Friday, February 4, 2011

Hesitant to blog…Then, a change of heart

Six months. One half of a year. Has it really been six months since my last blog entry? It has, hasn’t it?

No, I didn’t decide to take a spontaneous trip to Antarctica, nor did I choose to renounce all worldly possessions. There were many decently justifiable reasons for my hiatus. Allow me to explain:

1) My blog is public, and I was unsure for a long while as to whether or not I wanted it to remain that way. I’m exposing myself for the world to see—for better or for worse.

2) I can realistically only share a fraction of my true experience through an online, public blog—many things get lost in translation or misunderstood while writing for such a vast, anonymous audience.

3) I got busy, life happened.

4) I wasn’t sure how much exposure or unsolicited publicity I wanted to give my community or individuals. I feel an obligation to respect and represent my community appropriately and my words and photos must reflect that.

5) I was not finding a balance. If I spend enough time to accurately and adequately express my experiences in a series of blogs, I’ve already spent too much time here and not enough in my community.

6) Let’s throw a bit of laziness into the pot.

That about covers what was going through my mind.

Well, what changed, Matson?

I spent some time back at home in Minnesota for these past holidays. After a year and a half of not seeing friends or family, this was a great and needed vacation. I got to meet newborn family members; I got to see some of my favorite ones growing up; and I got to create, rekindle, expand and rebuild important relationships with those closest to me in my life .

While at home, time and time again, family and friends approached me and said how much they’ve enjoyed reading my blogs and seeing my photos. For that, I am truly grateful and humbled. And I couldn’t help but feel rather guilty for not keeping up with it, like I was letting them down. I realized that if I wanted to just keep a journal of happy memories, I could just keep this to myself, or write personal emails now and again. But obviously, I have a specific intention for this blog and I need to regain that focus. What I’m trying to say is, that during my three weeks home, I realized the impact of my communication with those of you back in America. I realize that not only do I have an obligation to those I live with in my community here, but there’s an unspoken responsibility to maintain and update all of you who take time to read my words.

Blogs, at least for me, often leave this impression in my mind in that they’re a way to vent or ramble on about mundane aspects of life (let’s not get started on the (ab)use of serial status updating on a certain social network). But really, they’re an opportunity to give more than 160 characters worth of your thoughts, feelings, and opinions.

We’ve been given (or some would say we created…who gets the credit is up to you) these great tools to communicate and we are able to do so at a rate and ease far greater than ever before. From written language, then the printing press, then telecommunication, and now the internet. It’s an incredible time for those in our generations.

“With great power comes great responsibility.”

This quote may be a bit cliché, but the truth when put into context of communication is that complex language and communication is one significant thing that separates us from other animals; we have the power to do something great with it.

Next question is: now that we’ve got this vast resource of knowledge, what do we do with it?

“Knowledge is knowing something; wisdom is knowing what to do with it.”

Social networks and blogs are great to get the word out, from tweeting to “liking” to blogging about what’s happening around the globe. But how do we make this tidal wave of daily information useful? How do we digest it and make these words do work? Or do we just say to ourselves, hm, that’s neat, then move on to the next insatiable news feed? Talk is cheap, but truly communicating with responsibility is not. It takes time, effort, direction and purpose.

So…? Get to your point, Matson.

Okay, okay. (Gosh, no need to be so pushy.) My point is this: I will try to bring you more blogs, more photos and more experiences. I’m not, however, going to waste my time writing or your time reading some half-butted (sorry for the profanity) attempt just to keep the blog quota high. It’ll be words and photos I’m proud to post and share with you, Mr. and Mrs. Blogreader.

And with that, I’ll leave you with a recent photo of the neighbor kids. ◊ Salang Sentle—Stay Well

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1 comment:

  1. and check out that rainbow! Thanks for sharing! Patti