Authorities report petite 5’3″ Asian-American woman with brown hair, brown eyes, who had gone missing six-and-a-half years ago emerged tired but happy under a mountain of blogging notes in her office. Her story follows.
I was never sympathetic to mothers who wanted to step outside the home, whether for coffee or career. Until the poem st r u gg ling artist sprung a leak in my heart. Oh, I see. The women were trying to keep her in view, the SELF the roles within the four walls can easily consume.
I would never have written the poem my first five years as a mom. I had erased, along with myself, my capacity for wanting anything more than domesticity. With easy and undemanding husband and son, it was a self-imposed disappearance traceable to those troublesome standards of mine. I would give all as Mother. But as the st r u gg ling artist took on life it hit me that simmering and soaping in the kitchen for three hours was a bit excessive and not the best redemption of my education and time. Ah, there’s that question of woman’s place in the world, the loaded pistol. I consider homemaking among the noblest of callings, the kitchen the literal source of nourishment for the family. With joy I have poured years and love into that room. Another place with a tale is the car that is a second home for many Californians. I’ve realized rearview mirrors are for looking at someone else – not yourself. Just yesterday it had shown me my baby boy taking in the world in wonder. He now smiles back through that small mirror, full of questions and song and laughter. Okay, Mom, sit back. God’s blessed those years over stove and sink. Your boy thrives. And you?
Fall in love is what I did on the blog, the best thing I’ve taken up since marrying the man I did and having my son. Fell in love with the process, the art. What a thrill – not the instant rush in a roller coaster but the profound satisfaction of being communicated. Readers let me know, yes, I got through. And along the way, I discovered I am a person. A self-portrait of the woman who’d gone missing in the mothering reemerged from the words that came. She loves telling stories. She’ll pick her battles but on marked ground will dig her heels in, even to bleed in the fight. When she doesn’t have the answers, she could think out loud through the writing. And find a world was listening. My heart felt like it started beating again to put words together. How can this be, when I love my family as I do, when plenty of good filled my life?
When you are your child’s school and you try to keep up the home cooking, time is wishful thinking. This variable summary of the activities that fill my week doesn’t even include the groceries. In cracks of time, I’m reading our history text or planning my next post, though I’m scribbling away in my head throughout the day.
Fresh air/Extracurricular activity
Martial Arts/My workout
Son’s bed routine
Sink into office chair. Oh yes, I have something called a husband. Tend to homeschool matters. Get back to readers. Try. To. Write. Clean? Build my social media networks? Talk to more magazine editors? Write my ebook? Don’t forget my food blog.
So kidding me.
The Opinionated Man declined to answer this question in the recent interview: “If your wife had your personality, abilities, and drive (that is, were she your twin but by gender) do you think she could pull off blogging as successfully as the Opinionated Woman without compromising her responsibilities to her family – especially as a mother?” OM said he didn’t like to get into hypotheticals. All I know is when my husband takes our son out to leave me to my devices, he throws open a window for me but I can’t shake the guilt that I should be with them. No, women can’t have it all. At least not mothers. So while my statistics pale in the shadow of power bloggers, I take pause at this milepost of follows to look back on the road my guys and I have managed to pave. I came on WordPress in March, (backposted February’s thoughts) a neophyte in the world of blogging. Took a while to puzzle out the technique and art, and gained a modest 100 followers by May. I tried putting up this post right on the heels of a 1000 subscribers five months later – but you guessed it, time did not allow.
I rummage in the purse for a weightier token of my affection and gratitude for your faithful reading, the benevolent feedback. Thank you doesn’t seem to cut it. But night has fallen and the sand rises in the hourglass. The thanks will have to do. If you can stay a bit, here’s a lineup of oldies you might have missed. I saw day in their writing. It might not be clear that you can tap the links to open. Hope you enjoy. You’ve been amazing.
The post that launched the holistic journey:
Lessons from My 30s
The Question of Human Suffering
The Writing Process: Save Spit
The Writing Process II: Let the Clichés R.I.P.
The Writing Process II: Grammar Mafia
65 thoughts on “1000 Readers Recover Missing Woman”
Congratulations, Diana! I’m inspired by your journey into and through motherhood and re-de-fin(d)-ing yourself through your words and your art. I have a strong feeling that your husband and son are benefiting just as much as you from you coming through the other side of the mothering birth canal. Will check out some of your “oldies” but faves.
I wanted to add in the post that my newer readers have been as generous as the older ones. I really appreciate the warm, warm support. Diana
Glad to hear of the personal gratification you’ve achieved since penning down your thoughts on a very special rung of this social network. Thank you for sharing all of this fine stuff with us. Have a wonderful day.
Thanks for the support, LJH.
A good post and my eyes still kind of glossed over the question. 😉
I think we are all made differently and what is easy for some is not for others. That is what makes blogging special, it can’t be done in the same way by everyone. You have a great writing voice and I have no doubt you will reach the audience number you strive for. All the best, as always. -OM
Glossed over? Oh, you’re smarter and more opinionated (and tougher?) than to dodge potential bullets. It was a great question I’d asked LOL.
Wonderfully written post Diana, you express your journey through family life and into the world of blogging so eloquently. I am at the other end of the spectrum, having raised my three now-grown children, although my youngest, my 21 year old Aspie daughter, still lives with us.
My years as a full time, stay at home mum were my happiest, like you I considered being a homemaker and providing the nurturing, love and care to my family the highest calling. Unfortunately my 22 year marriage came to an end.
It was later on in life that I became very lost and ony now, in the last year and particularly 6 months since I started blogging, that I at last have been able set free the writer inside, the real me, the one I can at last express here, amongst so many wonderful friends. I never thought this possible.
When you have the flow of expression hidden deep within your heart you cannot keep it down. It is very difficult keeping up with everything, especially when you have a young family to look after as you do, yet you have found your way and can release your gift, which is inspirational. Your beautiful writiing is testimony to this.
I look forward to reading more and I’m so glad that we met 🙂
Sherri, I’m so glad to share in your own journey as well. I don’t have the words on your marriage ending after all those years. Women cried, reading “struggling artist.” Sigh, dreams — and reality. But as I’ve told my little one since he could hear, that he’s my dream, I remember to drink in every grateful day with him. Blessings. Diana
Be blessed as you ‘drink in every grateful day’ with your little boy…as you already are Diana 🙂
BAh….I just yelled at him.
LOL (and frowning at self)
That’s life, lol 😉
What a wonderful post, Diana, in more ways than one. And the reveal was an interesting one too. It is true. Women can’t have it all, especially if they are mothers. Although I do believe that fathers could allow mothers to have more, if they took on half of the responsibilities of parenting. One day it will happen, and the world will be a better place for it.
Good point on fathers, and my guy has done plenty. I can’t complain (but I can SIGH)! At the same time, there are some things only Mom gets right. Days I’m bug-eyed with fatigue, my husband threatens that if I die, my son will have burgers and fried chicken everyday (neither of which he gets now) LOL.
Thank you, Diana 🙂
OMG, I love this, I like your husband lol. That is too funny, so you can’t die, you have to take care of both of them!!!!
I meant to tell you (to ease your mind about your daughter) that my husband and I were two strangers who met in the night. We were engaged in three months, married within another 5. If you haven’t seen this….
I loved the video, you’re so funny, you dance ok. Thanks for the encouragement. Yes that’s about how much time it’s been altogether that they have known each other. They are both on the same page about what they believe and that is comforting as well.
Great (about them).
This is a beautifully intimate and clear look into your life and journey. I’d say you have re-emerged a richer, fuller woman, mother, wife, blogger and soul. Thanks for sharing your wonderful journey. You seem to have a gift for writing and connecting. I’ve been blogging 2 years and am still finding my voice and audience. Blessings, Diana.
Aww…you just need to find more readers like you! I don’t see how you can’t grow a wonderful audience with the kind of feedback you have to offer. What a gem of a comment, Brad. Yes, you’ve all made me feel so rich: I almost said this in the post. Thanks a mil for your precious time and the palpable encouragement. And your voice is your heart, clear and full on your blog. Diana
Thank you Diana so much for your kind words again. With readers like you, I am rich and blessed.
You are an awesome blossom!!! Blessings D.
You’re too much. Thanks for the cheerleading, Shazza. Keep up the fun, interesting blogging.
Words to drool over. How many mothers simmer and stew between family, writing & obscurity? That is the nexus though, the center of it all. Bravo. What a writer you are.
Thank you for the affirmation I see comes from a deep place.
Reading this, I wonder how blogging would have affected my sudden realization, a few years back, that I was losing myself, that I had no idea who I was anymore. I didn’t start blogging until a few months ago. I really do wonder…
Wow, Randee. Did you feel that way as a mother and wife?
I was fine for the first ten years when my kids needed me for everything. I was working full time and doing the kids and the house full time, so there was no time to worry about me. But, as they got older and needed me less and I actually had some time to myself, I suddenly realized I had no idea who I was anymore. Most of it was related to my marriage. I had to get out. I’m good now though!
Wow. Thx for sharing, R. (And the support. =) )
You bet. I knew what you were talking about.. 🙂
What a lovely post Diana and thank you for sharing part of your life. You relate to your life with such understanding and for what you have achieved, you deserve sincere congratulations. You also write beautifully. Regards James 🙂
What encouragement and commendation, James. I’m touched. Thank you for taking the time – now and through the way.
I loved how you set this up. I can relate. When my girls were young, I found writing to be a wonderful creative outlet … and, yes, at times I felt I’d lost a bit of myself in an effort to be the best Mom ever. Fortunately, we all survived. 🙂 I wish you well.
Ha ha glad you all survived your do-or-die intentions, Judy. Thanks so much for sharing your journey with me. And I enjoyed your posts.
I loved it! Now I just have to find time to explore the others…
Thanks for your time, my friend. I appreciate you. It is enriching to read and write with you for the connection we have.
Whisper: I’m getting chills, Julia. =) Thanks for FBing. I so enjoy learning how some of these posts have applied in your family. It’s a pleasure sharing in your journey too, for your intelligence and experience with books and kids. I have been reading at your place off and on this year. Love, Diana
You write with such beauty, insight and honesty, Diana. I love following your blog.
Shirley, you’ve been such a wonderful supporter. Thank you for the clear, high praise. I’ve been planning to revisit. =) But you know why it’s taking a while! Back to the schooling right now….see you soon. Love, Diana
A very thoughtful blog. Both my daughter and daughter-in-law have chosen to be stay at home moms, and they have done a wonderful job. The kids are happy and healthy and live in a rich environment. Still I encourage both of them to get out and about, to do things that enrich their lives while they enrich the lives of their families. I am a strong believer that everyone benefits. –Curt
You are one awesome dad, Curt. Thanks for your time. I appreciate your support. Diana
It’s easy to support you, Diana. You have a great blog. –Curt
I came back to add the thought I had while I was out. It pleases me to no end to hear your grandkids thrive under the care of their conscientious mothers. Wonderful women. Rock that cradle, rule the world.
Great article. I’m glad you found time to write it. It’s certainly true that mothers are busy people. But there are a few of us husbands who truly appreciate your swlf-sacrifice.
Aww…thanks for the sweet word, Michael. And the follow. I look fwd to my revisit. =) (When I can manage it.)
Congratulations Diana, what you share is always from deep within, where the beauty of love for your family and others lives! Your posts are always a blessing to embrace, there is always a wonderful inner spirit in every word. God bless my sister!
Well, spirit speaks to spirit, Wendell. Which is why you remain sensitive to the things that come from the deepest places here. I appreciate the visit and commendation, as always. Sweetens the journey to exchange words that lend hope and strength, doesn’t it? Keep up the soulful truth-telling. Diana
Such a beautiful and heartwarming post. I think I’d agree with you that a woman is a great multi tasker and takes on so much more of the intrinsic things in life than the average man. Kudos to you for all you do and your diligence to make the time for your beautiful writing. 🙂
Thanks so much for the word of cheer onward, DG. It’s a losing battle for time. But fight I do.
Lovely post! I’m one of those people who never believed women can have it all. Maybe it’s because I grew up in a family with 6 kids where my parents both worked and life in our home was chaotic. I was the oldest girl, so I ended up doing a lot of babysitting. I also saw how stressed out and tired my parents were all the time and felt that I didn’t want my life to be that way. As it is, I have no children. I’m not sure if this was a choice or just the way circumstances worked out for me or maybe a bit of both. Anyway, I commend you for managing your life as you do. You may not have it all, but you have a lot and you seem to manage it well! 🙂
I am so glad to know something of your story, C. You know, you are the first person among the many I know from a large family to share how the challenge of keeping the balls up in the air (the parents buckled under) trickled down to the whole family: I would think so! I hope you are content? (No need to answer here.) As for myself — it is a daily, guarantee of a struggle! Not a day goes by where it is easy. I am behind on pages of readers to get back to, am trying to fit in some lessons this morning and pack food before my son and I head out for the day. And all week I’ve been wondering when I’ll get to put out my next post. If only I could stop shooting for thought-intensive (time-consuming) posts. Supportive, loving readers like you make the sweat all worth it. Thanks for your time here.
The only way I can imagine what your schedule is like is from remembering what it was like in my family while I was growing up. Of course, this doesn’t give me the full picture because I was observing from a child’s perspective. All I can say is more power to you! And to answer your question, yes I’m content. There have been times in my life when I when I longed for a child, but those longings have been few and far between. I think that I got to experience a bit of motherhood through helping to raise my younger siblings. This and being an aunt seem to be enough for me. My life is also rich and full in so many other ways that I’m content and happy. Life is good!
Celeste, I am SO happy to hear how you have embraced the fullness that has come to you in different colors and contours than it does for many. And yes: motherhood is what you experienced as the eldest. =)
This is really wonderful.
Who wouldn’t want to hear that? Thank you for sharing in my journey.
I now live in America, but I was born in Uganda, in the eastern part of Africa. When I was reading your life experience, it reminded me an intense time I had with my friend.
I did not encounter racial problems in Uganda until I became close friends with some white people in the USA. I introduced one of my friends in Uganda to my American friends and they also become his friends too. But their friendship didn’t grow well.
My friend had negative thoughts about white people, which I didn’t know. Our friends used to write to us, but for him it was hard to respond them their message, and for me I had no idea about what he is thinking about them, and I used to encourage him to respond their messages, because that helps our friends stay close.
Finally my friend told me that those people don’t want our friendship, just they have their hidden agenda! Then I told him that if you have that mentality your friendship with them is not going to work, because you will keep thinking negative about them.
And I told him that those people have been my friends for good time and we have been open to each other, and I don’t agree with you that they have hidden agent from me.
My friend asked me, do you love your friends? I said yes; also he asked me again, do you trust them? I said very so much. Since then my friend man stopped talking to me and he stopped even greeting me, even though we were good friends before.
I learned from this experience what prejudice is. It blames a group of people for something one person did. Or maybe they didn’t really do it, but we imagine they did. That is why I always recommend love and forgiveness — because that is the answer to all of the world’s problems, even racism.
All the best,
Thanks for sharing your story and experiences, W. Love your closing paragraph. Not sure why you commented under this post, when we have a whole series on race and culture underway, The Race Around the World. Thx for your time. Blessings.
Oopsie, I meant to comment on your post called “The Race: American Gypsy, Part 12”, but instead accidentally posted a comment under this post. I am going to read the Race Around the World as well.
Why on earth would you feel guilty when your husband gives you space to just be you? Everyone needs that space. Your husband needs his space too. A good marriage will always provide for maintaining the unique identity of each partner within that union and its obvious you must have a good marriage. Enjoy your space!
The guilt is an ongoing struggle, Ian. Something I almost wrote about again in my head even a few days ago. I’ve freed him up all these years for all his pursuits. He knows it’s my time now and he delights in my writing. But easier said than done. Time is my arch nemesis, and we could always be spending more family time. Even today I took care of my boy all day and was in the kitchen much of the time, barely got blog time in. I am very tired all the time, more so than I talk about. Thanks for the support.
I think I floated through life until I met Alex’s dad and the day she was born! I felt when they handed her to me as if I had been born again! I found myself experiencing life through tiny eyes and it was like I grew up all over again but this time in safety and providing a good foundation for my child. Alex’s dad worked all the time and I loved being a mom! My child then was diagnosed with a chronic illness at 2 yes old and my life became obsessed with keeping her alive! I didn’t care what I had to donor give up I just did it! As Alexanderia aged I realized my entire person was wrapped up in her!
I identify where you said your art on the inside of you needed a voice or that is what I read….by painful I mean I don’t share myself at all. Before I faded and was ok being invisible. Opening myself up and sharing my art, writing and photography is the tenderest part of me and it’s almost like a whisper or an exposed wound! It can only take a little bit of air at a time! So I wait and share and take baby steps! Professionally I am out there bold but personally I hold my inside me close and only share myself with those I feel God brings into my life. I want to make meaningful deposits into peoples loves and they mine. I don’t let negative desposits so I avoid them! 😄not because I’m afraid but because there are those like me tht just need a kind word because we have one to give and the other folks that want to fuss well, I see a butterfly or a lovely flower so I focus on that!
I love your blog because I like to clear my mind and think other thoughts that grow my heart bigger! 😄 I love the way you detail your life! Mine was/is that way down to the second and I like it that way, except for days when I just let my hair down and dance! We should all dance more don’t you think? 😄😄
I am so blessed, so privileged. I almost don’t have the words to describe the amazing foray into readers’ lives that happens here. Incredible stories you guys share. BB is just beautiful, M. I hope you feel safer and safer to share more deeply of yourself with us through your lovely art. I love the meaningful deposits you seek to make. I hate waste of anything and seek to make it worthwhile for anyone who would give me their time. And yes, I need to dance more. =)
Thank you for blessing me with your honesty and encouragement.