Tugging Strings: Is It the End?

Over the past 4+ years since I started this little blog, I have made some drastic changes, have gone through amazing adventures and become part of a community that I never thought I’d integrate into.  It has been an experience completely worth while for sure, but some things just have to change.

I have been contemplating this for months, worrying about what people would think, how many friends I would lose, how it would affect me at home being alone most of the time, and so many more things.  I’ve been tugging at two different ends of a string to figure out where to go.

As much as I love blogging, my heart is not into it.  I used to blog every day without fail, posting about the foods that I ate and how my day went.  I moved onto other things like fundraising, training for a marathon, Birding Thursday, environmental awareness and other things that I thought would help me connect with people.  I was hoping to use the blog to make people more aware of the environment and how they could support it and stop destroying it, but I kept getting shot down and it hurt.  It broke my heart more and more every time I got an email telling me birds were stupid and that my job wasn’t anything to be considered real employment or important.


I have kept much of this on the down-low because I really love all the connections that I have made here.  I love all the good things that I get out of the blog, but the negative things are really starting to pull me away.  Everyday that I find something that I want to talk about I fear the responses that I’ll get.

As far as recovery goes, the biggest and greatest thing I have been trying to tackle this year is getting over the body dysmorphia and it has not been going well at all.  I know I have used my Side Notes to let out my emotions about those matters but even those are getting thrown in the mud.  Everything has been welling up inside but with no where to go but my counselor…and then at this point I don’t talk to her anymore because I moved away.

So where does this leave me?  I truly don’t know.  I may show up here and there, or not.  I may just disappear forever.  Sometimes I think that no one will even notice that I wasn’t posting any more and really I can’t blame them because the blog feels so, lame. I just don’t know what to do about it anymore…

For now, I’m going on a prolonged hiatus…Maybe I’ll come back, maybe I won’t.  Hopefully I’ll come back, but we’ll see.

So, I’m off to try and heal things…myself, the environment, etc.

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29 Responses to Tugging Strings: Is It the End?

  1. Sana says:

    People sent you nasty e-mails??? Whattt?

  2. gliding calm says:

    ugh! im so sorry for the hateful comments! that’s really such a frustrating thing about the blog world! Personally, I believe the environment (/ OUR WORLD) needs more people like you (!!!)- people that care AND that are taking action. But your feelings are valid, and all I can say is that I support you! Wishing you peace and good luck, and at least I know I can stay in touch via facebook! And if you return, we’ll always be here, waiting!

    Lots of love,

  3. Oh, Melissa. I didn’t fully comprehend until now that the negativity had spread to the environment and your JOB. I don’t understand how people can be so cruel – especially when they are so obviously wrong! Your commitment and passion for what you do is truly inspiring and has a huge impact, and I am so sorry to hear that people are continually trying to bring you down.

    Of course I hope you know that I will miss you dearly in the blogosphere if you decide not to write anymore – but fortunately our friendship goes far beyond posts and food. Whatever you decide, I support you 100% and know that your readers – the many who love and adore you, not the malicious ones who have no place here – will be behind you no matter what. Your presence in the blogging world is important, but your happiness and life outside of blogging is much more so.

    I love you and look forward to chatting this week. <3

  4. RunEatRepeat says:

    Take care of you, your friends will be here when you need us :)

  5. Heather says:

    Best of luck Melissa!

  6. Jade says:

    Melissa, I’m sorry to hear that you have been sent hurtful comments…especially considering how much effort and passion you put into your life and your job–your blog really demonstrates the commitment you have to bettering our earth!
    Let me know when you will be in the area, because I’m still interested in a birding adventure!
    Take care, and don’t let negative people influence your outlook on life! There’s far too much beauty to bother with rude and selfish people.

  7. Joy says:

    Ohhh Melissa
    I, for one, will notice your absence and will miss you. I love your birding series and I think what you do for a living makes a huge difference. I’m so sorry that people suck! Apparently they were not brought up by mothers like my own who say – if you can’t say anything nice then shut up! Take (good) care of you and I do hope you’ll be back. And really good luck fighting the bdd it’s a beast!

  8. Gabriela says:

    Aw Melissa! I think it’s totally natural for blogs to evolve along with their writers, or to end altogether because of changes in people’s lives. I think if blogging is becoming a negative factor in your life, then you should absolutely stop, but do it because YOU want to, not because of anyone else. You have a passion for what you do with the environment, and I think that’s a really beautiful thing. Good luck as you decide what’s best for you, my dear :)

  9. CaitlinHTP says:

    i still read. i will miss you. i’m sorry i didn’t send more nice emails in light of learning you received so many crappy ones. evidence that we should tell people how awesome they are all the time!

  10. Krista says:

    I just don’t understand the need for nastiness! Some people just don’t have manners, I guess. I will be sad to see you go, but totally understand your need for space from the blog. Hopefully we’ll see some updates here and there….and some Honey pics! (((HUGS))) Best wishes, Melissa!

  11. Maggie says:

    I’m sorry people were sending you hateful emails…and, in case you ever doubt it, your jobs are definitely real employment and necessary, honest work!! One of the things that I dislike the most about the internet is how easy it makes being mean…many people write things in comments on blogs that they would never say to that person’s face, but the internet makes it so impersonal, that they can get away with being awful.

    I will miss hearing and seeing your adventures, but I also fully support your decision to do what YOU need. And it sounds as though leaving the blog-posting world for a while is what you need. I’m sending you a big, giant hug from here in western Nebraska where the male western meadowlarks are singing their little, feathery hearts out.

  12. Natalie Rae says:

    Hi Melissa! I have been a reader for over three years- I always loved your candidness and willingness to not pretend you were “fine” all the time. You have very different interests then I do, but that never stopped me from reading :) I always am happy when I spot that you have written a new post- even though lately they have been sparse ;) I can’t believe people actually spend time writing you negatives!

    See you when I see you! Even though I hope it is often… I need updates! :)

  13. oh love this makes me so sad. People are strange and it’s unfortunate that they would feel the need to their own aggression out on you. i hope that even if you choose not to blog you stay active in other social media cause I love following your adventurous life

  14. Rose says:

    That’s such a shame. I’m sorry to hear that people can be so uncouth. For what it’s worth – I’ve been reading along with you for nearly 4 years at this point, and I’ve always appreciated and admired your honesty – along with your “go get ‘em” attitude (it’s infectious). But I completely understand growing out of a space; it happened to me! Sometimes we change, and we need new digs that feel comfortable. Or, we just need sometime away from the words ‘n such to deal with our own emotions, struggles, and accomplishments. Do your thing, girl. I know you won’t be far away or unreachable.

  15. :( I’ve been missing you but totally understand that things change. Know that we all love you!!

  16. We wish you all the best in the next chapter in your life! We know whatever you do it will be great! We are so sad to see you leaving the blogging world, but totally understand. And so sorry about you receiving nasty comments and emails! You definitely do not deserve that because you are truly an amazing person who does great things for the world! We are so proud of you and so honored to have met you before. Hopefully our paths will cross again and we can hang out again! sending lots of hugs your way
    Lori and Michelle

  17. Biz says:

    Mel, I am so sorry people leave you nasty comments – that is just totally unacceptable and if I could find them I would beat the shit of them. Yep, I am a bad ass like that!

    I think the worst comment I’ve ever gotten is that I use too many exclamation points.

    I was just trying to lighten the subject – I wish there was some way I could let you see yourself through my eyes: you are strong, beautiful and smart. You have so much going for you – the fact that you can start new jobs in new cities, juggle a relationship and try to stay healthy – I’d be proud to call you my daughter!

    Big hugs – and seriously, if you never blog another post, I am always willing to listen via email!

  18. Carey says:

    I always enjoyed reading your blog, you kept it real and I appreciate that as a characteristic in a person, I will miss your voice but totally understand the need to step away, I did so myself. There are a lot of haters out there in this world unfortunately. Look for the beauty, be yourself and love yourself, don’t worry about what other people think, especially the virtual ones out on the net, focus on the “real” people in your life, the people you can see and touch and talk with in person, your friends, family. The internet will always be around if you want it, do what you want to do, follow your heart and take care of yourself first and foremost.

  19. Kim says:

    I will certainly notice if you disappear!

    Anyone who says your job is “stupid” or “unimportant” needs to take a good, long look at themselves. I applaud you for being so open and honest on a blog… that takes a lot of guts, and it’s something I couldn’t do. And your job IS important – you know that – and so are YOU.

    I hope you stay, but you need to do what is best for you. If stepping away for awhile will make things better, then do that. Be good to yourself and surround yourself with supportive people. I don’t know where you are right now, but I’m in No. Co. San Diego if you ever want to talk.


  20. Jenna says:

    I’ll miss your blog, but do what you need to for you. If you come to the Seattle area, know you have a place to crash, or maybe we’ll catch each other at home someday… We should have a reunion coming up soon-ish- yikes!

  21. First, I don’t like mean people. I loved your birding posts — and thought it was awesome that your shared your love for birds / environment with us. I will miss seeing you around here, but I’m hoping we get together with Bobbi in real life soon.

    Keep your chin up. And keep doing what you love. And screw those haters! We love you!

  22. Christina says:

    I don’t know what it’s like to continually blog about topics close to your heart and be shot down, but I’m sorry that happened to you. Your blog is personal to you, though people don’t always get that.
    I hope that you’ll do well, Melissa. I enjoyed reading about your job – it’s unique and not one I hear about often. If you ever need someone to talk to, feel free to send me an email.

  23. Alli says:


    I’m so sorry that you have been receiving unwarranted, insensitive, and just plaid STUPID e-mails from boring, ignorant people. You have one of the most interesting and unique jobs that I have ever heard and/or read about. Your passion for your job and birding/the environment in general shines through in your writing. I have very much enjoyed reading your blog over the past 2 or so years, although I am always a rare commenter.

    I wish you and Whit the best of luck together. You seem like a perfectly-matched, happy, and beautiful couple who both love and enjoy nature. Best of luck with whichever job you decide to take next – on whatever continent it may be! :-) As long as you are surrounded by nature, I am sure that you will live a fulfilling life.

    I do hope that you will return to your blog one day when you feel more supported and up to it. I enjoy reading about your struggles with ED, as I have many related issues of my own, but it’s always refreshing to read little tidbits about Hawaii (I love Kauai, BTW – I went last summer!) and birding. Things I never would have thought about had I not kept up with your blog on Google Reader.

    Take care, Melissa :-)

    – Alli

  24. Kristine says:

    I haven’t commented much on your blog, but I do follow it and will miss it. I’m really sorry people sent you hurtful emails and I can understand why that has affected your desire to blog. I will never comprehend why some people feel it’s OK to be intentionally hurtful. Anyway, I just wanted you to know that your hiatus (whether temporary or permanent) will not be unnoticed. I hope you find peace and happiness :-).

  25. Gina says:

    Hi Melissa,
    I have been reading your blog for over a year now. Yours was the first I found that really spoke to my fears and anxiety. I was also amazed that you to find that you are a wildlife biologist, because I am too, and I primarily work with birds also. I won’t even get into defending your job (really, birds are stupid? that doesn’t even make sense) but I do want to remind you to check the job boards, talk to land managers, read the papers to see that yes, your job is real.
    I hope you will give some thought to the “externals” in your life right now- you are living out of a hotel without access to some of your safety nets- it is normal to feel anxious and the %^&$%# of the internet won’t help.
    But please, don’t say that is the story of your life. They are NOT the story of your life. The story of your life is far more gentle and beautiful, compassionate and hopeful. The petty cruelty is the story of THEIR lives. How sad.

  26. Adrienne says:

    I started reading your blog exactly a year ago when I decided to start recovery from my ED. Your posts are so relatable and make me feel like recovery is possible and that no matter how long it takes, it’s worth sticking with it every day (especially as I’m going through a rough patch now). Your passion for your job and for life in general is fantastic and I’ve loved following your story. I am so happy for you that you’ve been able to meet a great guy. I hope that things with your job, family (and kitty!), and recovery only get better. Feel free to email me any time, I’m a bit shy about commenting but am always up for an email. Best of luck :)

  27. Martine says:

    Hi Melissa,
    I fund your blog by accident, quite some time ago, and I have been coming back ever since, just because you are the kind of brave person that battles her problems. You remind me of my little sister, who has been struggling with severe depressions and other issues for years, and also never gives up.
    But I do understand that constant criticism does not help at all.
    Perhaps a personal journal, including pictures of your work, just like on the blog, would be an idea for you. You still get to keep a record of your life, which you can look back on, but just on paper, just for you, without any negativism.
    I wish you all the very best. M. from Belgium.

  28. Emily says:


    To have the wonderful privilege of working with you, is an understatement.

    Your honesty, thoughtfulness, down-to-earth approachable personality, and ability to remain totally zen while doing all of the aforementioned is inspiring. It is difficult to be affected by a lifelong illness and still be willing to pour your heart and soul into explaining it for the world to see.

    I admire your courage; and again your honesty. I don’t find in life enough women (or men) who have the courage to speak factual, from experience honesty- no matter what the subject is.

    In regards to the environment: I truly believe those who have sent you mean-spirited, uneducated, ignorant comments about being a biologist stems from many things. One of those being the inability to stop for one second, step out of your shoes and step into someone else’s shoes- even if that someone is (shocker) an animal. Because they don’t talk, buy Marc Jacobs, look like a supermodel and make money means they aren’t important, right? I think another reason for the comments is that many people don’t have the capability of realizing that the effects of the things they do many not be a palpable or immediate- that it’s made up! Or that they don’t care because it isn’t going to happen to them right that second (that they can see).

    “Treat the earth well: it was not given to you by your parents, it was loaned to you by your children. We do not inherit the Earth from our Ancestors, we borrow it from our Children.”

    Perhaps if they reminded themselves of that- it would be different.

    There are many folks who equate “Biologist” with “extremist”. They are sorely mistaken and completely ignorant of the truth. It always amazes me the amount of brass balls folks acquire when sitting in front of a computer- they have the chutzpah to say anything regardless of how it might feel.

    So in spite of all of those who do not support what you do or say, whether it be out of ignorance, cruelty or reasons unknown- keep on keepin’ on. One time, one post, one emotion, feeling or honest opinion on ED or the environment could save someone or inspire them. You never know.

    Remember, you’re a special, special woman. Your intelligence, honesty and “real”-ness is refreshing, and quite frankly a rarity these days.

    Thank you.


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