Thursday, 28 November 2013

Writing as Me

One of the things that I get anxious about in regards to writing, is the fear that people think I'm representing someone, or something, when I write. I worry that if I have an opinion on a subject, people may automatically assume that my husband holds the same opinion - that I speak for him, or for my family, or my church.

So I've been wanting to do a confessional of sorts, a disclaimer, to make it clear that my thoughts and words are entirely my own. All the posts here are my own thoughts, ideas, and opinions. They don't reflect my family, my husband, or my church. They are uniquely mine. (I think I may have just repeated the same thing often enough now to make my point...) And in order to become a better writer, I need to feel free to write as myself, without fear of offence or misunderstanding.

So in order to do so, and probably just because I'm paranoid, here are some true-for-now statements about myself that inform my perspective and my view of life, and therefore my writing. Some deep, some shallow, but most aren't things that people close with me will necessarily agree with.

In no order particularly:
Source: Pinterest. Illustrator: Caroline Hadilaksono.

1. I love Harry Potter. The books, not so much the movies. I don't think they are evil or lead kids into witchcraft. I read them again, and again, and again. The female characters are some of the best ever written, in terms of role-model quality, and for that reason alone if my children want to read them when they are older (over 11 years I think) I won't be stopping them. I will however use the books as aids to talk about the themes and ideas within and also the issue of the whole witch/wizard thing if needed. My closest family all disagree with me on this one, but there you go.

2. I don't believe hell is a place that God sends people. Just call me your friendly neighbourhood conditionalist. If you have never encountered the idea that this matter was ever up for discussion, check out Rachel Held Evan's Hell series here to learn more. This is not something I ever want to debate, as I don't know my theology well enough, it's not something I'll ever stand head-to-head with another Christian about and argue, it is just a belief of mine in my heart and a place where I feel peace. It is not a central issue to our salvation or our faith, I believe, but it is an issue with evangelism and our modern  evangelism approach. I will never, ever, use hell as an evangelism tool. I believe people should come to Christ for what he has to offer us while alive, for the fullness of joy he gives us, for his unconditional love - for many things - but not because they are afraid of hell.

3. I get overly anxious and worried and am afraid of lots of things. Part of this is post-natal, part of this is childhood, part of this is ENFP overcaring. Telling someone like me "just don't worry about it!" is not that helpful, FYI. Check out this from Buzzfeed: Comics that capture the frustration of anxiety disorders.

4. I don't like exercising. I don't like feeling hot. I hate sweating. And I hate pain. All bad things.

5. I don't force my kids to do what I say "Because I said so". Obedience is not first on my list of parenting values.

6. I would make an amazing Sister Maria. Come one someone, cast me.  You know you want to.

7. I'm not a night person or a morning person. I'm a sleep person. Which makes life with kids near impossible. If I had to choose I am probably more morning than night. But parenting means staying up later than you should just because no one is sitting next to you going "Muum, muuuum, muuuuuum."

8. I really struggle with/hate social media sometimes (a lot of the time). I feel like if I were not on Facebook then I would have no idea what was happening in my friends lives. Because most people don't call, text, or write letters or even emails anymore. They just share everything with their 384 "friends". I miss personal contact and I absolutely treasure the relationships I have with people who text me every so often to check in. I think I need to give what I want to get here too, I need to text and call people, I need to make an effort, if I want people to make one back. So I'm working on that.

9. I judge myself and my life by what I DO way too much. I often count myself as failing or not meeting some high and lofty standard. I need to change. I need to stop saying that I need to change. I need to start saying "I am okay, as I am. I am enough." It is easier to preach stuff to other people than accept it yourself, am I right?

10. I really like the movie "An American Tale 2: Fieval goes west." Don't judge. It's fantastic. Amazing songs. I watched this again and again as a child.

So there you go! That's me. Well, part of me. I represent myself, and I write because I love to. I am going to write here whether people read it or not, because writing helps my soul. And all of the above ten points are probably things that will change and evolve over time, because that is how life goes. Our experiences and our history shifts our perspective, and I am not afraid of that because growth is a good thing. I think I will always love Fieval though...

What about you? Anyone else got stuff they've been afraid to admit?

xx Sarah

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