BlogHer of the Week: Sweet Amandine
By Lisa Stone on August 10, 2009
BlogHer Original Post
"Well, hello," wrote Jess last January on her shiny new blog, Sweet Amandine. "It's strange introducing myself to a big white empty text box, but I suppose I have to start somewhere..."
Gathering speed, this 28-year-old graduate student found time to blog everything from dough beneath the nails to adaptations, such as chocolate chip cookies. Sweet Amandine weaved recipes through charming and disarming stories of love and friends and entertaining -- all while juggling her academic workload.
So it was a real surprise to learn this week that her tales of almost-lost keys and four-layer strawberry cream cake were Jess's blog-escape from a catastrophic illness and slow recovery.
Even though she never typed one word of it to her readers. Why?
"...I was tired of being upstaged by my illness. Here, in this big, white, open space, I could look away from the pain and fatigue, and begin to remember who I am. I could celebrate the people I loved, and what nourishes us. I could celebrate my life, my living. Because...this life of mine trembles with joy, beauty, and love. I can’t help but to see it, and take note."
What higher purpose for a blog than to claim--and underscore and celebrate--our true selves? After reading Jess's other posts about her full schedule and mad kitchen skillz, the occasional (and positively darling) dress and odes to friends, laced throughout with love for her husband Eli -- it's incredibly moving to watch her come out to her readers as a patient.
Facing a final operation, she blogs a thank-you note to the community in The Other Side:
"The way I see it, we’re always broken in one way or another. I just happened to wear my brokenness on the outside this year. Sweet Amandine gave me a place where I could feel whole in my brokenness. And this is where you come in. Although we have never met, by reading these pages, leaving sweet comments, and dropping the occasional e-mail in my box, you helped remind me who I am at a time when I felt least like myself. It’s hard to know how to thank someone for a thing like that. So I’ll just say thank you, and tell you that in those two little words lie galaxies of gratitude. Without you – all of you – this recovery would have looked very different. I shudder at the thought."
Brave woman. Inventive cook. Great writer. For this, Sweet Amandine is our BlogHer of the Week. Congrats Jess!
Thanks to everyone for continuing to send in your nominated posts.
Remember to nominate individual posts, not entire blogs, and keep them
coming! If you want to check out all the BlogHer of the Week posts, check out the BlogHer of the Week archive.
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