The Blog Where I Tell You Why I Haven’t Been Writing

The cursor blinks. Incessantly. Like a young child intent on knowing “why?”

Why?

Why?

Why?

It’s a taunt that punctuates my fear and insecurity.

Metaphors scurry through my mind like rodents playing a game of chicken. Topics alternately rush into the forefront and fight for attention or hide behind accusations that taunt “stupid, boring, no one wants to read that.” I close my laptop on my blank Word document.

I wrestle with doubts. What new thing can I bring to the over-crowded blogosphere? Who wants to read what I am writing? How do I find readers?

I am really good at erecting walls. Not so good at letting people in. I learned early on that chaos at home was shameful and needed to be kept a secret. Chaos and secrets were rampant throughout my marriage. I still want to hide, pretend everything is just fine. I certainly don’t want to expose myself. What was I thinking when I started blogging?

Success. Failure. Indifference. I’m overwhelmed. Silenced. My laptop stays closed.

I slink into a blog hiatus. A day turns into a week. Two weeks. Three weeks.

The familiar dread of a looming deadline weighs on me. As a procrastinator I know that feeling all too well. The idea that it won’t matter much if I don’t write takes root. Ironically, that is kind of scarier than writing.

Voices in my head sneer, “See. He was right. You never follow through.” Echoes so familiar it doesn’t occur to me to question them.

Weeks turn into months. The need to write beats with my heart. But fear suffocates and controls me. I am afraid of rejection, indifference, mediocrity. I hide.

It’s a learned response. A habit born out of the need to survive in a toxic relationship. I’m familiar with living stealthily, invisible, unnoticed.

Then the inspiration I was looking for comes. It’s simple really.

Do it anyway.

Write afraid.

“For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

Write afraid. Because fear doesn’t negate what God has done for me. I can fight whatever it is that is trying to keep me silenced and ineffective. I realize I don’t have to listen to the voices that say, “You can’t.” The voices that tell me, “Here you go again. Starting something and not finishing.”

I doesn’t matter how many times I fall down. I just need to get back up one more time.

Before Christmas, I decided that I was on an intentional blog holiday. I stopped beating myself up for what I wasn’t doing and started enjoying my family and our traditions. While I still heard the lies in my head, I chose to listen harder to the truth. I have not failed to live up to God’s expectations. He made me. He knows me. He loves me right where I am, writing or stuck.

When I stopped being so hard on myself, I started to remember why I began writing.

“Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.” Psalm 23:4

I encountered that dark valley when my marriage imploded. It was surprising to just about everybody, including me, that I had been living in an abusive marriage.

I felt betrayed and set adrift at the loss of my marriage. I was broken and alone. I turned to God when I had nowhere else to go. He gave me peace in the midst of the chaos. It changed me.

It’s out of that transformation I started writing. I write to tell what God has done for me, what he is doing in me. So whether I’m afraid, or want to hide, or feel like I have nothing new to offer I am going to keep writing.

“So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” Isaiah 41:10

 

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22 Responses to The Blog Where I Tell You Why I Haven’t Been Writing

  1. AND HE will be with your mouth and teach you what you should say – you are setting other captives free by allowing Him to use you and what you “pen”… love you lady!!!

  2. Cyndee says:

    So glad to see a new post. You are amazing! Thanks for sharing. It is just what I needed to hear today.

  3. Carole says:

    Bravo!!! Just what my heart needed TODAY!!!

  4. Arlene says:

    You are very inspiring Charlotte! Keep on posting!!

  5. sholbrook1 says:

    Charlotte, on any given day I could write this very piece. Being thtuck is so common to all of us who put fingers to the keyboard (it used to be pen to paper but times change!) During my illness this year, I could barely speak, let alone actually write anything. Getting back to it feels good, and yet as you say…I write from fear most of the time. I write because I can’t NOT write. Like you, I have to share what God has done and is doing for me. I want to recommend a book to you that has helped me tremendously…The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron. It can be read and worked alone or in a class situation. I’ve done both and I have just dug it out to give myself a kick start again. I promise you will read along and think “That’s exactly how I feel.” It gives practical things to do to help you keep writing and, while not exactly Christian, it is spiritual…Godly. In the meantime, keep writing and I promise I, for one, will be reading. Hope you are subscribing to my blog http://www.faithbreezes.blogspot.com. Hang in there, girl. Praying for you to be un-thtuck!

    • Charlotte Hammer says:

      I’ll check that book out, Sue. Thank you so much for your encouragement. I will make sure I am subscribed to your blog!

  6. Lisa Stokoe says:

    I so loved this blog Charlotte! So real and transparent! So many of us bloggers … whether newbies like myself or old-timers, have felt that very same thing! I think when we choose to be transparent, to take off the mask and speak on real issues and vulnerable topics, its scary on our end. But the the beautiful thing about it, is that each time we venture on this sneering path… we release the grip of fear that clings to us and we also liberate someone else by affording them “borrowed courage” to step forward in the reality of their hurts and pains. Keep plodding forward my friend! Its refreshing!

  7. Lisa says:

    Oh Charlotte, how I could relate to this post. I loved your words, “While I still heard the lies in my head, I chose to listen harder to the truth. I have not failed to live up to God’s expectations. He made me. He knows me. He loves me right where I am, writing or stuck. When I stopped being so hard on myself, I started to remember why I began writing.’Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me.’ Psalm 23:4” Thank you for being brave enough to write this and publish it, and for the encouragement you left me on the GSD site today 🙂

  8. Bobbi Raffin says:

    Great post, Charlotte!! I love when you state, ‘Write afraid’. Yes – write afraid. Just start writing. Great Job!! 🙂 ~ Bobbi

  9. Jo Ann Fore says:

    Do it anyway—write afraid. YES! That we would all do more of this.

    Thank you for linking up with us today, Charlotte. <3

  10. securelyheld says:

    Thank you for sharing your heart and your fears, Charlotte. This truly ministered to me as I have been struggling with pressing on.

  11. Charlotte, you are brave and beautiful and strong. Thank you for being transparent, for allowing us to view your insecurities and for sharing. So glad you linked up with us!

  12. meg says:

    Hi there, I’ve been away for a week, my son got married! This morning I said to myself, “come on, get back in the groove, check out JoAnn.” It sometimes seems like homework, you know? Anyway, yours was the first one I hit, I really do enjoy checking out what others have posted, and your blog touched that spot in me of how we really want to write yet still want to hide our stories out of shame. I keep thinking that there has to be a way to do this that shows our stories ended up giving us more than we could have imagined, for they have. They lead us to deeper faith and trust in God’s Love, and allow us to emerge as mature, seasoned adults. Not bad. Keep writing, meg

    • Charlotte Hammer says:

      Congratulations for your son’s wedding. Thank you so much for your comment…I am believing and trusting that ALL things work for good.

  13. Andrea says:

    I totally get where you are coming from – I struggle with those very same fears and insecurities. And you are a beautiful writer, so I am glad you overcame today!

  14. Christine P. says:

    Charlotte…what you wrote really resonated with me. I like what someone else wrote also about the borrowed courage we can all receive from be so encouraged by your words and your victory over your fear. When we are writing about what God has done the enemy just hates for HIM to receive the praise HE so deserves. He knows there is great power to heal for others in that sharing, also.
    Keep on!

  15. angieryg says:

    Your post was beautiful and honest and hope filled. But I am going to have to quote your About Me Page:
    “I’m not sure why it’s so surprising to me that these wonderful, unique, beautiful creatures insist on not being perfect.” – Hilarious
    I am so glad you linked up and I look forward to connecting more through Inspire Me Monday!

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