Originally posted on September 30, 2022
Updated on August 8, 2023
When will I learn? I know from experience that being lax, being inattentive to Righting The Ship, only creates problems.
Over these many months, I have read the emails telling me that many different people, from many parts of the world, were trying to hack into my site. I have also read the emails telling me that plugins were being successfully updated. Still, because I was extremely unmotivated to write or to properly maintain Righting The Ship, I made no effort to login. The result? When I did try to login, I could not.
I have only myself to blame for this. Even though I know that a website is not a “set it and forget it” kind of thing, I did just that. I have paid a price for this laxity
Back in September 2022, I wrote that changes to my medication were taking effect. Sadly, they had too much effect. They took away my motivation and ability to write. Since I was not writing, I allowed Righting The Ship to wither. To be honest, visiting the site was painful, merely serving to remind me of that loss. My ship, as it were, was not righted.
I did not like this effect. Not one teeny tiny bit. I wanted a change. However, my psychiatrist was closing his practice leaving me in limbo. Eventually I was assigned a new psychiatrist with whom I shared my desire to effect change. To his credit my new psychiatrist listened and together we crafted a plan.
Over many months I titrated off one medication while slightly increasing the dosage of another. It is this change that has reawakened my interest in Righting The Ship and my ability to write.
I am, once again, re-creating Righting The Ship. I am, once again, choosing which plugins to install. Once more I am editing and republishing old content and recreating the appearance of this blog. In this I have had some surprising successes. My site’s widgets all look the same. I am still not sure how I did that! And I have finally created a separate folder for all my writing (backed up to multiple locations).
So now I set myself to work. Old content will be refreshed, updated, and republished. Additional content is being written. In fact, I have outlines for five new pieces and I am researching to develop a sixth.
As I mentioned above, the backend of the site is also receiving renewed attention. The many attempts to hack into Righting The Ship showed me that my security strategy was partially robust. Yes, it did prevent hacks, but by automatically updating plugins I took away my ability to ensure that any update would not break the site. I will update, true, but I will now do it in a controlled manner. I do not want to lose access to the site again.
I continue to learn. I have learned a bit about what not to do as much as I have learned about what to do to maintain a website. Most importantly, I am reminded not to be so lax.
Righting the Ship is important to me. That is why it was so painful when I could not write. Practically speaking, this site continues to be a bellwether, a signal, about my mental health. It is one of the tools I can use, when I am able, to better that mental health. But like all online tools, it has security and other risks that must be watched and accounted for. Doing this not only helps my site, but it helps my overall wellbeing.
Currently, it is a win-win. All this activity helps me by giving me a focus point, giving me a distraction, taking my mind away from the troubles of the world. For those moments I am in a safe bubble, able to relax and release. I can ground myself and recharge.
It reminds me of the fragility of my mental health, and the strength of my resilience. Self-advocacy, while not always as possible as we would like, is essential. In this case, it is only by advocating for myself that a medication was removed from my treatment. This blog, and I, gained new life.
Yes, I was lax. I was also lucky. I have re-learned a valuable lesson and improved my mental health in the process.
Image by methodshop from Pixabay