Don’t Be Afraid to Tell Your Story

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I’m disappointed.

Earlier this year, I wrote a post about something that happened in my life. It would be silly to try and deny that I was nervous and fearful about sharing it. I knew it would shake people and ruffle feathers.

For two years I’d held on to my story, afraid to tell it.

Ultimately, on that post, there were two unsupportive commenters (and several people who ‘unfriended’ me). One had a confrontational tone, whose intention, I imagine, was meant to embarrass me. I easily shrugged that one off.

But it was the second one that, months later, I still find myself pondering and tossing around in my mind.

I was told that some things do not belong on blogs and that my post was one of those things.

My story had no place on a blog. Even my own blog.

…insert long pause…

I had many thoughts about that comment and still do, because ultimately, the post wasn’t just about telling that particular story, but about the fear that I felt in writing it.
In telling my own truth.
My story.

And why?

Because… I was afraid that it would make others angry at me.
Or not like me.

{hate me.}

Do you know what?

Out of the hundreds of emails, comments, texts, tweets and phone calls I received, all but those two were able to relate in some way and applaud me for having the courage to write what I did.

Despite my fear.

Some of those people may not have even agreed with what I wrote; I don’t know… But they supported my right to tell my story and didn’t try to make me feel badly about doing so.

Why?

Because it was my story to tell.

From my perspective.
About my own experience.
Through self-examination.

When all was said and done, the story wasn’t even about what that commenter implied and was pissed off about. But rather it was about sharing something so that others could maybe… hopefully… learn from something I’d experienced.

I will always shake my head at that comment. But I will continue to tell my stories.

Despite the feathers they may ruffle or the way people may be made uncomfortable.

Not everything looks pretty from every angle, but everyone has a right to tell their own story.

And you should tell your own.
Without fear.
Without anxiety.

Unless you are making up your stories and selling them as ‘truth’.

In that case… you’re on your own.

photo credit

Announcing The Extreme Blog Makeover Giveaway: Summer Edition

extremeblogmakeover

Karen of Simply Amusing Blog and Simply Amusing Designs and I have teamed up to offer two lucky readers a very special prize.

Do you know a deserving blogger who desperately needs a blog makeover? Perhaps it’s you? Blog your most compelling story as to why you think this person deserves a blog makeover and then send us your link. We’ll choose 10 semi-finalists and let you have the deciding votes for the two finalists on Blissfully Domestic!

The Extreme Blog Makeover team could be coming to your blog soon!

Contest Rules:

:: Blog your most moving story about why you or someone you know deserves a blog makeover and link up at Blissfully Domestic on Wednesday, July 30th by midnight EST.

:: If it’s not your blog, please provide links to the blog to be made-over somewhere in your entry.

:: We will choose 10 finalists and post the links to their stories here.

:: Reader voting will begin August 1st and end Monday, August 4th.

:: The two blogs that have received the most reader votes will be declared the winners – so make your stories good!

:: The winning blogs will enter each designer’s queue and depending on the size of their queue, may have to wait up to 4 weeks, but hey! It’s a gift from us to you!

::You can check out our work at Fruition Designs and Simply Amusing Designs!

Grab our button and help spread the word!

That’s my girl

Right now I am listening to my daughter play in her bedroom with her brother and a friend. They’ve been playing “grownup” all morning (in between coloring and drawing; I suppose we all need to take breaks from being grownups once in a awhile).

But as I was straightening the kitchen I heard the following conversation:

Abbie: Where is my [toy] computer? I can’t find my [toy] computer!

(:::shudders::: the horror!!!)

Quinn: What do you need it for?

(silly silly boy; must you even ask such a thing?)

Abbie: I must check my blog! I’ve got some important things to write down for my blog!

(be still my heart; I AM teaching her well, after all)

Computer was found – potential life-scarring event averted and she began tapping out some sort of story of recent events.

NOT an episode of Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous

Two years ago this week, we moved to Tennessee. We were bursting with excitement! and anticipation! because we were just coming off of what has come to be dubbed “our really!! really!! really!! bad year”.

Clean slate.
Fresh start.

We had previously put all of our things into storage, except clothing, some books and toys and an air mattress. Long story short, we had had to move in with my in-laws while we got back on our feet. So, when we moved to Tennessee, that was all we had with us. We moved here with a job for Sean and that was it. Not even a place to live. We like livin’ on the edge.

We stayed with my grandmother, who lives two hours away, and then drove to Nashville each day to look for an apartment. As if a 4 hour round trip wasn’t expensive enough, we were doing it together, but in two separate trucks. In an act that had to have been a final remnant of our really!! really!! really!! bad year, my car had broken down right before we moved and we couldn’t afford to fix it. Because the kids couldn’t stay with my 92 year old grandmother she would have run them ragged, they were lucky enough to be escorted around Middle Tennessee for hours and hours at a time.

We had put a lot of prayer into our apartment search – we weren’t even familiar with the area and didn’t know what was where. In fact, the last time I had been to Nashville was a trip to Opryland way back in the 70s and the only time Sean had been was when he came for his interview, 2 weeks before.

Like I said, we like livin’ on the edge were coming off of a really!! really!! really!! bad year.

Our biggest issue, aside from cost, was, if we could move into it rightthisveryminute because we are living out of our trucks with three kids. We did find a place, and it has suited us fine. Granted, we don’t have a yard, but it really is comfortable. In fact, when I hear people who have fewer kids than us (we now have four) complaining about running out of room in their big homes, I get a bit confused…

Oh, right… I was telling you a story about our move…

We had to move in that weekend so that Sean could start his job the following Tuesday.

This was how things looked for the first month we lived in Tennessee:

<<air mattress over here              tv over here >>

So so so so easy to keep clean. Seriously – want a clean house? Get rid of your stuff.

Sean was finally able to get back to Maryland to move our things the beginning of March. In fact, I wrote about my excitement in my very first blog post. We didn’t waste any time getting our umbilical cord to the world computer set back up.

From that point on, I have fought a losing battle. Dirt and clutter:730 days – Karla: 0.

When I do get it straightened, it takes about 8 minutes for it to look like this:

That’s me on the couch – resigned to a life of clutter

the only clean spot in my house

When I get frustrated about it, I have to stop and remember where we were, and from where we’ve come. The clutter and the mess mean that we have been blessed with our children, a roof over our head and stuff.

Though don’t think I don’t fantasize about this once in awhile:

Have you heard about this movie?

So much focus has been placed on the Golden Compass, that this movie could get overshadowed.

It’s a story of forgiveness and second chances and has the story of our Savior’s birth right at the center of it.

Visit the site here. (Noelle – the movie)