You may or may not have noticed, but it’s been over a year since I blogged here. I haven’t been altogether silent, though. I have written about my travels, and I regularly post photos. But focusing on this blog, well, not so much.
And there are a couple of reasons for this: vulnerability and hubris. And both are inextricably linked.
Being a reasonably popular blogger (and by this, I mean that I don’t have a huge numbers of readers, but those who do subscribe and read tell me they enjoy it), I felt a certain sense of untouchableness (that’s not a word, but it suits the point I’m trying to make). I felt that I could write about things here, namely work things, and be safe because I was being authentic. I thought the public domain was my armour. I was wrong.
I won’t go into details, but suffice it to say, I was in a very bad place work-wise then. I wrote about it as a way to make sense of it all, and also perhaps, as a way to validate what I was experiencing in the public domain. I thought there was safety in posting publicly, but I was wrong. My musings were not perceived that way, and I was
silenced shut down*.
I learned a valuable lesson: this blog might have been called The Diane Lee Show, but I was not Oprah. I didn’t have an army of lawyers and journalists and lobbyists on tap to come into bat for me. I was one woman with limited resources, who needed to learn an important lesson about picking the ditches she was going to die in. Yes, there is inequality in workplaces; yes, people are treated unfairly; and yes, the wrong people are in power. But realistically, there is little I can do about it. They say light is the best disinfectant, but is it really up to me to open the shades? I need to think about my own self-preservation. Repeat after me: it is not your job to teach other adults how to behave (unless, of course, you are being paid a lot of money to do so).
Because unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on how you look at it) I am the sole breadwinner in my family. I can’t pass the baton to someone else and say: “I’m taking some time out. Your turn for a while.”. And I’ve got other things I’d prefer to spend my time and energy on: travel, photography, running. Things that are worthy of my energy. Things that give me an excellent return on investment. Things that are worth dying in a ditch for.
So the point of this post? Well, it’s to tentatively dip my toes in the blogging water and see how it feels. And kind folks like Yummy Lummy and Bookabyebaby have been asking me when I’m going to start blogging again. In preparation some months back, I changed the name of my blog to The Diane Lee Project as a constant Note To Self reminder that I am not Oprah. I am a work in progress. I have not arrived: I may never get there.
So where do I want to take this blog? To be honest: I don’t know. What I do know is I want to write. I am good at it, and I shouldn’t disrespect a gift by not using it. I know I want to write about the world as I see it and interpret it and live in it, certain ditches not withstanding. I know that my voice is important, not least for the legacy I leave my children and their children and their children’s children. So, knowing all these things, I will continue to write, and like the rest of my life, I don’t have a plan, I’ll enjoy the journey.
* I won’t go into how I was shut down. It’s enough to say that what transpired was unpleasant enough to encourage my compliant silence, which was always the end game.