posted by dave on Monday, October 18, 2004 at 11:17 PM in category ramblings, website

A few weeks ago, I wrote a brief entry about writing a letter that I didn't plan to send.

The gist of that entry was that it felt really freeing to be able to write something without worrying about how the readers of this 'blog would react, and that the whole thing reminded me of my old paper journals in that they represented the real me. The secret me that only I knew.

So freeing, in fact, that I took it one step further and opened up an entire new 'blog, on another site, where I could vent and rant and rave anonymously. A completely separate place that I figured could contain the things that I needed to let out but couldn't in my real 'blog.

So I set up this other 'blog, and started posting.

I started with the letter I mentioned. For the next several days, I put up about an entry per day. I vented to people. I vented about people. Hell, I even wrote a little story about some bullshit that could have happened but didn't because of a butterfly.

It was a very good feeling, that being able to write whatever I wanted without fear of repercussions.

Then I stopped. Here's why:

Reason The First.

These anonymous entries were, to me, better than almost anything I'd ever written in my regular 'blog. I'd get messages from people wanting me to fill in the holes in my story but I couldn't without breaking my cover. And in the end, I found myself letting my public 'blog slip while I let the private one become my main target for expression. When I did make a public entry I became paranoid that I'd be repeating some anonymous entry and someone (you get one guess) would put the pieces together. I didn't like the way things were turning, so that's the first reason I stopped the anonymous 'blog.

Reason The Second.

I was proud of some of that writing and, more than that, I identified with it. Those entries were from the real me, but I was the only one who knew it. In the end I figured that a toned-down public entry was better than a balls-to-the-wall private one. At least with my public 'blog people would know what I was thinking and feeling even if they didn't know how strong those thoughts and feelings were becoming. One of the reasons I write is to help the people in my life understand what's going on in my head, and that wasn't happening. So that's the second reason I stopped the anonymous 'blog.

Reason the Third.

I reached a point where I couldn't write anymore. One night I sat here at my keyboard for what seemed like hours and I was just unable to put together a single coherent thought. There was simply too much emotion and confusion, and reading the entries I'd already posted only made things worse. It was just too personal. I'd been writing things about myself that even I wasn't ready to face. And that's the third reason I stopped the anonymous 'blog and deleted the account.

Why am I dedicating an entry here to a series of entries that no longer exists in a journal that no longer exists?

Because today I got this e-mail:

Hi Dave,

I know you probably still want to be anonymous but I wanted you to know that the things you wrote and the feelings you've been having are nothing to be ashamed about. The thing's you?re going through are tough. I see that even more now that I've read your real journal. They're tough but we all go through these things. I know I have, and reading the things you wrote made me realize that I wasn't alone either. I think you expressed yourself very well and you even made me cry several times!

I don't think you should hide. I think you should keep writing about what you're feeling and just let the chips fall as they say.

Even if you don't take my advice I hope you'll at least keep writing because I want to know what happens next.

I feel like I've gotten to know you a little bit by reading all of your journal and I think you must be a pretty cool person.

(name withheld by Dave)

So it seems that I wasn?t as careful as I'd thought. Now I get to be even more paranoid than normal.

I appreciate what she wrote. A part of me even agrees with her that maybe I should be a little more forthcoming in my entries.

But I don't think it'll happen. I may have learned to open up quite a bit since I started writing this 'blog a little over a year ago but I haven't opened up that much. I still have restraint, and that's probably a good thing since I'm not the only person that might be affected by some of my more honest ramblings.

So I don't think I'm quite ready to unleash myself on the world, but I will keep writing.

I am a pretty cool person, and I want to know what happens next too.

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