I have a past.
I have a blogging past.
I have a file full of comments that go back to 2005 in the archives of an email account linked to my former blog.
I remember the first comment on any post I had written. From his home in Mexico City, a fellow blogger wrote about the intense admiration and love he felt for a priest. My long-ago past as a seminarian and what I wrote about my decision to abandon those early goals and to pursue a life alongside another man had snared this reader’s interest.
Google helped readers find me. I was not an overly cautious blogger when it came to naming organizations and parishes and schools that had figured in my life. I named internal conflicts that other people recognized. A number of bloggers wrote posts about my blog.
I wrote about a life that some people had not thought possible. I had a career that was not always a safe one to identify publicly if you were living with another man. I had a family who supported me and welcomed my partner. I had a spiritual life that provided the surest interpretive thread to connect a long-ago John with the person I had become.
I wrote about a life that readers occasionally admitted they envied and wanted. To be honest, I wanted people to envy it. I seemed to need the assurance that I had gotten a life that other people would want. I could weave musings about home life and fall in love with it all over again.
Writing Cabin goes back to the fall of 2007 when an anonymous reader of my former blog wrote a series of letters whose denunciatory message eventually reached a range of people, including my employer. I got cautious, I got careful. I have written here about that time. I contacted readers who had followed me for years and asked them to help me start afresh.
Since then my life has changed in significant ways. On the surface, mine is no longer an easy success story. Not everyone would want the kind of transition through which I have been moving.
I do, though.
I love where it is going while it is still hard to name where it is going.
It seems time to extend a hand to those who used to read what I wrote and whose writings had been part of my day. Maybe more than a few of us have learned lessons about courage that we never suspected we could handle.