Actually, it’s been almost a year….361 days since the last blog post. Let me start by saying, I’m sorry….
Writing has always been a big part of who I am. Writing is therapeutic for me. Writing is my release, I can put pen to paper (or fingers to keys), and pour out my heart. On my darkest days writing brings me light. My writing often reflects my emotion because I write from my heart. My feelings dipped in ink and stamped on paper. I am transparent, honest and raw.
But I’m also a hesitant sharer. I wrote in middle school, scribbling furiously in a secret journal, sharing my thoughts only with myself. I wrote in high school, sharing some of my most special pieces with just my favorite English Teacher. I wrote when I was I college and newly married, letters to myself, of the future I imagined for myself and my new husband. I wrote when I became a mom, chronicaling the everyday events of my daughter. Light hearted and happy, these were the stories of my life, a glimpse into the shenanigans of my walk in mommy hood.
Then I began to write about my son; the guilt that I felt with my first reaction to his diagnosis. I wrote about my feelings about Down syndrome. What it has given and what it has taken away. I need it, my heart needed it. And then after almost a year, I decided to share. I shared everything, I put it all out there. And I was relived. I felt like I was using my testimony to help other families who were just beginning there walk down the blue and yellow road of Down syndrome. I shared my blog with some of my fellow moms, my family and friends. And then something happened.
Someone noticed my blog, they noticed a post. A post about an experience that I had with a cashier, so they shared it. And they shared it, and shared it, and shared it. Before long the post had been shared so much that it was considered “viral”. Then it turned into something more than my heart on paper, it was a “pro-life movement”, it was a “call for attention”, it was “monopolizing my child” and it “was all a lie”. I looked beyond many of the comments, including the private ones that came with hateful comments directed at my son. I took comfort in the many encouraging posts from people who commented with love, encouragement and stories of their own.
I continued to write and share here and on my blog Facebook page, but less often. I was hesitant, the comments had gotten into my heart, I was being more guarded with my sharing. The negative comments became fewer and things felt like they were back to normal, until I found out that Gabes photo had been taken, edited to include the words “I got cancer” and was being used on multiple Facebook pages for likes and shares. I worked hard to get them removed and despite several pages being closed, many more remained active, using Gabe for like farming.
So I stopped. I stopped blogging, I kept writing, but not sharing. I decided that I would close Hand Me Downs, and go back to sharing with those closest to me only. And then two things happened, last week I got an email with a photo in it. A sweet baby girl, snuggled up in her mamas arms, her mama wrote,
“I sorry my English not good, from Italy. Your writing give me hope when daughter, Elena, was born Down syndrome. I see your son smile and think it’s all okay. She is good health and we love her. Thank you for your sharing. Ilaria”
Then tonight the post Sometimes I Forget resurfaced on Scary Mommy. A good friend tagged me in it and I was initially terrified. Then I remembered Ilaria and Elana and I just don’t care anymore. In the words of Taylor Swift, “haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate”. And “I’m just gonna shake, shake, shake, shake, shake, I shake it off, I shake it off!”
Feel free to comment below if y’all don’t like it, but I’m all done letting others bad behavior dictate my choices!