Dare and Move On – How a Love of Writing Changed My Life
A dozen years ago, I moved with my husband to Miami. I had done this before, moving to another country because of his job. One more time, we decided, and then we will be ready for retirement.
Who would have known we were going to change our minds? Retirement is really not in our plans yet. That is alright. As long as we feel good about our lives, why change them?
Having left my very active life in the Caribbean, the “life of leisure” in Miami was not at all what I expected. The city is hectic, confusing and hardly welcoming. Being used to participating in committees, fundraisers and volunteering for different charities, I discovered that not everything here was easy. It required a lot more effort.
Somehow, I didn’t Dare to start again. So, I decided to write a book about Curaçao, where we lived for 20 years. It was something to occupy my time, help sort out my memories and put life into perspective. Why not? It was Moving On, for sure.
I had such fun with it that I started writing again. I am a journalist in the strictest meaning of the word: I keep journals. Have done since I was young. Somewhere in boxes in my storage space, I have my notebooks, dated and written with blue ink. This is the only way to keep journals, in my view.
Once my book came out, I was advised to start a blog to promote it. Blog? Me? Now that was a challenge if there ever was one. I am technologically challenged. I have had a computer for ages, always an Apple or iMac. User-friendly as they are, they still could confuse me and make me see red. One more thing to occupy my time: learn this new technology that is so necessary nowadays.
Daring again, learn I did. Armed with my new iMac, I launched: “Such is Life in the Tropics”. A simple template, my own photographs, my ramblings about what I have left behind and missed.
It was not the success I was expecting, but it was an eye-opener. I had some followers. People visited and left comments. The back and forth did me good, kept me entertained and taught me to share my thoughts with my readers. Quite an experience!
Finally, I hit 60. What a liberating feeling! Somehow, I was absolutely ready to try something new, to Move On. In a way, I became a different person – or, at least, I felt a different person. Never one for drastic changes, I decided that this was exactly what I needed. A change, but what did this imply? How was I to achieve this and still be myself? Once again, writing came to my rescue. I started another blog. This time I was ready to share what I had learned along the way and what I am still learning. Perfect!
Toss and Listen has been just the thing in my life. Coincidentally, I decided to let my hair go grey. I documented the process, the up and downs, the comments, the visits to the stylist. It was fantastic.
I have Dared to trust myself. The blog has become very important in my life. I have reached out to other bloggers, joined online communities and participated in challenges and received offers to write about certain products.
I have made friends through my blog, something I never would have done otherwise. I had enough friends and making new ones sounded exhausting. Why bother… well, why not? It has been a revelation.
So yes, Dare, that is the only way. It is not a matter of trust vs. control. It’s not a matter of trusting others: it is daring to trust yourself and then moving on. I am so glad I did.
This is a guest post by Mercedes de Marchena.