Happy Bloggity Birthday

A yeIMG_0185ar ago, I nervously took a risk. After an invitation to guest post over at Tim’s blog, I decided to collect a few of my thoughts and start a new blog of my own – and Bronwyn’s Corner was born.

Friends – I had NO IDEA what was coming. No idea that people would actually read my stuff. No idea that I would land up joining (and loving!) a most wonderful Writer’s Guild. No idea that I would start writing for other online publications.

I had never had any ambitions to be a “writer” – and so this past year has been one long, constant surprise. It has amazed me how much I’ve enjoyed it: writing feels like talking to friends and turning thoughts about life over with them as if we were drinking coffee together. I love that: it reminds me of my favorite parts of ministry.

Also – I had no idea how many online friends I would meet, and that some of them would turn into real life friends. I had no idea that I would get letters from readers saying “thanks, that’s just what I needed today.” Every time I get an email like that, it still amazes me.

And happy birthday to my little blog 🙂 For its birthday, my awesome friend Corrie helped me give it a make-over. Cute, don’t you think?

So thank you, friends – for reading and encouraging me to keep writing. Thanks for sharing my posts and telling friends about it. Thanks for leaving comments. Thanks for making this little corner of the internet feel, to me, like an extension of my living room: a place for grace, caffeine and laughter.

I am so grateful for you all.

The Buddy System

Scuba-diving school was intense. The instructors taught us how to manage our equipment, clear our masks, regulate our air flow and how to descend into the water slowly to give our bodies time to equalize under the pressure. We practiced in the pool, and after a few sessions we graduated to the ocean.

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Standing on the sandy Saldanha Bay beach, our instructor imparted one more lesson before we took the plunge: we could not dive safely unless we had a Buddy. We quickly paired up and studied the wetsuit-clad features of our new partners. These were the people we had to look out for underwater: were they handling the pressure changes? Were they safe? Were they close enough to reach if there was trouble? Every few minutes, we needed to check in with our Buddy. “All OK?”, I would ask with a signed thumbs up. “All OK,” my Buddy would signal back.

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Having buddies made diving safe.

Four months ago, when I started this blog, it felt a lot like scuba diving. There was so much new information, a new world to explore: the equipment was unfamiliar, my figurative mask needed clearing, I wasn’t sure how to control my breathing. In the excitement of the first few weeks, I dived in and quickly felt the pressure building even though I hadn’t ventured in very deeply.

That’s the tricky thing about deep water: the pressure increases quickly.

I was so thankful a few weeks later to have lunch with three women who had been writing for a lot longer than I had. They had perspective, encouragement, tips. They offered support and community. As it tuned out they were all members of the Redbud Writers Guild: a community of Christian women who are “fearlessly expanding the feminine voice in our churches, communities and culture.” I turned in my application the next day.

It seems fitting to me that the Redbud writers call each other “Buds”. Diving into writing, I need a buddy. I need someone to check: am I handling the pressure changes? Am I safe? Am I within arms reach if there is trouble? I need experienced buddies to watch and learn from, to see how they chart their courses and handle the currents. Social Media allows us a way to check in with each other: “you OK?” a Bud will ask. And fittingly, the facebook signal for reply is exactly the same as in diving:

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Having Buds makes blogging safe.

In a sea of sharks, I’m so glad I belong to my Buds.

 

This is day 5 of 31 Days of Belonging. Click here to see a list of other posts.
Photo credit: splash dive.com, liveandletsdive.com