I never thought I'd turn forty. Don't get me wrong, it's not like I assumed I'd die young, I merely envisioned myself in a state of eternal youth. Yet here I am, knocking on the door of four decades. Funny though, I am in that state of eternal youth, as I don't feel (and some may say act) like the vision of a forty year old "grown up" I have in my head.
What does that have to do with me starting a blog? Very little, really, I'm just establishing context. I decided that 2010 would be the "Year of Alison" (henceforth to be referred to as the YOA) and that the focus of my family -- that is my husband Jason, our dog Humu, and myself -- would be on things I want to do and challenges set forth for me. You know, the proverbial "it's all about me".
When I was a kid, I was a writer. Let me emphasize when I was a kid; I'm sure I've outgrown it. In my youth, my mom sent me to creative writing camp for a couple of weeks one summer. You guessed it, even the band camp kids were cooler than we were. How sorry a statement is that? (My apologies to band camp-ians everywhere, please see my disclaimer at the bottom of this site.) I stopped writing (the trauma of writing camp ridicule?), for no good reason other than I became interested in other things as a teenager. Almost two decades later, as a grad student, I was asked to write some book reviews for Discovery, the journal of the Vancouver Natural History Society. There, under the tutelage of a very erudite and patient editor, my interest in writing was rekindled; it bubbled, simmering slowly, under the surface for several more years. A couple of years ago I decided to go on a solo road trip for the summer and write about it. I discovered during that process that I am terrible at self-reflection, and needed to find a practice venue.
One thing I do know about myself is that I always have something to say. Generally, very few people listen. The idea of having a blog where I could say anything I want, on any topic, at any time, appealed to me. The added advantage is that my thoughts would be out in cyberspace for the opportunity for even more people to not listen to me! 'Start Blog' was an entry on my to-do list, which no matter how many things I cross off, never gets any shorter. The final kick in the buttocks came when a good friend, Kirsty, started a blog. We all know that "imitation" seems a much harsher idea than "inspiration", so Kirsty inspired me to start my own blog.
I have a confession to make: the sea turtle picture at the top is not mine. It is a Windows Vista wallpaper, and I hope that means it's in the public domain and I'm allowed to use it (even though I'm a mac user no less). My field of marine biology was mammals - specifically porpoises - however my true love has always been the honu, the green sea turtle. They represent wisdom and longevity to many oceanic cultures, plus are just pretty darn cool and beautiful. To me, they seem so peaceful. Anthropomorphize much?
I am making no statements about what I will write about. I am making no commitments as to when or how often I will post. I am planning to document the YOA, where I am hoping there will be adventures, good times, and personal challenges. To be honest, that's not much different than any-old-year in our household. But standing on the edge of the bank, looking over at age forty, I am seeking not only adventure but also some internal reflection on where I've been these past forty years (and believe me, what a long, strange trip that's been) and where the next forty-plus years will take me. Welcome, me, to the blogosphere, and welcome, you, to my blog.