An ironic series of events took place. Ever since I got clean and started sharing about my recovery on my personal Facebook, many, many people have told me that I should share my writing more often. I never really took it seriously because, like I said, writing really wasn’t my thing. During a trip to Seattle both in December and June, Jeffrey’s sister, Dani, really encouraged me to start a blog. We were laughing about how all I post on Facebook is pictures and videos of dogs and pieces of advice. I was joking around and said, “What would I even call it? Dogs and Other Unsolicited Advice?” We kind of looked at each other like, yeah that’s actually quite literally a perfect name. And I thought, “Okay, I can do this.” I have endless pictures and videos of the dogs, so that came quite naturally to start a group after a whole other set of dog lovers wanted to be able to follow their daily shenanigans. Of course, people were curious about how exactly one ends up with four dogs, so Dogs and Other Unsolicited Advice was born with the story that led to us becoming a pack.
Every day I post dog related content, but only every once in a while I throw in a long winded piece about my experience with something and end it with a little bit of advice – things that I’ve learned along my journey, but I always try to keep it dog related somehow. So, last week Jeffrey was talking to Dani and she said we need more Unsolicited Advice, and I agreed, but felt I can’t quite keep up. I asked the admins in my group if they would want to write a guest piece and one brave soul stepped up to the plate and wrote a beautiful story about a life experience of hers. She ended up deciding not to post it as her family members are part of the group and they did not know all the gruesome details about this time of her life. But the wonderful part about it was that she still shared it with the other admins and myself. I like to think that maybe that will help her heal some of the wounds she’s held on to for so long.
So, Saturday rolls around, and I’m scrolling through Facebook when Time Hop reminds me that on that day four years ago, I went to jail for the last time. I had a little free time so I decided to write about it, and as always the responses were overwhelming and supportive and loving and judgment free. My sister in law, Ali, messaged me and told me that I really need to consider writing a blog and get a website since the puppies have started to take on their own personality, who knows what could happen in the future! So I finally relented. I started writing on WordPress on Saturday. I only chose the basic free account because I wasn’t sure what this might entail and how committed I would really be. Plus, I’m trying to save all my money for our upcoming wedding and honeymoon! I posted my blog link in the Bristol & Gus group on Facebook because so many of you have been so supportive of my journey and I figured you might enjoy our story. And you did! Your encouragement and support gave me reason to think this just might be a good hobby for me.
Then, Jeffrey’s cousin, Jess, read my post about being in jail, she messaged me that same day and said, “You ever think about writing a book? You have a great flair for writing.” I told her how overwhelming the idea of a book is and she threw out the idea of just starting with a blog. I thought, “Well, funny you mention that. I started a WordPress today!” And she proceeded to tell me she has a paid account and is never going to use it so she would like to give it to me. She purchased a domain name just for us and deleted all her posts to give me a clean slate, then gave me the keys. I was humbled by her gesture. The paid account gives me more freedom to personalize the page how I want and just gives me more control over my content. Even though we moved so soon, I hope you all came along with us! The idea behind it won’t change a bit, just where we’re listed out there in the infinitely large internet! I literally wouldn’t have even started this if so many people didn’t love our babies and support my no holds bar writing about our lives. I have always been a numbers person, and to find writing so therapeutic has come as quite a shock. So, here’s to my family, both old and new, that give me a reason to follow not just a dream, but my passion.