I finally did it – I recovered access to my first blog. I wrote before in another post that I had once blogged under another name, that being Bernulf Oswin. The blog, A Heathen Blog – Expanding Inward, was opened on WordPress nearly nine years ago (Expanding Inward was my first attempt at blogging, originally hosted on blogspot before I transferred it to WordPress … so from it’s technical beginning, it has been nine years). After blogging for a couple years, I was diagnosed with bipolar disorder and not long after, I decided to retire the blog and concentrate more on managing and eventually overcoming my illness. I originally left the blog visible after retiring it; but for some reason I’m still not quite clear about, after a year or so, I decided to switch the blog to private. Around this time, I also went through a phase of frequently changing my e-mail addresses and passwords. I also maintained (using the word almost cynically) a few other blogs – but I wound up scrapping them all for various reasons until I decided to start Upon Raven Wings.
Two years ago and several e-mail addresses later, I thought it might be nice to have another look at the old blog and maybe move it out of private status. I had no intention of writing in that blog – I was in so many ways no longer the person who wrote that blog – but I thought it would be nice to make it accessible to the public again. I went to log in … and had forgotten my password! Not a problem, though, as far as WordPress was concerned – just click a button and a reset password e-mail will be sent to the e-mail account attached to the blog account. Hmmm … now which e-mail account did I wind up attaching the blog to, when I switched it to private? Good question. Better still, what were the passwords to the five possible accounts I narrowed that answer down to? I do not write down passwords, I do not use the same password for different things; and through a combination of illness and medications, my memory for such things from that far back was shot full of holes.
So, for the last two years, I have been trying to regain access to first the five e-mail accounts; then eventually to my old blog account. Now, after relentless sessions spent with online forms, trying to guess my way back into taking ownership of these accounts, I have regained access to Expanding Inward :-) I have transferred ownership to my current account, and moved it out of private status. I still do not intend to resume blogging in that blog. I will put a link to it in my sidebar, and in turn add a link to this blog from Expanding Inward’s sidebar; but much more than that, I do not intend to do. For me, it is now like a museum – a snapshot of where I was a decade ago.
Looking over that snapshot this evening has been an interesting experience. Seeing what has changed, what hasn’t … feeling so many different holes in my memory refilling, one post after the next. This hasn’t been what I would call a ‘full-circle’ experience … it has been more like feeling a sleeping, nearly forgotten chamber of my heart slowly resume its beating. Beltane being just a few days past, I can’t help but feel the timing of this as appropriate … this part of my history has been lying dormant, hibernating, for a long time. It has been shrouded and inaccessible. And now, as it emerges into the light, the memories it brings with it fill me with warmth. When I first started blogging, I searched Google for ‘heathen blog.’ There were results; but within the top 50, I was frustrated to learn that none of them had much to do with Heathenry. Expanding Inward was renamed to A Heathen Blog – Expanding Inward and moved to WordPress as a reaction to this lack of presence in the blogging community: I aimed to remedy the problem. When I retired the blog, Expanding Inward wasn’t the only actual Heathen blog that was in the top 10 results for ‘heathen blog’ in Google, and one or two of those blogs had moved ahead of my rank. Looking around today, that same search result comes back with its first page containing 10 blogs that actually pertain to Heathenry. Warmth and light, and a Beltane fulfilled!