Today hubby and I went on our first “long” training ride of the 2012 bike season. Our friend and fellow Guido’s Goon teammate Bill (we ride together in the MS150) convinced us that riding 40+ miles on this unseasonably pleasant and uncharacteristically not windy day would be a good idea. Although I wasn’t thrilled with the suggested itinerary because 1) I didn’t really feel like riding at all, much less 40 miles, and 2) I hadn’t made it over 19 miles since I started riding on the bike trainer a month ago, I caved because even though I hated to admit it I knew I could handle it.
As we rode along, Bill was talking to me about my blog, which he actually reads. He mentioned that he’s learned a lot about me by reading what I write. I thought about this for a few seconds. Then I made the most ludicrous statement I’ve made in a while.
“Truth is that I consider myself to be a very private person.”
Now, Bill was riding in front of me at that point so I couldn’t see his facial expression after I said that, but I imagine he was fairly amused by my comment. Because…seriously? Who publishes a blog because they’re intensely private? I write about my life, my family, my struggles, my neuroses, and my fears, and I put it on the Internet. I must be certifiable to think I’m private or reserved at all.
For the rest of the ride, I tried to discern what part of me is private if I’m publishing my life on the Internet. If I look at it solely from that angle, I’m not private in any way. So, how is it possible that I still believe I am? Here’s how: I write for myself. Every entry I publish is simply an attempt to figure out what is going on in my busy mind, a way to find some measure of peace. I never write about things I consider to be truly personal and private. There are numerous things in my life I would never discuss on my blog. I write about the human condition or about topics that amuse me. Finally, I suppose I feel private because I forget that people might actually read what I write. I don’t publish to be read. I publish to put a period on my work, to finish what I start, to put it out there and move on.
I know it seems crazy to imagine that I maintain some level of privacy in my life when I toss it onto the Internet but, honestly, I don’t know if it’s possible to know me by reading the sum total of what I spew on a blog either. Perhaps that’s why I still feel protected, safe, and private. My blogs are all me, but they are not all of me.