Thursday, November 04, 2010

You Wanted a Post

To be very honest to everyone out there. I have no idea if I'm continuing this blog.

For a few different reasons.

The first one would be that technically, the blog is over. How much can I really write about being sick and miracles and all this inspiring stuff? It's not that my life experiences haven't changed me a lot, it's only that since I was 16 I have been through more life experiences and as I get older and these things become more personal, there are just things I don't feel like posting.

To bring out my main point. I don't know what individual readers took out of my blog, but I'll tell you what I took from it.

When I started this site it was because I truly enjoyed posting and putting my experiences into words and making them come alive for others.

I loved the interaction and responses I got from people and was blown away by how powerful my journal became. My blog was pure fun.

The book and the speaking arrangements and my next book were all amazing experiences and I do not regret a single one.

I do understand that fame comes at a cost. As this is such, my decision must be about if I'm willing to pay this price.

One of the biggest costs of my "fame" is that writing has stopped being fun. I came to this blog to unwind and make people laugh and cry and have a good read. At some point I began to realize that when I have to deal with people stepping into my personal space, writing this blog isn't enjoyable anymore.

Yes, Miracle Ride is a very personal story. It is also a story that took place almost ten years ago. Although it is a story that deals with heavy medical issues and extremely personal experiences, I would venture to say that making public that part of my life isn't half as personal as telling anonymous bloggers some of the things my kids say. Not because they're really private, but because I deserve for readers to respect my privacy in my every day life.

I love my readers and I love to talk to you on a personal level and for you to feel like you know me and I'm winking back at you through my work. In my perfect world, that's the way it should be. That's the way it used to be.

Recently though, I had a few disturbing incidents where my privacy and personal life have been seriously breached. I was harassed and stalked and I suffered the indignity of having personal information bandied about because certain fans felt they were entitled to know these things about me. They felt that if I could share my cancer story with the world, what was wrong with sharing some other smaller details of my life today.

Let me tell you what's wrong. Other than the fact that what I share is for me alone to decide, I'm not sixteen anymore. I'm not an irresponsible teenager who loves life and has no one to answer to.

These days I am a mother and a wife and can count a few other titles I respond to. These days when someone stalks or threatens or harasses me and wastes my precious time, there are other people hurting.

These days, every time I get another comment on this blog asking when I plan on posting next, I flinch thinking about it. This blog was never meant to be a chore. It was never meant to become something I had to think ten times about because of the arguing I sometimes have to moderate between commentors and because of the way it will encourage readers to pry into my life.

So writing this blog has ceased being fun. It has stopped being an enjoyable medium for me to talk to fans.

I miss writing here, but I also miss the old naive me who thought that decent people respect boundaries.

So here you go. You wanted a post. I can't imagine this is the one you thought you would get, but it's a post nonetheless.

Please don't ask how much longer it will take. It may take forever to make up my mind. If you're so concerned about the time you're wasting checking up on me each day, subscribe to my posts and you'll be notifed immediately when I post next.


trying my luck said...

You sound really upset and I can understand why. I'm just a bit confused. Looking at comments from way back I realized that you had no problem answering private questions that some Anonymous commenters ask you. Maybe that is the reason why people took the guts to ask you some more questions, and they didn't know where the boundary is; in other words what is considered personal on your level and what not.

My advice to you, if your willing to listen, is that you should continue posting on more neutral topics, or/and just continue putting up pics of your kids. And if you do get nosy or hurtful comments just reject them adn don't put them up here so you don't have to answer. Thants the reason why you have the ability to approve or rejest any comment that is posted on your site.

Of course writing on neutral topics would not be as enjoyable to you, and as intresting to your readers, but if that's what you choose we'll respect your desicion.

J.A.P. said...

Trying: I am not talking about personal questions I have chosen to answer or reject. (yes I am fully aware of my moderating capabilities and don't think I haven't rejected my fair share)

I am talking about people following me home, harrassing me with phone calls, handing out private info,intruding into a very personal time in my life, approaching my kids and husband in the street, and literally destryoing my peace of mind.

I am not saying these problems arose from my blog, only that because of those people in my life I am unsure about whether I would like to continue my blog.

trying said...

Are you serious? I can't believe people would really do such things! They must have been really immature. Do you have any idea who they were? If you do then I leave it up to you to give it in to them, you’re the best for the job!!!
And how in the world did they get your unlisted #?

a fan said...

I really enjoyed both your books and the blog. I'm really sorry to hear how much you were harassed. Maybe you can continue posting neutral things like stories you wrote or just little tips and ideas for everyday life. I really enjoy your writing style.

Pondering... said...

I totally sympathize for you! You have a real right to be angry. Some people have no tact. You know how everyone describes people today, like they think movie stars, authors- anyone more famous than they- is some special creature that they wish to get closer to. People forget that we're all human and have lives of our own! I mean, by approaching your close family and calling you- let's say they got a little more personal info abt you- then what? yay they know what you made for supper! But come on- where does this get them in life? :)
these people are irrational and think they maybe will be special or famous too. But these are not a minority of people! We live in the USA after all, where celebrities are idol-ed.

Hope you work it all out soon. As much as I love your blog- i say for your sake to discontinue it. It seems like it's causing you more heartache than good and there's certainly no good from that! Maybe have a blog for members only who u invite!
good luck!

anon 1 said...

just leaving a comment to let you know how much your posts were enjoyed. sorry about all your harassment....not fun stuff.
thanks for all the inspiration you gave so far, and wishing you the strength to go further and further. your posts were missed, and will continue to be.
i'm awaiting your return, but till then, so long!

Wondering said...

I'm shocked at how people behave. I mean, I always knew there were nosy people out there, but I didn't realize to what extend. I don't think stopping this blog is gonna help because people more or less heard about you by now in any case. But maybe you can continue this blog on a less personal note. I will totally understand if you won't want to continue this blog, if all the joy went out of it, but I'll definitely be disappointed.

And, of course, if this blog became more of a duty than an outlet, you would want to stop it.

I hope that you don't decide to discontinue this blog, but if you do, I'd love it if you can put up one more post (sort of like a goodbye post).

All the best and lots of luck.

Site Watcher said...

Look how your site meter jumped, only because of one new post!

Anonymous said...

I was wondering whether I can use some of your Poems, or comedy skits (ie the Shidduch Spiel) in public, or is it copywrite? The poems are soo well written and bring out great points that I would like to read them for my class; the comedy's would be great for a Chanukah party intertainment.
Please reply.

Anonymous said...

Will you also be putting on hold your other blogs, or only this one?

J.A.P. said...

Anon 2:21pm: As my other blogs are by invitation only they are still open for their intended readers.

J.A.P. said...

Anon who wanted to know about the poems- you'd need to email me to the email address listed at the right of the site and ask me about specific titles. I don't want to give an overall "yes".

Thanks for the compliment!

Anonymous said...

It actually was an overall question since I don't have anything specific in mind at the moment, they are all great. but if I decide to use any of them I will definitely ask you before.
Thank you so much!

Oh... and your very Welcome!

mikimi said...

I've missed reading you but just thought you were busy being a mom, wife and writer. I never dreamed you were bring stalked!
please add me to your other blog. I miss reading it.

Anonymous said...

Even if you decide to stop posting on this blog, will you still keep it open for viewing or shut it down completely?

J.A.P. said...

Of course it'll be open for viewing!

Shira said...

Please continue posting! I miss your updates.You shouldn't have a problem postings thing like the winner of the contest entry, it's been almost a year, or putting up new pictures of your kiddies.
When you have decided whether you want to continue or not please let us know what your decision was.


J.A.P. said...

Shira, I already mentioned in an earlier comment somewhere on the blog that the contest with Targum is kind of null as of now. Targum is having some financial difficulties, havent paid any authors if years and the contest is the furthest thing from their minds.

Wondering said...

Hey, I totally forgot about the contest!
But I do definitely hope you continue posting! I love checking up on your blog and seeing something new. ANYTHIG......even a comment I haven't seen yet.

Anonymous said...

Can i also be added to your other blogs?

J.A.P. said...

For those asking and for those who are about to ask: my other blogs are for family only. There was a time when others were also able to view the blog but at this time I must respect the privacy of those close to me. Sorry.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, a while ago I got into one of your other blogs, by accident, on the first try ( i guess you were doing some changes then) I just briefly looked through your last post for 2 minutes and decided to get back to it later on in the day. If I would have known its password protected and i wont be able to get in to it again i would have stayed on for hours looking through all posts... :-(

J.A.P. said...

CL - I'm not going to post your comment just because it sounds like you don't really want it posted.

But to respond- I never pretended to be thick skinned. I'm in fact a very sensitive person and I think that's what makes my writing easy to identify with. The humor as a cover up for something more tender and unsure under the surface.

Another thing- validated? LOL. At least you made me laugh. You're right. I am a mother and a wife and I have other responsibilites these days and the blog comes only second (or really twenty fifth) to the other important things in my life. But when you consider the total disrespect I had to put up with recently it's not worth anything at all. Even if I were not at this "other" stage in my life.

And please email me about where we met? Im terrible with names and remembering them, but I never forget conversations and faces.

Thanks again for the comment.

Minnie said...

So because you were harassed by some immature people does that mean we, some normal decent fans who are benifiting from this blog, have to suffer because of that?
In regard to your other concern,who says you only have to write about miracles, and inspiring stuff? I think that most people that visit this blog come here to unwind and have a good laugh. If they're here for some amazing lecture with a powerful lesson... well let them learn that they've come to the wrong place. there are many other places where they can find that.
Oh, and BTW, you were the one who replied to (i think it was) Wonderings comment that you are by far not out of post ideas. So even if you are still hesitent I'm sure you can find SOMETHING that is not to personal, yet not to boring and has some sort of lesson to go along with it.
If the true reason you aren't posting is that you don't have time you can openly admit it. I'm sure everyone will be satisfied even if you only post once a month.

I apologize if this came out a bit stronger than intended, but that just shows how badly I want this blog to continue.

itsagift said...

Just wanted to tell you that this post is extremely well-written. I'm so sorry that you have to deal with all those people who won't give you your space and keep pressuring you for new blog posts.

People should be more understanding and should stop bothering you and making you feel guilty for not making this blog your #1 priority.

The choice is yours and yours alone and if you decide to stop this blog I respect your decision. You put yourself out there for so many people and this is what you get in response?! Shame on [.....]!

Good luck with all those comments! ;-)

J.A.P. said...

Minnie, YES sometimes a few immature people can ruin it for everyone else. I dont filter who reads my blog and therefore while you may be a very decent person, some others are not and I am suffering. I can live with the annoyance of some fans but I can't live with what I;ve been having to put up with lately.

Another thing- Ive already said numerous times that I really dont have time. See the title of my last post. I make no secret of my busy life and as such it's quite obvious that this blog is not my first priority. I make no effor to hide this.

And like I said in my post- my vote is still out on whether or not I care to continue this blog, but your comments are not going to afect my decision.

Wondering said...

I think Minnie's comment came out harsher than she meant. Of course everyone respects that it's your decision whether or not to continue this blog. I think Minnie, & a bunch of others, just found this blog to be a GREAT outlet, and want it to continue.

Of course it's not your duty to provide an outlet for the online Jewish world out there. She just means to say that if you have interesting things to post, and you can give us an interesting blog to read, why not? Just because of some immature nuts? But it's up to you, and it definitely makes sense that having people haress you would make you reconsider, even if they are just a few nuts.

Your blog readers/commenters can't force you to keep this blog open. We can in no way make the decision. But maybe it means something to you that so many people are enjoying your blog, and maybe that will affect your decision.

I am reading your blog for over a year already and have gone back to read everything that wasn't archived, plus I read both your books and some articles you wrote for magazines and I really immensely enjoy your writing. However I have never commented here and truthfully, I never thought I would or planned on commenting. It's only because I want this blog to continue that I'm commenting, because I want you to know how much I enjoy it.

That's what I mean about your readers/commenters not being able to affect your decision. I don't think that by commenting that your a scaredy cat, liar, exagerater, etc., is going to have you decide to post again. ABSOLUTELY NOT! But I hope that maybe the fact that so many people enjoy your blog can shift your decision.

Again, it's YOUR BLOG & YOUR DECISION. The only thing I'm trying to accomplish by commenting here, is to let you know how much I enjoy your blog.

Thanks for a great blog!

minnie said...

Wondering, you took the words out of my mouth. Yes, I apologize if the comment came out a bit harsh. Although its your decision, and yours only, whether you want to continue this blog, I do think that our comments will have some sort of effect on your final decision. Hey, maybe I should go around with a petition to all blog readers and have them sign it...

Chaya's Mother said...

Well- u'r posts are loved, the laughs were fun and healthy...your fans have definitely spoken. I'm sure you'll take that with you whether or not you decide to keep the blog going. And if the possibility exists for it to still be healthy and good for YOU to keep posting, I'm sure you'll let us know in your own good time! Hatzlocha and may you only have nachas and joy in all you do.

FANtastic said...

What about your new Novel, is that on hold or are you anywhere close to finishing it?

I really miss your posts, hope you'll be back here sometime soon!

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Did you take off the commetn section on purpose, for your newest post?

IN comments to your post 'HEAR ME ROAR' said...

Well, I don't know if I would recognize your voice... But your face would definetly strike out to me, even among a huge crowd.

Anonymous said...

Glad to see your back with the same humor and spunk as before ( which is quite a nice few months ago)!!
Thanks for your latest post and cant wait for more!
BTW, whats the point of taking off the comment section from your last post if all the others are still on adn people can still comment anyway?

Wondering said...

Is the comment section of your latest post off on purpose?
I guess I'll comment here instead.
Great Post,
& by the way, I think I'd recognize your voice too.

Anonymous said...

Whats the deal with the comments? If you don't want to have any, take it off your blog completely. If you do, why is it missing on your last post? It can get quite confusing like this.

Oh and I loved your post, the last one, I mean the one with the title "Hear Me Roar". Actually I love all of them but thats the last one, as of now.

Bayla said...

Why don't you ever put up pictures of your mother? You make her sound like such a sweet, to be admired women. If you don't have any put up pictures from your scrapbook, I'm sure she's on some of that pictures!

J.A.P. said...

Bayla, its because I'm a horrible daughter lol. My mother is in exactly two pictures in my scrapbook but they're not great ones. And since I got married I have zero pics with her- mostly we see each other on Shabbos. Maybe I can dig up one from my brothers wedding...?

Or maybe I should just start taking more pictures with her :-) She is an amazing person.

Bayla said...

Yep, she's amazing, and your not such a bad daughter if you think so highly of her, and praise her in public lol (my mother doesn'nt even get this from me!). And the reason why she's not in most of your pictures is probably because she was the one to take them! So if you can find a picture of her, that would be great. You can post the scrapbook pictures, even though you say they're not so great.
BTW can you also post some updated pictures of your kids? I'm sure the've grown in the past half a year!

sdc rox said...

How were you able to keep such an upbeat attitude throughout? so many close relatives of mine are getting sick and dying-even if i was never sick-its still really hard to have a positive attitude :(