pond sunset


Hi! It’s been a while (a very long while), and I have missed writing. I have missed connecting with you. One day last week I was reading through old blog entries because I remembered I had written something about hope that I wanted to include in the book I am writing (did I just write that? “The book I am writing”? I suppose I did!). It’s been so long since I read many of these blog entries (sometimes I couldn’t even remember the name of the blog to search for them!) that I was almost able to read my essays as if in third person. And as I read, I thought, “Oh, I miss writing this way.” I also thought, “Oh, you know what? I kind of like this girl. She’s a bit of a mess, to be perfectly honest, but she’s empathic and kind and loves beauty and words and her family and God. She is sometimes embarrassingly honest, but it’s because she just desperately wants to connect—she wants to touch the tender places in other people to help them feel safe enough to exhale and say, “Me too.” She is also longing for other people to touch the tender places inside of her so she can also exhale and say, “Me too.”

And so here I am. I’m still a bit of a mess, to be perfectly honest, but those other things about me are still true, too.

I don’t know what I want to say here, exactly, so let’s just pretend that we are having coffee together after we haven’t seen each other in a long while. As we both wrap our hands around our warm coffee mugs, maybe things are a little awkward at first because it’s been a minute since we have connected.

So anyway…..


There’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately. Can I just ramble here for a bit?

I’ll just plow right through any awkward silences and dive right in. To be honest, I have had a year of feeling like my body has been kind of betraying me. First, there was the breast cancer scare (which was drawn out for what felt like a very long time thanks to a botched biopsy). Then there has been this thing with my thyroid being wonky and my numbers bumping about and wreaking havoc on my energy and my brain and then this week I found out that it’s maybe an autoimmune disease and then…goodness. That’s just been a lot. As I told a friend this week, “I’m used to being able to fix whatever might be wrong with me (which, thankfully, hasn’t been much) with exercise or eating well (or, when I am really trying, yoga and meditation), but this…is not that. I have found I don’t like that lack of control! I want to be able to fix whatever is wrong and then call it good.” And she replied, “This is real. Sending care and light to you.”

This is real.

I am so good at downplaying my experiences and feelings. As my mom will readily tell you, I am queen of “I’m fine.” As she will also readily tell you, she (as moms do) knows better.

So here’s what I want to tell you today: I’m not fine. And it’s real.

(Here’s where I also want to insert a qualifier like, “But I will be just fine!” Or maybe I could tell you a funny story. Or maybe I could toss a picture of a chicken here to distract you.)

(Okay fine. Here’s a chicken.)

But it’s the truth.

This is real.

I’m not exactly fine.

A messed up thyroid is no joke. I’m exhausted. all.the.time. And exhaustion breeds despair. And despair breeds, well, more despair.

The thing that I do know down in my bones to be true is this: I will be fine. I have a wonderful doctor. I have family and friends who love me. I have chickens and ducks and dogs and cats who will forever make me laugh even on the hardest of days.

But I guess I just want you to know, if things are hard with you right now, that it’s okay not to be fine. It’s real. And yes, you will quite likely be okay again. And no, I’m not saying you should wallow forever in despair. But sometimes…it’s okay to be…in whatever space that is and whatever mess that looks like.

And I guess I also want you to know that I’m here, too. 🤍

Love… 🤍





  1. Richard Brewer on January 7, 2022 at 3:39 pm

    From one Mess to another. Love your honesty. Love you.

    • Jill Clingan on January 7, 2022 at 10:54 pm

      Thank you. Truly. Love you, too.

  2. Evelyn Mercer on January 7, 2022 at 4:15 pm

    I’m with you, Girl! Hang in there!!!!!

    • Jill Clingan on January 7, 2022 at 10:53 pm

      Thank you! 🙂

  3. Phyllis Laurion on January 7, 2022 at 6:07 pm

    Your blog always gives me hope. I’m not ok either but I will be fine. I need to know I’m not alone in my feelings. Thank you so much for sharing youraelf

    • Jill Clingan on January 7, 2022 at 10:53 pm

      I know “not fine” is such a hard space to be in, but no, you are not alone. Hugs and prayers to you….

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