Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Blog Slog

5 Nov 07

Dear Jon,

It’s wonderful to hear your voice so full of excitement about your imminent release. I can only imagine how you must be feeling, after nearly six years of being told when to eat, sleep, go to bed, wake up, get a shower. It will be like getting your life back, and it’s going to be great experiencing it with you. …

… I want you to understand our feelings about handing over the blog to you, and our love, hate relationship with it. It was D’s idea and would never have existed without him, after reading the Baghdad Blogger, suggesting it to you.

We have tried to maintain it to the very best of our ability, which in the beginning was very limited. For the last five years we have spent hours each day sorting out your blogs and letters; filing them appropriately; choosing which blogs to put on; typing them up, editing (some of the original Xena & Co manuscripts would make even a seasoned sailor blush); re-reading, checking for errors and putting in the hyperlinks to previous blogs; reading the emails sent to writeinside, replying to the emails, dealing with the media and dealing with demands for links and blog improvements from yourself.

Initially I was the most active in maintaining it, but when I got too stressed, especially when I worked full time D got more involved. D even attended a website class at night school so he could learn how to improve the blog and deal with any problems himself rather than asking other people.

Although it is a bind for us and sometimes drives us mad, it has been a link to you that we may not have had if it had never existed. In the early days when you were in Maricopa County jails under the care of the 'good' sheriff, it was heartbreaking to read what you and other inmates were suffering. Your conversations with other prisoners and descriptions of life inside have made us laugh and cry. We have shared your imprisonment in a way that few relatives of inmates ever could.

Before you come home and take over I want you to realise what a big part of our lives it has become. It’s really been a part-time job for D & I. It is your blog and we are just conduits through which your words have been transmitted. But you must understand our mixed emotions. Although we will be happy to hand it over to you, I want you to be aware of our concerns for something which in a way has been our baby, which we gave birth to, have nurtured and seen mature. A metaphor for your development, perhaps?

All your readers are going to want to know how you fare on the outside, so I’m sure it’ll go from strength to strength. Whatever happens it will be completely yours.

And if I'm not harassed enough with your blog, I go and start one myself! ...

Copyright © 2007 Barbara Attwood

1 comment:

joannie said...

The reference about going from strength to strength is found in Psalm 84, one of my all-time favorites, and the context is this, "Blessed is the person whose strength is in You; in whose heart are the highways to Zion. Passing through the valley of weeping they make it a place of springs...they go from strength to strength-increasing in victorious power..." That is what I think has happened in your family. You've passed through the place of weeping and made it a spring of life for yourselves and other people. This will only continue for all of you, though I'm sure it will include some "frying pan" days. Chuckle. Lovely letter.

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