I created “Pieces of Peace” more than four years ago, and I haven’t posted anything since May 2009. Hardly anyone even knows this blog exists. I initially started it because I wanted a venue for sharing more of my own writing, as opposed to writing I do for various assignments. While I’ve written a lot since May 2009, I haven’t shared any of it here. That’s going to change this month. With some anxiety, I am intentionally embarking on a discipline of writing for this blog every day in April.
Why now, you ask? Well, as of today, April 1, 2013, I am officially eligible for Medicare. Even though my birthday isn’t until later this month, the little card from the U.S. government I now carry around with me says my Medicare coverage is effective today. I turn 65 this month. How is that happening? Other milestone birthdays have come and gone; I turned 30, 40, 50 and 60 without much angst. For some reason, age 65 sounds so much older than I think I am and than I want to be. It feels like turning 65 marks my official entry into “senior citizen” land, and I’m not at all sure I want to go there!
So to mark this milestone, each day during the month of April, I intend to share reflections, musings, narratives, and opinions on random topics of interest to me over 65 years of living. I say “I intend” because, frankly, I’m a little worried that other duties and interests will clamor for attention and I won’t be able to fulfill this challenge to myself. Plus, I don’t usually write off the top of my head and go public. I like to let my words simmer awhile and give myself time to edit, revise, edit and revise some more before I let them see the light of day. Writing and publishing every day will not let me do that. To make things a little easier and give myself a greater chance of achieving my goal, I might cheat a little and reprint or adapt things I’ve written in the past, some of which have been published elsewhere and some not.
Recently, I’ve been reading the new book, Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, by Susan Cain. In the introduction, Cain lists a number of characteristics of introverts, making it easy for me to confirm what I already know: I am an introvert! Of particular relevance for this blog, she notes that introverts “listen more than they talk, think before they speak, and often feel as if they express themselves better in writing than in conversation” (p. 11). I can relate. Make me speak extemporaneously or engage in large group conversation and I get all tongue-tied; give me a pen and paper (or a computer and keyboard) and I can usually express myself fairly well and even offer strong opinions on controversial issues. I also personally understand what Cain means when she writes, “[Introverts] welcome the chance to communicate digitally. The same person who would never raise [her] hand in a lecture hall of two hundred people might blog to two thousand, or two million, without thinking twice. The same person who finds it difficult to introduce [her]self to strangers might establish a presence online and then extend these relationships into the real world” (p. 63).
I actually am “thinking twice” and I confess I’m a little nervous about this new blog challenge. But it’s something I’ve been wanting to do for a long time (witness this four-year-old blog that no one has seen yet), so I’m going to try. It will be interesting to see how it turns out!