In my job, I write almost every day, and every word and idea is subject to multiple reviews, criticisms, feedbacks, unsolicited and solicited advice. This is not an exaggeration - everything is read with an eye to finding weakness or fault. The majority of what I write is valued in terms of its impact: who reads it, where it is read, what people do with it. Of course, nothing dam(n)s thoughts and words faster than the feeling there are one hundred eyes looking over my shoulder, judging me harshly for using one word and not the other.
This blog is something of a blessed relief. It lets me write what I want and play with words without, really, any significant effect on my life and my standing; it is liberating. Except on those low days when I'm feeling fragile, and no-one comments, or the comments seem to miss the point I was trying to make, or I feel obliged to reciprocate the comments left and I don't - then, I feel kind of crappy.
I don't want to feel crappy about the blog, I want to feel good. I wish I was the kind of woman who writes, blithely assured of her own good points and general elegance of thought and phrase, with no need to look for affirmation from the numbers and content of comments at the bottom of the screen. And usually - sometimes - occasionally - once in a while - the last Tuesday of November - I am. But I want protection when I am not my most fabulous self, and so I switched the comments off.
I rather miss people's comments. I like reading others' thoughts, their perspectives and their experiences. I love it when someone loves what I've written - love it. But on balance, I like writing out into the void, so that I don't become fixated on writing for a specific - and in my mind, inevitably judgmental - audience.
So, to those who are looking for the comments button: it's not you, or your computer, it's me. But you can get me on an email address, which is listed in my profile. It's not my everyday address, but I do read it relatively often. I might not reply to your email in good time because I have been buried by an unexpected avalanche at work, brought on by some sad events that are themselves sapping my energy, and when I do correspond with people I like to have something to say, something worthwhile reading - but I do appreciate and welcome your ideas, and your making the effort to reach out, and I will respond, almost certainly when you have given up hope of my ever answering.