I started my first blog in 2003. Prior to that I had other websites. One where I sold things, one for my wedding, even a little e-zine. All of my previous websites had been created for something. To sell something or to inform someone. When I joined LiveJournal in 2003, it was just to bitch and share things with my online friends. I didn’t even tell my friends in real life about it. I just started following people I thought were cool, people I found with similar interests, and we became friends.
Most of those people that I found online waaaay back then, are still people I consider my friends today (While I have jettisoned the people I was friends with in real life, funny that). We interact through the new forms of social media, Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter. I met my dearest friends through my blog, and for that I feel so lucky.
I wrote some kind of blog pretty regularly until 2013. Writing online was a place for me to share my thoughts on all sorts of things. A lot of the time I was only talking to a few people, but they were people I care about and it was a fun way to converse with them. I didn’t delve into really personal issues, but I could share my feelings about being a new mother and a feminist. About being a crafter and a thinking person.
My writing began to dry up as my life got more complicated. My kids were getting older, my husband and I were having financial issues, and really, how many times can you write about how stressed you are about money? I know some people can spin it into something to say, but I was so depressed, I had a really hard time keeping it together in the real world, let alone the blogosphere.
Then in December of 2013 my dad died very suddenly. He hadn’t been sick. One day he was there, and the next moment he was not. I spent time with him constantly. We hung out at least once or twice a week. To say that my world was obliterated would not be understating it. My brain went offline, and so did I.
Only recently, almost two years later, have I been feeling the itch to write. I’ve been having a lot of little creative blooms pop through, and I need somewhere to share them.
There have been times in my life when I have needed to start fresh. I started my first website all those years ago as “KiKi’s Kitsch Corner.” Then I wrote at “Two Cheeseballs” which was a continuation of my wedding website. When I had babies, I decided to start fresh with “Bucktooth Mama,” and now, now I need something new once more.
Every time I have had an opportunity to share online, I have never wanted to use my name as my “handle.” I can’t explain it, but it didn’t feel authentic. Or maybe it just felt way too vulnerable. I liked the idea of hiding behind the moniker of Kiki or a cheeseball, or Bucktooth Mama. It was like a little shield, a place to hide away from the judgement of other people. It’s like I was kind of saying, “Hey, If you don’t agree with me on this idea, that’s cool, I mean, I didn’t even put my name on it! I only halfheartedly commit to it!” Or at least looking back, that’s how I see it now. It was a way to be only partially invested.
I am so SO rusty with my writing skills. I don’t know if they will ever fully come back online. There’s only one way to find out though, and this time, I feel like doing it as me. So I don’t have any name to hide behind. Just the one I go by.
Here I am. I’m Melissa Nelson-Stippich. (Oh my gosh, that feels really weird and naked to write! Seriously. So weird.)