This is How I Do It

So much of what I write here is different than it used to be.

I’m different than I used to be.

When I started this thing in January 2012, it was mainly to explain the special-needs family to people who know us. It became therapeutic to write openly about things that were hidden, difficult, unsolvable. Writing has always held an element of fun for me, too. Even when it was hard, there were rewards.

In the last six-ish months, though, there has been a change. If you read¬†this blog regularly, you may have noticed a shift toward spiritual things. Spirituality is at the core of my life. For me, it is the point. It’s the hope and the meaning and the guidebook.

Spiritual things were there before when I wrote, but perhaps not so much embraced as they are now. By me. I don’t know how other people receive them. I assume if they don’t like the subject matter, they stop reading.

I mean this with the utmost respect, so please do not take offense when I say this: it doesn’t matter to me who likes it and who reads it. Which is to say, I don’t write for myself anymore. Nor do I write for a specific audience (which is what I drill into my students’ psyches, but whatever).

It’s of my hands. Let me explain.

Here’s how it happens:

  1. Something happens to me. Often it’s wild. Complete crazytown.
  2. I wonder why it’s happening, because duuuuuude.
  3. Even as it’s happening, in a back corner of my brain I am already writing about it. Mentally composing the Thing into sentences. I know. I was just born this way.
  4. Time separates me from the wild Thing that happened, giving me perspective.
  5. I feel a spiritual urgency to write the Thing down, along with commentary, because it IS my life yo.
  6. I write and hit “publish.”
  7. Then I edit, because after the Thing is published, all the grammatical errors suddenly appear.
  8. I revise. I hit “update.”
  9. And I feel a sense of having done my duty. Meaning, whoever reads it and loves/hates/is neutral toward/inspired by/annoyed by/weirded out by…is none of my business.

What I mean to say is this: God gives me a unique life, prompts me to write about it, helps me know what to say, and then does whatever the heck he wants with the finished product, to which I say, “Works for me.”

If two people read my posts, that’s cool. Maybe it will resonate with one of them and offer her something she is looking for.

If no one reads my posts, that’s fine too. I still wrote down the Thing and what I learned from the Thing. God reads it, I’m fairly certain.

If lots of people read a post, then maybe that crazytown Thing was a good springboard for talking about things other people are pondering too.

Purpose is another rhetorical function I discuss at length with my students. One must know one’s purpose in order to be effective in writing persuasively.

I believe that now, four and a half years after beginning to write in earnest, I have identified my writing’s purpose:

To say what God tells me to say.

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