Monday, February 4, 2013

on being known


I spent the weekend at women's retreat sponsered by my church.  We had a wonderful time.  I laughed so much my sides still hurt.  What a blessing it is to laugh and pray with other women.

One of the main ideas our speaker discussed was the importance of investing ourselves in the lives of other women; the importance of letting ourselves be known.  I kept thinking of you, my blogging friends.  Right here; in this place where I hang my heart out in the open for anyone who cares to see, here is where I find myself known.  I kept thinking of the loving generosity with which my ramblings, my questions, my thoughts, my lists, my photographs - my very heart - has been recieved. And I was grateful.

I started this blog nearly five years ago.  I wouldn't have articulated it then, but one of my reasons for jumping in was that I hoped to find a way to not be so invisible.  Have you ever felt that way?  You know what I mean, right?  The way that women can spend their lives with others, work side by side, laugh with them at the lunch table, ask about their kids, even pray together... and still somehow  feel that no one really knows you but your own family.  I know some women who don't even feel seen and known by their family. 

And so, I am extra grateful today.  I am grateful for the family I have, who have always seen and known and loved me.  This family of mine that not only supports, but also loves my blogging habit.   And I am thankful for you.  My far-away friends who stopped by once, and saw something of a kindred spirit in me.  I am thankful for you.  So thankful you decided to stay and to let me be known to you. 

Thank you.

The image above is a close up detail from a painting called "The Record Player" by Karl Hoefer.

25 comments:

Ally said...

Beautifully written. I agree, keep a blog and you make visible to anyone who cares enough to stop by. It's empowering. And a leap of faith!

Suz said...

Oh this was beautiful
and yes, it is so...
many women are invisible...few know them...
But I think it is up to us to reach out in love and make ourselves known and seen...risk
as you have done with your blog and I with mine...
Of course there are things that we keep private...as it should be..
but blogging lets us reveal a side of ourselves that connects with those who are kindred...no wasted time here....
and I connected with you from the beginning, even meeting a wonderful woman named Jennifer through the autumn swap...
Just keep being you and keep sharing.....

Roban said...

You said this so eloquently, Relyn. Some of my friends and acquaintances can't quite understand how I can have "friends" here in the blog world, but I count my friends here nearly as close (and just as close) to me as some of the ones I can see and talk to regularly.

I'm so glad that we met up, you and I. It's a great connection.

S. Etole said...

So glad to have "met" you here.

Marilyn said...

Now this sounds like a retreat I would have enjoyed and yes, you are among my friends here that I feel we have a shared kindred spirit. Thanks for putting these words out, I hadn't thought of blogging in quite that way and some days I do feel like I am not known by those I see face to face.

amelia said...

And we thank you!

Jennifer Richardson said...

I know just what you mean
...blogging gives us a place
to offer and learn to receive openness and acceptance and love
and support in a safe place
where healing happens.
It's such an enormous thing
to find that someone listens
and even responds.
I love this loving community.
thanks for putting into words
what my heart so deeply feels,
Jennifer

christinelaennec said...

Thank you for opening up this space, and yourself, and allowing us to know you Relyn. And for offering us your friendship in return.

A lovely post, very thought-provoking.

Vincy said...

A wonderful perspective that made me thank the Lord for the inspiration you bring forth through this blog.

This post is wonderfully written that even a silent lurker like me couldnt resist leaving a comment here.

Thank you for counting me your friend and keep writing. Love you Relyn and God bless.

cristie said...

thank you for being you. xox

Miko's Girl said...

I blog to become visible, to make my words and stories known. You're words are a breath of fresh air to me.

Mac n' Janet said...

I've never had a lot of friends, personal choice, but the few I have I treasure.
Blogging has opened a whole new world to me and I enjoy knowing others through their words.
It's nice to not be invisible.

Jeanne said...

Love and hugs and we are all so very grateful for you

In the coldest February, as in every other month in every other year, the best thing to hold on to in this world is each other.
Linda Ellerbee, Move On: Adventures in the Real World

Lisa Gordon said...

This is truly so beautifully written, Relyn.
I am so glad that you are here!

krista said...

xo.

Tracy said...

Wonderfully expressed, Relyn! When I began blogging (almost 7 years ago not!) I felt very much the same way. We had moved to a new town, and I was far away from family & friends. Through the years, through my blog, I've been able to find a sweet little community of supportive creative-spiritual friend who I cherish so much. You among them. :o) I think for women especially blogging can be a very powerful and empowering medium for connection and growth. We're so glad you're here! ((HUGS))

Isa Lisboa said...

Yes, i Know what you mean! :)

Marilynne Smith said...

Oh, I know about being invisible. It really ticks me off. On the other hand, it gives me the freedom to be myself. Not what someone else needs me to be.

Friends? They are treasures beyond measure.

Meri said...

I am linking this to Share the Joy for this week -- I think it's a perfect example of Joy, my kindred spirit.

Kim Mailhot said...

You are new to me, Relyn. I have found you through Meri who shared your post at Share the Joy Thursday. I feel a very similar love and gratitude to my Blogland friends. I feel seen, loved and appreciated by these friends, may of whom I know by heart, though not in person.
A beautiful joy to share !
Cheers !

Dee said...

Today I clicked into my blog bookmark with the intention of "gratitude", of giving thanks to everything, esp. everyone, I have...
I see you've left me a sweet comment and come over to see what you've written lately...
And I read this. It is perfect. Exactly what I was thinking in my mind, feeling in my heart...
How often do we all feel the same at the same time...and yet we feel alone. Unseen...
Thank you for giving me this. Today.
XO

{I love the painting, that detail...}

Joanna Jenkins said...

Very well said, Relyn. I think I probably started blogging 4 years ago for the same reason. it's nice to be heard and it's amazing at the warmth and generosity we feel from people around the world that we've never met.

Thanks for the reminder. We all have much to be grateful for in Blogland.

xo jj

deb did it said...

Bloggyhood is the BEST....so many real life friendships have been born from this space. I hear ya Sister!!

Jeanie said...

Oh, my dear friend. You are not invisible. Not to us. You are a bright, shining and beautiful flower. Delicate but strong. Because for so many years I didn't have a regular guy, I learned early about the power of our women friends. Now, even though I have Rick (and he DOES come through), it is my women friends who come through in different ways. A different way of listening without trying to problem solve -- unless you want the problem solved, a way of giving without expectation. And in doing so, you all become known for what you are, for what you carry into this world. Five years, almost? I'm so glad you introduced yourself to a bigger world.

siga said...

True words from the heart! I am really thankful to blogging, and the reasons we do it might be different, but at the end we all appreciated the womanly connections to each other... And the possibility to be ourselves! ;) Greetings

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