The heart of the onion

I have written before about the nature of blogging and whether or not it would have been better to have been an anonymous blogger rather than one who was easy to find. There have been people critical of what I write and those who question my motivations. I’ve been told by some that I blog to make myself seem like a good guy, but no matter that I deny it, there seems to be a belief that I have some hidden agenda, or that I am somehow trying to be manipulative.

So what is the issue with the blog. Why is it so confronting? Is it the fact that in writing and exposing myself the way I have in the writing, that the people who know me are seeing an aspect they haven’t seen before? Does it feel to them that they are reading the words of a person they thought they knew but didn’t? This blog is about how I feel, how I am coping with the issues relating to the people around me. I suppose that there may well be that feeling of reading about an alien for the people who know me, simply because I have not outwardly talked about feelings or expressed frailties and human qualities before.

It is confronting for me too to think that so few, if any, people really knew me. Someone said to me recently that in expressing my foibles and talking about my mistakes that it is almost like a confession in the religious sense, and that those of you who comment are almost like the priests who take the confessions. That in offering me support it is like having the confession accepted and that it appears that the support is leaving me to walk away without the guilt and avoiding the consequences of my mistakes.

I actually don’t think that is the case but I am prepared to say that the person who writes this blog is perhaps different to the public persona. It’s not a deliberate deception, probably not even a conscious one, if it is a deception at all.

I also had someone ask me about the readers of the blog, and in particular about those of you who comment. And I said that many of you also have fragilities that you reveal on your blogs but that are not necessarily the same as the ones you reveal to the people you know in the real world. I was asked how I knew that what you said and revealed was the truth, and my reply was that I just know it is. I said that it was like interviewing a crook, sooner or later if lies are being told, the inconsistencies will trip those people up. Similarly, where you talk about the pain and passion of your lives, there are things that ring true to me. I can tell when you are really hurting, when past tragedies have shaped present lives, where hopes and dreams are revealed in all their wonder.

That is not to say that in our writing we are totally naked. Sometimes there are things held back, hidden doors that remain closed to everyone.

Reading a personal blog is like being invited into someone’s house. Sometimes we stand on the doorstep and peer inside seeing a glimpse of a room. Perhaps on the first visit we may not get past the loungeroom, but as we become more comfortable and visit more often, we may start to explore the different rooms.

Each post on a blog is another room, and as we read them a little more of the writer is revealed. Perhaps there are sometimes things we see in the visits that we would rather not know, at other times there are things that delight or educate us. If you don’t mind me mixing my metaphors let me say that each post is like peeling another layer from the onion and if we keep going we will one day get to it’s heart.

So when you come into my house, do not judge me too harshly. If for some reason you do not like what you see then you need not come back. When you do though, perhaps you should be prepared to learn a little more about me each time. One day perhaps you will be comfortable here and rather than feel confronted or affronted by what you read you will look forward to the visits.

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