One Year of Blogging – and Still Thankful
We pass many life milestones through the years and, at each one, we tend to not only measure our progress, but also measure ourselves against them. Like me, now, with blogging: I look at the numbers after one year of writing here, on Divine Incarnate, and I feel like I don’t measure up, like I have fallen short.
One year ago, on the feast of Christ the King, I made an act of consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus and began this blog as a way of publicly recording my private reflections, thus consecrated. I chose to use WordPress because I saw that there was an active community of readers and fellow bloggers here. Yes, I wanted my blog to be read and I even had the ambition of gaining 50 followers within a year. Becoming more familiar with other people’s blogs, I saw that the number 50 was modest, and, so, I began hoping for 100. I’m very happy to have reached this modest goal – reaching the exact mark on my anniversary, no less! But, I’m still very much aware that some other bloggers at the one-year milestone have thousands of followers, many likes per post, and ongoing comments from committed readers. I, on the other hand, will rarely get more than four likes for a post and even just one comment. For these reasons, I do not consider myself a successful blogger. 
And, yet, I am so very grateful.
I am not sharing my lack of blogging success here because I want pity likes, pity comments, or pity follows. Please, no! I’ve never liked pity – it’s one of the reasons that, prior to this blog, I rarely shared my private life publicly. Rather, I share my feelings about blogging dissatisfaction because, as I mark this milestone, I want to write, not about being measurable and, therefore, pitiable – but about being grateful. And, whether I ever become a successful blogger or not, I am grateful for this opportunity to share my thoughts, experiences, emotions, reflections – to share myself with a wider circle of human beings. For, God knows, “It is not good for man to be alone…”. Rather, it is good for us to need each other, so that, in helping one another, we may better become who we are meant to be: human beings in relationships of communion and love.
I Am Thankful for…
I am thankful for the human beings in my life, especially my family. For I have always known that I am loved – and, sadly, not everyone in this world can say that. Too many people live and die without ever knowing that they are loved by another human being. Love is the richest treasure, the most powerful balm, the deepest joy, the greatest gift – the whole reason that there is life at all. And because I am so physically dependent on others, because I need so much help in my daily life, I know – through my parents’ daily care, through their generous, sacrificing gift of themselves to me – that I am wanted. I have never been in doubt that I am lovable, that I belong, that I am worthy of the wonder that is life, and that I, myself, am a wondrous good. (And isn’t that what we all want?) For this reason, any lack of measurable success in the world cannot reduce my sense of self-worth and joy. My soul will ever sing joyfully in gratitude.
The song of my soul is in my writing – and for the gift of writing, I am also ever grateful. I write. This doesn’t mean that I publish or that I sell. Since I was eight years old, I have seen myself as a writer. And since I was 12 years old, writing has been what I do. The act of writing is enmeshed in my being, my identity. When I could no longer physically write with my hand or type out words through the computer, I turned to the dictation system that I’m using now to process and express my thoughts, emotions, and experiences through words. I write. And I always will, even when I no longer have breath enough to speak out the words that are in my mind and in my heart. The words will always be there, my soul’s gift… from God and to God….
Sharing what I write here, on this blog (I’ve never liked that word, by the way) my intention has been to be less shy, less isolated, less caught up in “writing for myself”. I’m not trying to sell books that I’ve authored, or invite others into partaking of a particular ministry, or write myself out of a destructive habit – all of which are very good, legitimate, and valuable reasons to write a blog. I simply want to be who I am everywhere.
For so much of my life, perfect strangers have come up to me and told me that I am an inspiration – simply because I look so physically devastated in my wheelchair and, yet, genuinely laugh and smile. There is a light inside of me, it seems, that shines out to others – and I don’t believe that I’m supposed to keep that light under a bushel basket. This does not mean that I believe that I am writing this blog for the benefit of others. No. I write because I have to, because that’s who I am – and I share these writings here and now with you, dear reader, because it is the full extension of who I am. The sun has to shine, the rain must fall, and the wind must blow – if they did not, they would not be what they are. Human beings must love – we have to freely give of ourselves to others someway, somehow, in order to be truly and fully human.
And so, whether my blogging is ever measured a success or not, you have read my words here and a human connection has been made, no matter how fleeting– and all is right with the world.
So, I thank you!
© 2014 Christina Chase
 photo credit http://nourishingwords.net/2011/04/25/mud/
 Genesis 2:18 Douay-Rheims translation
Christina Chase View All
Although crippled by disease, I'm fully alive in love. I write about the terrible beauty and sacred wonder of life, while living with physical disability and severe dependency. A revert to the Catholic faith through atheism, I'm not afraid to ask life's big questions. I explore what it means to be fully human through my weekly blog and have written a book: It's Good to Be Here, published by Sophia Institute Press.
Be patient with your blogging ‘success’ – You are ahead of me, and I, for myself prefer to take it slow and easy, as I discover my blogging self… I actually had another blog, under a pen name for many years, and one day realized I wanted to blog with my own name, so much so, that I couldn’t write anymore since my pen name had become undesirable to me. So I made the switch, new blog with my own name. I had to start all over again. This time I am going it slowly, have much less followers, but am not in a hurry. What will be will be! I look forward to reading your blog- and watching it grow 🙂
Thank you for your words of encouragement and wisdom! (Words are so important…)You wrote “take it slow and easy, as I discover my blogging self” and I was nodding yes, yes! That’s something that I just began noticing: “my blogging self”. I’ve kept a journal since I was a teenager, not just about daily personal things, but also about culture and society – art, politics, ethics, spirituality, and religion. I thought that this blog of mine would be about grand things, but I find that sharing myself with the greater world (no matter how small that world might be) is a very personal experience.
I have only just discovered your blog and I’m enjoying it very much! Sometimes “followers” don’t faithfully follow blogs – but you have gained a faithful follower in me, as I will be continually going back to your site to read more of your words, whether it’s your poetry, your exploration of the poet’s mind, or your questions about whether or not you should watch less television or no television at all (I’ve wondered that so many times myself!) I feel very much at home on your blog. And you introduced me to Catholic Lane, too, so thank you!
Thanks Christina for Divine Incarnate – I look forward to each writing. I am so out of my element when it comes to this blogging thing. I only know that I find your writings extremely loving, satisfying & insightful. I am in awe and at times feel so unworthy. I’m still learning how my faith develops and your writings are an inspiration, insightful & helpful. Thank you again.
It is I who thank you, Don! Truly! I was felt so humbled when you told me that you were reading my posts. For your openness and your kind words, I am grateful. We are all, unworthy though each and every one of us is, little lambs in the arms of the Shepherd, pilgrims on the journey, students of the Teacher, learning together how our discipleship will develop and our faith will grow in the love of God.