WordPress has a feature that counts your blog entries. Guess what? This blog entry is number 1,000. Can you believe it? Reaching 1,000 blog entries is an amazing feat, so I thought I would use blog entry #1,000 for a look back.
I had no idea what blogging was when a friend told me that a website was looking to pay to people blog about adoption. I checked out the website and figured out that “blogging” meant writing short articles about adoption. I have always loved to write and decided to apply as a way to make some extra spending money.
As I learned how to blog for that site, a thought began to rattle around in the back of my head – what if I started a blog about healing from child abuse? I knew there were a lot of people who had been abused who were working through the healing process, so I figured there was an audience for it. However, I didn’t really know how to market a blog so people could find it.
At the time, I was still participating (although not as much as in prior years) at Isurvive, which is a message board for child abuse survivors. When I first found that site, I was mostly there to learn. Over the years, I had transitioned from student to mostly teacher. I realized that I kept posting about the same topics over and over again … shame, forgiveness, etc. I thought that perhaps I could turn that repetitive information into a blog, and then people could find the article when they needed it.
It took me a few months to build up the courage to start a blog about healing from child abuse. I honestly wasn’t sure anyone would read it. At the adoption site, professionals were marketing my blog. This would just be little ole me – a “nobody” with no credentials other than having been through the healing process myself. I finally decided that this blog could be a gift paying forward all of the support that I had received through Isurvive. If even one person benefited from the blog, then it would be worth writing.
I decided to call the blog “Blooming Lotus” because a blooming lotus had become my personal symbol of healing. I loved the metaphor of being planted in the muck and mire at the bottom of a pond but growing toward the sunlight and bringing beauty to the world despite my beginnings. I chose the pen name “Faith,” which I launched with my adoption blog, because it took a lot of faith for me to survive my life. The “Allen” came from my husband, who used the pen name “Allen” for an article he wrote professionally under a pen name.
I published my first blog entry on October 2, 2007. (Wow – Has it really been almost four years now!?!!) I started by defining what I wanted this blog to be – a place of hope and healing.
Since then, I moved from working for one adoption website to starting my own with partners. One of my partners taught me how to write in a way to increase my Google rankings, and, over time, this blog became a first stop for many topics that are not discussed much on the Internet. I have been honored to receive supportive messages thanking me from all over the world. I have been doubly honored to have numerous professional therapists refer my blog to their patients.
The best part has been getting to know my readers. I envisioned this blog as a place where I would share information in a one-way fashion, but the blog has evolved to a safe place for child abuse survivors to support one another. I never imagined how much I would personally receive from this blog. I thought it would be me paying it forward, but I receive just as much as I give.
Thank you all for being a part of this blog. When I was tossing around the idea of launching it four years ago, I never dreamed it would evolve into the place that it has. I feel incredibly blessed to be a part of it.
Photo credit: Faith Allen