I recently ran into a guy I worked with at Wild Water West when I was 16. It was cool catching up… Okay, 100% truth is what I’m all about here, so to be honest it was also kinda awkward, but whatever. He mentioned my blog briefly, and for a second I was stunned. I got hot and sweaty and my immediate reaction was, “Shit, shit, shit, what does he think about my crazy?” I didn’t really know what to say because it was the first time someone mentioned my blog outside of the technological world. So for some reason my instinctive response was, “Oh, I didn’t even know we were still friends on Facebook.” And then I totally panicked and changed the subject back to a part in the conversation that was long gone. Real cool, Rachael… But timing is everything, and right then some older lady came up and put her arms around him and told me he was sexy. And oddly enough that wasn’t nearly as awkward as the blog situation. It’s true what they say – not all heroes wear capes. Thanks for saving the day, homegirl. (Trent, if you’re reading this now, heyyy! Sorry I made it weird that day.)
Anyway, I had a revelation that if someone I hadn’t talked to in over 10 years was reading my blog, a lot more people like him could be reading it too. I see that people I don’t even know are following my blog (they might be bots though, I’m not entirely sure). Why this obvious thought didn’t occur to me before that instant, I do not know. I’m glad that I didn’t think that far ahead, or else I doubt I would have started my blog.
All in all, I’m glad people (you) are reading. People since that day have brought my blog up to me sometimes in conversation. I’m shocked that I’m not more uncomfortable when they bring it up. Like, I can be more myself in those situations, because these people know what’s up… kinda. It’s cool knowing that my words have an impact on people. It’s scary at the same time knowing that I’m voluntarily airing out my dirty laundry (and I’ve got baskets full) to these people (to you).
I think the thing that makes me feel self-conscious about sharing my life with you has nothing to do with the vulnerability that comes along with it. The discomfort has nothing to do with sharing my mistakes, or the facts you will come to learn about me. What makes me self-conscious about sharing my life is simply what you will think of me. There is a level of judgment that comes along with being vulnerable. I try to make myself blind to it. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve gotten so much better at not caring what people think (I truly believe that it comes with time). But the more I put myself out there, the more I open myself up to judgment. The self-conscious part of me asks, “What are people saying about me? What do these people think of me? Should I really be putting myself out there like this?”
Regardless, I do know that I’m doing what I’m supposed to be doing right now. It feels right. I may be crazy for doing it, but I know that I’m doing more good than harm by sharing my life with you. The realistic part of me also knows that I am way more capable of failure and looking like a fool by putting myself out there. I was always one to play it safe for fear of failure. That’s why I wasn’t going to start my blog until everything was exactly how it was supposed to be. From my home office being finished, to my life being put back together, to knowing how to even start a blog….basically I was waiting until the next Hocus Pocus movie came out (those of us that aren’t living in denial know that it’s never going to happen). None of these things have been accomplished, yet here I am. Like I’ve said before, fear of failure is laughable compared to the shit I’ve been through. It’s cliché, but once I realized that life isn’t guaranteed, I knew that I had to start, and I’m glad I did. It is scary. But I’m going to keep making myself vulnerable to you, regardless of what you may think about my crazy.
Anyway, thanks for reading.