Ever since announcing my return to The Marshfield Mail as a staff writer, the response from my friends and “fans” in the community has been overwhelming. For those who don’t follow my life as closely as the rest, back in September of 2019 I wrote and published my first opinion piece for the newspaper. At the time, the now infamous, Karen Craigo was the acting editor for the paper and when I shared my idea and vision for my column Live Your You, she was fully supportive and willing to publish my thoughts.
Little did I know that my words, rarely filtered or edited, would touch so many of you in so many different ways. As I submitted my articles each week and began to get feedback from you while I was out and about (often times at Wal-mart), I felt so blessed to be able to connect with my community on such a personal level.
And then COVID came. My articles began to grow less frequent. My mind was consumed with fear and unrest. I simply couldn’t write anymore, I had nothing positive to say. And if you know me, you know that I’m a firm believer of “if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” So, my words dried up while my mind ran in circles and I removed myself from the world getting lost in an ocean of alcohol and panic attacks.
Accepting that I had succumbed to the panicked and racing thoughts in my mind, I submitted my goodbye letter to Karen. Little did I know that she had written her notorious parting letter and peaced out, my goodbye went unread and you were left wanting more, waiting for my words of wisdom (haha), and yet I had retreated into my own head.
I’m sorry I stopped writing so abruptly and without explanation. I’m not typically an unreliable person. But I ran out of words. I ran out of perspective. I was stuck/lost in my own ocean of feelings and I needed to find my life raft. Like they say on airplanes-put on your own air mask before helping anyone else.
Now here we are. Two years later. I’m not lost in the ocean anymore. I’ve got a boat and it’s full of people. We all survived. We aren’t exactly the same anymore; we’ve seen some stuff. We’ve learned, loved, lost, and grown.
When Shelby offered me this job at the newspaper back in February, so many of you said “I am going start buying the newspaper again…” with the hope that I’d be back here writing this column. I’ve waited a few months before approaching it. I wasn’t sure if I was ready. Believe it or not, I’ve been afraid. But who are we if we live only in fear? What is our life if we don’t step back into those places and things that make us uncomfortable and push us to grow?
Writing this column is me. It’s part of my purpose: to share words with you. If I cannot embrace my own advice how can I expect you to Live Your You? So, with the encouragement of Alyssa (our new editor-yes it’s confusing AF-all this changes at the Mail) I’m back!
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