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What To Say, What Not To Say

This NaBloPoMo month of writing daily has been much harder for me than it usually is for several reasons, one of which is that I was away from home for two weeks and, rather than scheduling posts ahead of time like I usually do when I know I’ll be gone, I blogged from my phone. Writing daily is the idea of November NaBloPoMo participation, of course, but I’m not sure if I’ve ever gotten through it in the last decade without pre-scheduling a single post.

Oddly enough, I think I have done a better job with much of what I’ve written this year so that’s a good takeaway for me. (I mean, did you SEE my haiku on Sunday?)

We who share personal stories on our blogs have to live life in order to have content, but what about when the life moments that happen aren’t under the umbrella of what we individually deem acceptable topics for public consumption? I’ve had a lot of that lately. While I spend tons of time on social media–though not nearly as much now as I did when I was working–and I know a few people who claim, on the rare occasions I see them in person, that all they need to do to catch up with me is go to my Facebook page, I don’t share everything. I don’t share nearly everything.

Everyone has their own filter strength. Many successful bloggers built their followings on sharing everything, it seems, no holds barred: the good, bad, and ugly. That’s great for them, but it’s just not me. While I’m an extrovert and a generally open person, the online filter I use personally contains the following questions:

  1. Am I going to hurt or embarrass someone by writing about this?
  2. Am I going to regret publishing this later on?
  3. Would I be okay if my (late) grandma were to read this?

Anything I’m about to write has to get a “no, no, yes” to those questions, or it’s off the table. Does that make me “less authentic” if I don’t share everything? Absolutely not. I am the same Melisa in person as I am online. If I’m not writing and posting things that I deem private, I’m also not telling those stories in person to anyone except those who are closest to me.

Doing NaBloPoMo this month has been hard, but there have been some life moments that were harder. Taking some time to recharge and restore my inner glow is an important part of living and writing, and who knows: maybe I’ll post another haiku this week. I could have a future in poetry.

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