When I was a kid in elementary school I never spoke up or offered my own opinions. I was the girl who always agreed with the popular kids to avoid any drama. In the early years of high school I rarely said anything at all – I was quietly trying to figure out who I was and what my place would be. As I became one of the senior students I was getting into a groove and I felt more comfortable with speaking my mind in select company.

When I got to college I was downright obnoxious about having my opinion heard and in university I had my good moments and some spoke up in bad and hurtful ways.

These days I am more zen about things. I write my opinion and my feelings, here and in notebooks (and on Twitter or Facebook), I think about things a lot more before deciding what I want to say and how – I frustrate my husband by sending him emails telling him things I can’t say out loud. I still have lively debates with friends and I enjoy them immensely, because I know there will be no love lost when we’re finished.

I know I have my father to thank for my ability to frame my argument, I had to back up everything, prove everything. He would never just accept even the most basic points of an argument. It was frustrating trying to make a point when I was 8, but now I see what he was doing. He never let me get away with anything.

That being said, there are things I avoid talking about because it’s not worth the argument. There are things I’m afraid to talk about here because I fear the backlash. Sometimes it’s not worth it.

And now even the most basic things are coming into question. How much do I censor myself and how much do I let fly? What do I say here for any audience that comes across it and what do I save for my journals? Do I want lively debate, or do I want a pleasant space where I can write and fear no reprisals?

Do I want to write here at all if I can’t be open about my life and my thoughts?

Which, of course, brings about the question of what I’m trying to accomplish with this blog and this website. Something I have been trying to figure out for some time. Primarily I am a writer, and this is my space to store my writing and share it with the people who know me and the people who have experiences similar to mine. I’d like to think that eventually people will come across my blog and start reading it the way I’ve starting reading the blogs of other women whose experiences struck a chord with me.

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