I was very moved by a recent comment I received on my blog.
I was asked whether “all was well” since I had been silent for more than a month in the blogosphere.
Life Happens, To All Of Us
There are many reasons we may hit the pause button or stop blogging for a period of time.
We may need to be quiet to divert our time and energy to pressing concerns.
We may have health complications.
We may need to replenish our body and our spirit.
We may not need a specific reason.Just time for a break.
In my personal life?An unexpected family crisis.Then Christmas came along.
After all, blogging should be a fun part of our lives.Not a self-imposed chore with a strict timeline.
Yet, I respect how many bloggers set different writing goals and parameters.
The First Post I Read in 2020
I read Shelley’s recent candid post Quaint Revival on why and how she continues to blog.She brought up the concept of clicks as “fly-by clicker types” and other categories of superficial followers. Not a new topic in the blogosphere.
Shelley’s wisdom helped me reflect on the blogging friends I have made and the reasons I blog.
Are they Real People who treat me like a Real Person? Do theyactually read my stories?Do they read my comments on their site?
My Aha Moment
Just like in Real Life, I prefer to hang out with Real People who genuinely share and care.Blogging friends who truly make a difference.
You impact the Real World in more ways than you may realize.
Five Ways The Blogging World Entered My Real World This Past Month
1. Thank you, Donna and Richard, for a fun lunch date.Retirement Reflections We are long past the introductory Blind Date (Link) stage when we met last Spring.It feels as if we have been friends for a very long time.It was also a real treat to meet your son and his girlfriend visiting from overseas.We look forward to many more future get-togethers.
2. Thank you, Annika, Annika Perry for writing a beautiful children’s book.I received “Oskar’s Quest” just in time for my granddaughter, Abby’s fourth birthday.A beautifully illustrated book sharing a message of courage, kindness and friendship.Abby loves to follow along and she is already reading (memorized) part of the book, especially the sound effects.
Abby opening her birthday present.
Abby loves the golden bird, “Maya.”
Abby can read some of the words.
We love to cuddle and read books.
3.I met Joanne Tracey on her blog andanyways.comJoanne’s book, “Happy Ever After” was a finalist in the 2019 Romance Writers of Australia Romantic Book of the Year (Ruby) Awards. I can see why Joanne won this honour.“Happy Ever After” is an engaging and compelling story about the nuances and challenges of relationships, marriage and happiness. Suspense, too.I am almost finished reading this book and I still have no idea how the story will end.
So many books, so little time.
Our precious four year old, Abby.
4. Thank you, Yvette, priorhouse blog for your inspiration on my title for this post.I have always remembered a sentence on your blog that resonated with me.“Don’t you love it when blog world meets the real world?”
5. Thank you, Suzanne, Picture Retirement for commenting on my “radio silence”and “hoping all was well.”You entered my Real World and you touched my heart.
I Appreciate The Blogging Community and The Friends I Have Made
I learn something new from every post I read.
I have the opportunity to vicariously experience parts of our planet through your adventures.
I see the world through your lens.
I am informed and I am entertained.
I learn lessons when you share your vulnerabilities.
I appreciate when you share your wisdom.
Most of all, thank you for your Humanity. You make a difference.
Especially, when you touch someone’s heart.
Have you ever been emotionally moved by a comment on your blog?
Have you ever hit the “pause” button and taken a break from blogging?
Especially two weeks before our wedding anniversary.
Is there ever a good time to lie?
It is actually an act of omission.Something I did not want to tell him.
Is this still considered a lie?
It Started Last Sunday
I had booked a massage.A real treat.
Before the massage, I took off my wedding ring and I placed it in my wallet.
An hour of bliss followed.
On the way home I stopped at Discovery Coffee to buy coffee beans.They have the best coffee in Victoria and it is worth the drive to pick up the beans.
A perfect end to my week.
I realized I was not wearing my wedding ring.
I was quite certain I had placed it in my wallet.
I checked my wallet. No luck.
I did have spa brain yesterday, so I might be wrong.
I completely emptied my purse.No luck.
I phoned the Spa to see whether anyone had turned in a wedding ring, a simple gold band.Nothing.
I phoned Discovery Coffee.They checked the back desk where lost and found items are placed.Nada.
Darn.I Feel Sick To My Stomach.
It is just a ring.A material object.
I am actually surprised I haven’t lost it before now.
I take it off before every yoga class, sometimes placing it on the towel next to me.I used to take it off before running when I used to run.My fingers swell and I am not in the mood to have anything cut off.
It is only a physical item.It is not as if anything serious has happened, especially to anyone I love.
Physical items can be replaced.
Then why do I feel sick to my stomach?
Plenty of Fish circa 1976
Plenty of Fish circa 1976
Forty-one Years Ago
This ring was given to me as a symbol of commitment and a promise we made to each other.
Forty-one years ago it was a shiny, simple, smooth gold band.
Forty-one years later this ring shows some wear and tear.Not unlike all marriages.
This ring means even more to me now.
It represents a friendship and a life we have built together.
It is symbolic of our enduring love for each other.
Riding through life together
Love is a gamble
Do couples start to look alike?
I Do Not Want To Tell My Husband
I am disappointed and upset.I will likely start crying.
He may not even notice the missing ring.
I could replace the ring with a similar looking gold band.
My husband would say the right things to make me feel better.He always does.
He has been my best friend for over forty-one years.I have always been able to count on him.
Lightning Lake, Manning Park, B.C.
Top of the World Drive, Yukon, 2011
I phone the Spa and Discovery Coffee again.
A last-ditch effort to find the ring.
Nothing was turned in at the Spa.
A friendly voice answers at Discovery Coffee.“Yes, they have found the ring!”
Am I Using Up My Good Luck Quota?
I often think of luck as a finite amount of good in my life.
I am allocated a limited quantity of good luck in my lifetime.I do not want to waste it.
I recently wrote about finding the Ruby Red Slippers link here Now my ring shows up.These are two small examples of something good going my way.
What are the chances?
I would rather save the good luck for the most important parts of my life, the people in my life.My loved ones.
I realize life doesn’t work this way.
We play the cards we are dealt, good and bad.
I am grateful for the hand I have been dealt for most of my life.
Do I Tell My husband?
Lying is not a good thing.
Yet, we are also not perfect.I am sure the both of us have kept silent at times or told white lies to spare feelings.
We believe in communication in our marriage.Even on difficult subjects.
After all these years, I could not hide anything from my husband.We know each other too well.
Communication is often non-verbal.
Lost Or Found
I was not aware how much this ring meant to me, until I lost it.
A good reminder for a great deal in life.
I also do not need an object to remind me of our respect and love for each other.For us, love is a verb.We show up for each other every day.
I was planning to tell my husband about the ring, lost or found.
When he opens his inbox today and reads this story.
Happy Anniversary, Sweetheart.
Thank you for the forty-one years we have shared together.I look forward to many more.
Aukland Zoo, New Zealand
Aukland Zoo, New Zealand
Have you ever lost a special item? Are there times when not telling the truth is a good thing?
Although, this could still have serious repercussions.
I Have Been Called Different Names In My Life.
My husband often calls me “Sweetie” or “Dear.”He likely has a few more names for me (under his breath).
My daughters call me “Mom.”
My parents used to call me “Friedchen.”It is a term of endearment using my middle name.
The last few years I have had the privilege of being called “Grandma Erica.”
When Did Erica/Erika Begin?
When I began school, my teachers always wrote my name as “Erica.”I learned to write my name as “Erica.”
My signature on all of my paperwork, wedding certificate, driver’s license and bank cards is “Erica.”
Much later in life, a glance at my birth certificate revealed “Erika.”I did not think it really mattered at this point.
I was wrong!
9/11 Was Pivotal.
New passport regulations carefully scrutinized the spelling of all names.I had to make sure my passport name, birth certificate and signature were an exact match.
I now had to sign specific documents with the spelling “Erika.”I was not at all used to writing this “new” name.
My Wonderful Boss With A Great Sense Of Humour.
I was fortunate to work in a very progressive dental office for almost twenty-five years.We often had the opportunity to take continuing education courses and attend conferences.Some of the conferences were held in a different city and out of the country.
This dentist was finalizing the travel arrangements for a conference.He was initially puzzled about the “new” name, “Erika.”Our passport and ticket information had to be accurate.
He had a great sense of humour.From now on, he would address correspondence to me as “Erica/Erika.”
It aways made me smile.
Beginning the WordPress Blog.
I watched YouTube videos and I went to “how to start a blog” websites. I did not want to overthink the process.I might change my mind.
“Behindthescenery” domain was already taken.Therefore, I chose “Behindthesceneryphoto.”
I had to type in a username.
I typed in “Erica/Erika.”
I did not want to interrupt the flow of setting up a WordPress blog.I could always finesse things later.
Almost Everyone Has A Story Behind Their Name.
They may have a name in honour of a family member.We were advised to name our first child, “Donat.”We politely disregarded this suggestion.You are welcome, Sara.
Basalt Columns, Iceland
Some people choose to change their name for various reasons.
Some people prefer to use their middle name or a nickname.
A glance at a birth certificate may reveal a name different from the one they have been called all their life.
My Thoughts This Moment In Time.
Most of the time I use the name, “Erica.”
Specific documents necessitate the spelling, “Erika.”My hands may shake when my signature requires this “new” spelling. I play by the rules.
In today’s world of minimalism and simplifying, “Erica/Erika” is now six syllables.Am I taking up too much room?It is cyberspace after all.
Readers in our blogging community have also been using “E/E.”
Do I Change The Name On My Blog?
I do not mind what I am called.“Erica” sounds the same as “Erika” to me.
I like and answer to all of the above.
As for the name on my blog?
I am keeping “Erica/Erika.”At least for now.
It always makes me smile.
Do you have a story behind your name?Would you like to change your name?
The Story Behind The Story
I had just completed a draft of this story about my name(s). I was not sure when or whether I would click “publish.”