Friday, February 15, 2013

* First VGB: From Claudia Mundell

I'm happy to present my first VGB (Volunteer Guest Blogger), Claudia Mundell of Claudia's Page. Although the lovely and talented Claudia mentions me in her post, it was not a requirement! So, come on bloggers & friends....please e-mail me if you have something you'd like to share as one of my VGBs, and we'll go from there. I only have about five so far, so there's plenty of room. 

I forgot to ask Claudia for her bio and when I went to her blog, I couldn't find a profile page, either. Please check out her blog because she's a wonderful person and writes beautifully. Be sure and scroll all the way down to the bottom of her blog to see her publications. She's too shy, I guess, to have them readily available!

The Therapy of Blogging

The first decade of the new century started off rough for me. My dad died, my dog died, my hubby lost 18 inches of his colon, my sons faced some hard growing up experiences (always hard for a mother to watch), my job was downsized and eliminated, my mother’s house burned, the financial market floundered, and my husband along with three other men in his Fortune 500 company were forced into retirement. I felt one slam after another.

My husband was not happy about his retirement (neither were the other men), and it was grueling to see his discontent. I had to find a way to let off my own pressure somewhere other than home. Journaling never worked for me because I never stayed with it once started. On July 4th of 2009, I came to the computer and sat down. I had avoided blogging, but suddenly decided to teach myself something new, to focus outward with some small part of my life. I set up the pages, wrote, posted and it felt good. The rules were simple for me: post several times a week, write conversationally, stay off religion and politics, and not to whine!

As I posted, I also read other blogs. I found the nicest people out there in Blog Land. I read numerous pages and many of us shared activities or situations in common. Sorrow, joy, tea, writing, reading, aging and more became common ground for forming some authentic cyber friendships. The other writers began to post comments on my blog too. Oh, I found myself looking for their names, their thoughts. When I didn’t hear, I began to worry about them, wondered if they were okay in their own worlds.

The gifts came too: a tea plaque from Linda, writing markets from Donna, a give-away box from Susan, a special Precious Moments figurine from Becky, handwritten letters from Lynn and more. I felt like Sally Field when she accepted the Academy Award. Why, they like me, really like me! But I liked them back and appreciated their connections. I was glad I had gone out on a limb, risked exposing myself on the blog, and I had found a valid and sincere community of caring people I had never met.

I have met in person for brief moments Linda from St. Louis, Donna from St. Peters, and Ginny from Aztec, New Mexico, and I know personally John from Wales. I hope to meet others someday. It doesn’t matter though if we never meet face to face because these blog buddies pay off every day when they leave comments on my blog. Their words and thoughts, the shared time in print, and the jovial connections all validate me. The online associations prove to me again that the world is a great place to be and that sharing friendship over a cup of tea or on the page…well, it is all still human connection. Blogging made mighty fine therapy for me and pretty cheap to do too! -- Claudia Mundell


Thank you, Claudia! And readers, please feel free to leave a message because she'll be checking in from time to time, to answer questions and/or comments.

* Welcome to my newest follower Terra. I hope you'll stop by often and always enjoy what you read and see! * 

"How rare and wonderful is that flash in the moment when we realize we have discovered a friend."- William Rotsler