Why make this a tumblelog when I can use Tumblr?

(OK, time to try this again after WordPress got prickly with me and cast off my original post.)

You would have thought that BlogHer might have lit a fire under me to blog more. Instead, I found the prospect of blogging My Deepest and Most Profound Thoughts even more daunting. Especially when it dawned on me that I don’t have a lot of Deep and Profound Thoughts.

My use of the Minblr theme here kind of reflects my awareness of this. But why run to my WordPress interface when Twitter and Tumblr are, quite frankly, far more accessible for the quick and dirty thoughts that pop up in my head?

So you’ll find me continuing to spend most of my time on Twitter and, now, Tumblr. You’ll find feeds and links to both on the right.

I’m not abandoning this place entirely. I still want to use it, but honestly, I don’t have the time right now.

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Is BlogHer introvert-friendly?

I’m waiting for a session to start at BlogHer ’11. It doesn’t start for nearly another half-hour.

I really should be attempting to network, to get out and hand out business cards and schmooze. But I’m tired. I ate lunch alone to recoup my energy, and now I’m whiling away my time with a quick post, alone, as I wait.

More often than not, schmoozing is not my strongest suit. It exhausts me, and there are probably a few issues with self-esteem here. (“I’m neither girly nor Gaga enough for this gig,” I tweeted to a friend just now.)

It’s only Day 1 of this two-day geek girl extravaganza. It’s trying my resolve to be positive in all things. But I will enjoy this. BlogHer is big enough to have a niche even for me. It’ll happen. Even if I can’t network my way out of a paper bag.

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Gratuitous blog photo, Part 5.

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Gratuitous blog photo, Part 4.

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Gratuitous blog photo, Part 3.

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Gratuitous blog photo, Part 2.

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Ichthys-out-of-water syndrome.

“Depression presents itself as a realism regarding the rottenness of the world in general and the rottenness of your life in particular. But the realism is merely a mask for depression’s actual essence, which is an overwhelming estrangement from humanity. The more persuaded you are of your unique access to the rottenness, the more afraid you become of engaging with the world; and the less you engage with the world, the more perfidiously happy-faced the rest of humanity seems for continuing to engage with it.”

— Jonathan Franzen

I never feel fully at home anywhere until — maybe — I leave it behind. There have been a handful of times where I have come close to being comfortable and content where I am, but something always seems to keep me vaguely dissatisfied, lonely or alienated.

This is the case with just about everything in my life: work, church, even living arrangements and family. This is not to cast aspersions on any of those things, particularly my family, both immediate and extended. It seems to be the way I’m wired, despite any and all efforts on my part to find contentment wherever I am. Every moment feels as if I should be anyplace except that moment. It’s frustrating, and all the prayer and self-help I can muster can’t seem to completely budge me out of it.

Maybe vague dissatisfaction is supposed to be a good thing. Maybe it’s meant to keep me moving and avoid some kind of spiritual and mental inertia.

But I doubt that a chronic sense of alienation is how life is supposed to be for me. Or for anybody.

“The No. 1 problem in our world is alienation, rich versus poor, black versus white, labor versus management, conservative versus liberal, East versus West,” Billy Graham once said. “But Christ came to bring about reconciliation and peace.”

But if, in fact, Christ came to bring about reconciliation and peace — and I believe that He did — then why do believers like me still battle a sense of being a chronic outsider, particularly among other Christians?

Part of it might be the Franzen quote above; I’ve battled varying degrees of depression all my life, but for all its frustrations, I also consider it a gift for the insight it can bring. Still, I know my depressive tendencies can be a cloudy lens on life. But part of it may well be that in the largely evangelical crowd I run with in the ‘burbs, I’m a moderate-to-liberal type who doesn’t necessarily see same-sex marriage as a threat to my own heterosexual marriage. (That said, I still choose to worship at a conservative Anglican church, for reasons I’ve hinted at before.)

Whatever the root of my awkwardness and feelings of alienation, I am reminded of the consummate truth found in the hymnal I opened tonight during a late worship service that couldn’t come soon enough after a crummy day.

I’m a big fan of the old-school hymns. The lyrics of the first hymn tonight, “Great is Thy Faithfulness,” gave me a swift kick in the pants: “Thou changest not, Thy compassions they fail not; as Thou has been Thou forever wilt be.”

“My feelings don’t change the fact that I am with you always,” God says, “even in your alienation.”

Does that transform my feelings into a giddy stupor? No. But I take comfort in the fact that the isolation I might feel isn’t real, that God is with me in that darkness, no matter how detached and lonely life seems in the crowds: “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.

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