behind their back and move along. f*ck’em. let ’em go write their own blogs and see how many people bother to read them. and of course you should write whatever you want, that’s what a blog is for!

  16. The beauty of blogs (most, anyways) is that they what the owners make them. I don’t think anyone should criticize what anyone else writes. That’s just me, other people would say “you wrote it and put it on the internet, you get what’s coming to you!”.
    I’m always interested in what other people have to say, that’s why I like to read blogs. And that is why you do your blog! It’s great to have you around! Just one more interesting person to get to know.

  17. People read to know they are not alone. (Shadowlands quote) You are clearly “Everyman/Everywoman” to many people Lee. You are the epitome of empathy because you’ve experienced it all and you’re not afraid to let everyone in on it. You’re a catch all spokesperson for humanity. Besides that, you’re my sister, and I love you.

  18. Just be you. The people you attract will be based on you being you. Sometimes I think I may start an anonymous blog because I face the same pressures as you. I’ve deleted more thoughts these days…..my heart is heavy. For you and for me.

  19. Leah,
    Your a beautiful person and it shows in many ways. We cannot be all things, at all times, to all people. We can only be ourselves in the moment. We don’t always get to choose what kind of day we are going to have or what is going on in our life at any given moment. But that is the beauty of writing in a journal/blog. You can express how you feel in that moment. I love your writing and only wish you happy days.

    BTW – I bought your book. I found it to be sad, funny and inspiring all at the same time. Thanks for writing it.

    Lorie

  20. Posts like these remind me what blogging is for me too. You’ve also reminded me how human we all are behind our blogs, and that it *should* be okay for us to talk about what we need to, when we need to.
    Thanks for the great reminder.
    I’ve been a reader since finding your marble magnet set and then trying them for myself – that was fun, thanks, again!
    Take care.

  21. Leah, delurking also to say write what you want. It’s what I come to your site to read – and it’s always wonderful. So keep writing and doing your thing. There are lots of us who’ll keep reading NO MATTER WHAT! – and won’t write you to tell you to write something different.

  22. Wonder why it is that people think they know best for us when they have never looked through our eyes or worn our skin? Keep doing what you do. It’s the right thing.

  23. Just wanted to add my voice to the chorus (sorry I’m late!) of support. You just keep on doing what you’re doing, and know that there’s a lot more love out here than hate. Sometimes hate is just louder. Which is a damn shame. I’m sorry you’re hurting, and wish you happiness and peace.

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