I’ve been thinking about writing my own blog for awhile now. More than once I’ve begun to sign up on Blogger, Word Press and another site that baffled me from the get go with a name I’ve since forgotten. It’s not that I can’t navigate tech. I can. I worked as a graphic artist after graduating from college in May 1993 until June 2009 when I “retired early” from my job as Art Director. I left advertising feeling burned out and was more broken than I knew at the time. When a friend invited me to join My Opera, I figured, “Why not?” I liked how easy the site was to use from the beginning, though my page has sat here empty for a month. Figured it was time to start…
But where to begin? That’s when some words from childhood came to mind, “Olly Olly Oxen Free”. We’d shout them at the top of our lungs to signal we were done looking in a game of hide and seek. The house I grew up in was nearly the last one on a quiet, dead end street. It was a pale yellow ranch with white shutters and a glorious backyard loaded with mature trees that sloped to the yard behind us. Lots of places to hide. Some more obvious than others. We played forever back there as morning blended into afternoon and afternoon to evening, stopping only to run home for food and meet up again as soon as possible. In the summer we didn’t let the dark of night stop us. We’d grab flashlights and meet outdoors again to play Ghosts in the Graveyard yelling, “Midnight!” to signal we were ready to come lookin’ for you NOW. Such wonderful memories. So many of them overlapping and replaying in my mind.
Now I’m the mom getting the meals, snacks and Keepin’ The Peace when my children are playing with each other and their friends. Sometimes I long to be that young girl running barefoot in the backyard playing with her friends all summer. If only I could go back with what I know now and do it all again. However, life isn’t like that. It doesn’t come with “do overs”. Such a wonderful invention, for a myriad of childhood games, to smooth things over when something is “no fair”. It took all of the Life Experiences between Then and Now to make me who I am. There is no going back. I have to Keep Moving Forward. Each new day is Filled With Promise and The Adventure That Awaits.
In the nearly two years since leaving my Office Job I’ve had time to deal with the introspective Oprah Crap that I hadn’t bothered to face or work through in the busy whirl of takin’ care of my family, workin’ outside the home and livin’ life. It’s hard and it hurts but it’s an important step as I set sail on this New Beginning. I shared the news with people I knew by saying, “I am going to rewrite my To Do list to include things like blowing bubbles, coloring with crayons and spending time with friends”. I also said, “It’s time to begin a new chapter and find out what the next blank page holds”.
Here’s that blank page now. The difference is, I just wrote my first blog post. It’s not as scary as it seemed. Even though I am walking in the dark without a flashlight to guide me. Fair warning though, this time, “olly olly oxen free” means I’m going to stop hiding from myself. Of course, the other thing we shouted, after, “olly olly oxen free” was, “come out, come out, wherever you are.” Those secret places inside me, that I’ve held close, guarded and protected behind tall and sturdy walls with locked gates are going to come out of hiding and be in the light for all to see. I’m going to start from here and see where it takes me. Sometimes starting is the hardest part. No more hiding. Promise.
© 2011, Janean Baird, “Turquoise Tangles”