I’ve been away from my blog for well over a week now. It’s been a challenging week. I recently read a blogger refer to her days as either “Green Light,” “Yellow Light” or “Red Light” Days. She uses this as a communication system with loved ones. When the inevitable, “How are you” pops up, she can respond with the appropriate stop light… indicating: “Not too bad, proceed ahead,” “Rocky road ahead, proceed with caution” or “STOP! Body under repair, do not enter!” Well, I’ve just come off a string of “Red Light Days.”
But after this rocky week, I returned to my blog to discover that I had been awarded not one, but three Blogger Awards!! This is a huge honor and I am humbled by this gesture. Not only was this a surprise in and of itself, but I received these awards from a blogger I wasn’t previously aware of. Someone who just recently discovered my blog, and was so touched that she chose me for one of her ten nominations. Remarkable.
After the initial shock at receiving these awards faded, I started to buckle under pressuring thoughts: “What did I do to deserve these?” and “What will my next ‘inspiring’ entry be to live up to these nominations?!”
I forgot to stay in the moment and just feel the happiness and hope over receiving these awards. To know that I have touched others as they have touched me is the true reward. Especially coming form a new-to-me blogger… the “silent” readers who find comfort and connection in my words.
And, in the end, isn’t that the point of blogging? Not to feed my own ego or to feed others; but to grow roots in a community of like-minded, supportive people.
When ecologists look beneath the surface of a forest floor, they discover an interconnected web that holds up the entire colony of trees. One tree cannot stand alone (for long)… it needs its forest. Just as I tried to stand alone with my own shallow roots for far too long; I was afraid to reach out my branches for help and to admit my daily struggles with chronic illness and pain.
Thanks in large part to the blogging community, I no longer feel alone. Unlike Darwin’s theory of “survival of the fittest,” plants in a forest system do not survive individually. They actually help each other survive. They will share nutrients back and forth according to who needs it the most at any given moment. And they will help each other withstand unexpected events (storms, fires, disease). They do not discriminate; they help each other “inter-species.”
Not only do we provide a root system for one another, I feel like we all play the role of ecologist, as well. We look beneath the surface (the “
oh, but you look so good on the outside…”) to get to the root of things that lie beneath. We accept each other (as I like to say, “warts and all”). We trust each other. We believe in each other.
And when one of us is too weak to weather the next inevitable storm, we hold each other up. One day I hold you up, and the next day you return the gift with encouraging, validating words of kindness. We remind each other why we need to stand strong and try again one more day at a time… why we should never give up.
Ecologist Suzanne Simard states, “AMAZINGLY, WE FIND THAT IN A FOREST, 1 + 1 EQUALS MORE THAN 2.” Isn’t that also true of the WordPress Family?! (and our supportive readers!)
In my heart, these blogging awards are for each and every one of us; for every blogger who has the courage to tell it how it is, to be vulnerable, and to stand in their own truth. I wouldn’t be here without all of you. And I wish I could nominate all of you in turn…
I have been instructed to nominate 10 bloggers to pass these awards on to. I want to be thoughtful in my choices… to recognize others as well as to give everyone an opportunity to explore a blogger they may not yet have discovered on their own. As well, I want to think of the introspective questions I have been asked (as a nominee) and post those separately so you can get to know me even better.
In the meantime, I want to sincerely thank Life Beyond My Window (click for link) for passing these awards on to me. And for giving me the opportunity to discover another inspirational blog!