Sue Eckstein wrote an article in the Guardian entitled “why people blog about illness”. She, like me, is a woman who had never before publicized personal intricacies, nor even read a blog before jotting her first few words. There is much of her article that concurs with my own sentiments about writing and why it has become such and fundamental and vital element of my present existence. She writes,
“the writing of a daily blog post became as important to my recovery as my antibiotics and physio exercises; it provided a shape to the day and gave me a sense of purpose – a sense that I had some control in an environment where almost everything else was happening to and not with me.”
It is completely dumbfounding and bewildering (excuse the tautology) how composition, which is an area I have always considered to me one of my weakest, has become my most effective lifeline. It is true that writing grants me an element of control and does instill a routine to my days. I do not intend to impugn her opinion, however, for me this is only the tip of the iceberg, only the superficial and easily explicable rationale as to why the formulation of a coherent piece of prose is so therapeutic.
I believe that for a large number of the individuals that blog about illness or blog as a result of illness, the challenge to create a few lines which reveal, whether the readers notice it or not, a thought, fear, anxiety or indifference, forces the writer to address this issue in a deep and meaningful way to them. The blog then provides a forum for the writer to have means to then release it. The captivity of the idea into a piece of writing can liberate the issue from tormenting the mind of the writer. This does not mean that “ill” writer will never again struggle with this thought, fear, anxiety or indifference; yet, it can provide, at least, a temporary release.
Writing is, for me, akin to a whirlwind romance. It is all absorbing, all consuming. It is not crucial that anyone else sees the beauty of my love, or understands his power over me. I cannot help becoming completely distracted from my pain when dominated by him. However, it is always wonderful when someone else does appreciate his style or also finds him appealing.