A Blog and a Woman in Progress

‘To rest on one’s laurels’ – If someone rests on their laurels, they rely on their past achievements, rather than trying to achieve things now.

My blog has been on quite a journey. It started out as a blog about my life on my dream hobby farm with my dreamy husband. Or so I thought.

As I look back at my initial posts, I can see that I didn’t include my husband much. I thought that was because I wanted to respect his privacy. More than that, I felt like I was often an embarrassment to him. It was better for him not to be too publicly linked to me. I could hurt his career and his reputation as a cool dude.

He withdrew so gradually from me that I didn’t consciously notice. I made excuses for his behavior, as is my usual mode. I tried harder not to bother or annoy him, and did more things alone or with my friends.

I started blogging because I wanted things to change. I wanted to revitalize our marriage. I wanted to make our home this great place where friends and family would feel welcome. And my way of working through “stuff” and making changes is to write. I write until the story comes out the way that I want it to. Obviously, this tactic does not always work out as planned.

I also started the blog as a way of starting on a book I had in mind. A few months before my biological Dad died in late 2008, he asked me to write him letters about my life before he’d met me. I was reluctant to do that as I was torn between wanting to have this very “conversation” with him before it was too late, and worrying that it wasn’t a good time for him to know the truth of the effects of his decision to give me up for adoption.

My Dad died before I had a chance to write anything and that’s when the idea for writing a book called “Letters I Wish I’d Written to My Dad” was born and why I decided to call my blog Cowgirlbyproxy.

But after only a couple months of blogging, my dream turned into a nightmare of divorce. The focus of my blog went in a different direction – mainly a day-by-day, bleed-by-bleed account of my downfall and attempts to rise back up from the ashes doing such things as:

  • Learning how to hook up and pull the horse trailer by myself. 
  • I started trail riding on my own and eventually trail riding for an entire weekend with friends I met after I moved my horse Luke to a boarding facility.
  • I took up cross country skiing and started skijoring with Java and skiing with friends.
  • I started taking a lot of photos, which prompted me to want to learn more about photography and buy a better camera.
  • My dream home sold and I moved to a new house that I am working on changing from a place where I cry a lot into a place where I can feel inspired and happy.
  • A few household projects, like a fence around the yard, new floors, a deck repair and a new furnace, were completed soon after I moved in.
  • There are lots of projects being built in my brain – attempts to incorporate more nature into my surroundings, both inside and outside. Oh, and a stove that doesn’t keep having the flame go out and try to gas me to death would be nice…
  • I added a puppy to my menagerie and my attempts to become a better dog trainer and clicker user continue. (By the way, I have bought and tried every type of collar and harness known to man and have yet to meet one that I really like. So if some company out there wants to donate one for me to try and evaluate, I am totally game.)

  • I started worm composting and nurtured my own seedlings to plant in my new raised beds and pots.
  • I am working on raising my own herbs and learning how to use what I’m growing for seasoning and to make tea.
  • I would love to add chickens to the mix for the fresh eggs, bug control, and as another way of adding a more rural feel to my surroundings. But I’d need to convert my shed to a coop and do some other work that may be a bit too much to take on at this time. Maybe next year…
  • I spent the month of April 2011 writing daily poems, and I jaw off and on about writing a book and things I’m going to do to make that happen.
  • I applied for a writing grant and made it past the first cut. Unfortunately I didn’t win but at least I tried, and I made a few plans and discoveries in the process.
  • I went to an event where women could learn about and try mountain biking. I enjoyed it so much that I traded in my hybrid bike and started exploring other mountain bike trails.

So to summarize, at this point, my blog has progressed from a “cowgirl/farm life with my man” blog to a single woman doing… doing… doing what exactly?

That is the question. And trying to find the answer has sent me into a whole other down-spin of depression and prayer that I please not have to wake up and do this all over again tomorrow. Alas, I’m still here doing. But once again, what exactly am I doing?

Let’s start with this blog. This is not necessarily a blog about trail riding and horse stories. It is not a blog about my dogs and what I do as far as training and caring for them. It is not a blog about gardening and creating an urban farm. It is not a blog about a woman devastated by divorce and the loss of her dream life. It is not a blog about me as a writer or photographer. It is not even a journal about my day-to-day life.

This is a blog about a journey that I have no idea where it’s going to end up or even quite where I dream of it ending up. There is this whole “I am in my 50’s for cryin’ out loud!” undercurrent of suspense (or is it horror?) to all of this. As of two years ago, my life became the anti-matter of everything I’d hoped it would be at this point of my life. The question of what am I doing is about more than what am I doing with this blog. It’s about what am I going to do with the rest of my life?

Hopefully, someday I’ll be telling you about a story or essay I had published. And I’ll have a couple books on the sidebar that are available on Amazon. Maybe I’ll be helping other writer’s get their start. But more than anything, I hope this blog and my life will help someone who’s hurting know that even the most messed up of people can come through crisis after crisis and not only be okay, but be healed, whole, and happy. Because I’m hoping to prove this to myself.

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  1. This post, published on my birthday, Maery, is actually a gift to me, believe it or not. Across all these miles I want to give you a hug and say THANK YOU for being so transparent about your journey. I read every single word of this.

    “Making the best of what is” is the best gift you can give any of us whenever you write. We learn hope from you for today. It’s always for today because that’s all we have. Keep making today the day of healing and wholeness. You are an inspiration to us all.

    BTW, did you let Marcie know you’d love to join V&V? I would be honored to have you one of us.

  2. Ginnie – I hope you had a wonderful birthday! Thank you so much for your comments and your earlier email. As I said on V&V, you are my wise sage. As for your BTW, joining V&V would be a big step towards my dream! I’ll do as you suggest! Thank you for thinking of me.

  3. And that’s the truth… Maery Rose, I think I’ve been there, through everything you have described, as a reader. Your perspective is right on and “you’ve come a long way baby.” That was quite a list of things you have done in this short time. To me, even if you still cry, you are a much stronger person who is living a VERY full life. The best part…you know yourself, have an accurate perspective and can express yourself beautifully. I’m quite positive that you have inspired many. Keep it up. The first time I read your blog I came back again because you said you made “kick ass” coffee. That would be you and your attitude! Love it.

  4. Lori – Thank you. Your comments are always a spirit lifter and know that you have been part of the process. I’m going to pour myself another cup of that kick ass coffee now…

  5. “This blog is a journey” says it best. It’s yours to do as and take to where you want it to be. We are just along for the ride.

  6. Samantha – Thank you! Does this mean you don’t mind if the Brew Babes and I show up for a swim in your pool? We’ll wait until you have all the work done first though.

    Tammy – I’ve been checking out your blog, it looks like you’ve been having some great trail rides. So I’d like to be coming along on your rides!

  7. Well said! Every last word…and first and middle words, too. 🙂

    The fact that your blog is not about just one subject matter or focus is the main reason I love to come visit your blog. You always keep it real and I admire that greatly. Whenever I’ve tried to bare all on my blog I tend to get a few know-it-all types who try to ‘fix me’ and dissect everything I’m doing or have done, to correct me and show me the errors of my ways. sigh.
    I’m too thin-skinned for that, I suppose and have just shrunk away from sharing anything very personal this past year.

    You are an inspiration to me and many women. And I’m glad I stumbled upon your blog one day and that you’ve allowed me to follow along with your richly varied, interesting, heartfelt, thought-provoking, and inspiring journey.


  8. Maery this is such a great post! You have gone through a lot in a short period of time. When you read this post it really shows how strong you are! I really enjoy reading your blog and I do know that one day you will get that book written and published.

  9. Lisa – Thanks for your comments. They mean a lot. People sometimes think they are helping by giving advice when all you want is for someone to listen and accept your feelings. But don’t let that stop you from speaking your heart.

    Jill – If you believe it, I’ll believe it too!

  10. Thanks Maery Rose,

    By the way, I forgot to suggest an idea to you for halter situation you mentioned in this post.
    Have you tried using a horse web halter as a dog halter?

    The nose part of the halter fits the dog’s neck, while the jaw part fits the dog’s mid-section.


  11. Hey, Sometimes is it ok to just “be” you and to do the things that make you happy. I think sometimes people have to give themselves permission to be happy:)

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