When I first began blogging in November of 2006, it was only after a couple months of blog voyeurism. I was constantly peeping in anonymously at the blogs of a few college friends, silently admiring their ability to share and express in so public a sphere. It only occurred to me a couple months later that I could start my own. When I finally started lattes & rainy days [after a day or two of agonizing over what my blog should be titled and then over whether I had anything blogworthy to publish], it was primarily as a way of reconnecting with those friends from college, hearing about weddings, seeing pictures of their growing babies, being reintroduced to them in their everydays, and welcoming them into my own.
And now it has become something so much fuller and more rewarding than I ever expected it to be; I have reconnected with old friends and formed new connections that are soul-deep and life-transforming. I have been stunned by the perceptions and insights of those who, whether or not they've met me, somehow get me, know me from the inside out. It is utterly disarming to be confronted with the reality that someone else has shared your doubts, fears, questions, and not only doesn't judge you or look down on you for it, but offers ways of looking at at the whole sweep of things that you hadn't thought of before. These are people who offer themselves with transparency and honesty, and in doing so, gift me a gift unlike any other. In short, these are people that give me a glimpse at the face of God.
Little things [like blogs] in the hands of a great big God ... this is nothing I have created, but something that has been handed to me, this amazing gift I treat with great care as something precious that I don't want to break.
There are so many I can think of who I could recognize and who would be deserving of such recognition; much of my blogroll, in fact. But if I consider who I've leaned on most, who has provided more support than I'd dare ask for, who act as a mirror for me, who have unabashedly offered me the gifts of themselves, who offer me a glimpse at the face of God, and encompass all those things described above, then the answer is obvious: I am passing the love on to Christianne and Terri: never were more kindred spirits found. Both fast friends, writers and artists, tender-hearted and humorous, honest, beautiful women who manage to understand me when all I offer is a confused spew of words usually followed up by "you know?" or something equally intelligent. These are two people for whom I weep with gratitude, who have come alongside when I needed it most, who add fuel to my fire.
Others who most definitely make my day (and fit all those descriptions as described in the second paragraph):
23 Degrees: Insightful, humorous, honest. So perceptive and encouraging, often giving me the gift of words where my own have failed me.
Nathan: As raw and real a person as you'll ever meet; honest, terribly insightful, and one heck of a writer.
Carl: Always ready with a thoughtful word and frequently lightens my day with his humor.
I am delighted to know you all!
P.S. Have you noticed that it's less than 2 weeks until I go to Florida to visit Christianne?!!?