I'm sitting here at 7ish in the morning, counting my blessings, and one blessing that is making me want to write this post is you guys (well, most of you anyway LOL). I want to thank all you Fish-heads out there who write great posts, incite really good conversations, pray for others in response to prayer requests in the Oratory, put up interesting polls, share funny videos and make us laugh, keep your cool and remember charity above all while hanging out here -- even when someone disagrees with you, go to the tons of trouble involved in hosting contests and starting games, visit the site's sponsors, buy stuff through FE's affiliates like Amazon or Mystic Monk Coffee, advertise here, donate once in a while, or subscribe. Really, most of you are just good people, and I'm glad you're here making FishEaters a better place.
I was trying to figure out how long FE's been on the internet, and the first time I can find it mentioned in the "Way Back Machine" is February 1, 2002, the Feast of St. Brigid -- a date that will henceforth be considered FishEaters's "birthday." I started the site because I was doing chat room apologetics using the software PalTalk to teach people about Catholicism, answer Protestants' questions, etc. I found the experience so frustrating, with the same questions being asked over and over or, more commonly, hearing the same accusatory misconceptions about Catholicism thrown at me, almost always in a haughty, angry tone. I became so frustrated and just annoyed
that I decided to write up all the answers to the "same ole, same ole" and have them laid out in one place so I could just post a URL and be done with it. My belief was that people who truly wanted the answers would have a way to find them if I were to do that -- and those who just wanted to yammer and beat up on Catholics wouldn't have me
to pick on anymore. I learned pretty quickly that I'm not built for verbal proselytizing. Not that I'm not good at it (I actually think I am -- as long as I have my notes
LOL); I just loathe fighting. I really do. I don't even like informal debate anymore, especially since most people go into that sort of thing without having Truth as the goal, preferring to "win" and score points, no matter how many fallacies or how much out-and-out rudeness they think it takes to "score."
Hence, FE was born ten years ago. A lot's happened in my life during those ten years (et hunc!). My Mom -- to whom I was very, very
close -- died in 2003. My Dad's suffered a series of strokes that has ravaged his mind, makes him unable to walk or use his left arm, causes him to be barely able to speak and unable to control his bowels, and leaves him completely
dependent on 24/7 nursing (which my little brother mostly provides, God bless him!), Other family members have gone on to their reward. There was a marriage followed by agonizing heartbreak, a move across the country and back again, and now finding myself, at age 50 next January, impoverished by American standards, without Social Security credits built up, and unsure as to how to go about supporting myself. There's menopause (sorry if that's TMI, but -- whoah! is that something that impacts one's life a lot!). I've lost a number of pets along the way. And there's been all kinds of beautiful things -- joys and blessings and plain old fun involving my family and my friends, coming to "own" my beloved Marta, slowly fixing up my house so it's a home, great books I've gotten to read, and graces beyond measure! My big brother, a doctor, has left for a medical mission in Honduras, with the goal of saving lives and teaching people about Jesus. I became the official "Sweetheart of the 43rd Bomb Group" (my Dad's 5th AAF bomb group in WWII), an honor that touches me so very, very deeply that I don't have the words to describe it. I've learned I'm about to become a grandmother (breaking news! I'm so excited I can't stand it!
LOL). So many things... What a decade it's been! And through it all, all the good and bad, there's been this site and you folks
It seems that, for whatever reason, FishEaters has become a sort of "second home" to a lot of you. It's that for me, too, even though I don't post nearly as much as I used to in the beginning. And when I was thinking about it all, about the website and its surprising relative success given what it is, the kind of site it is and the limited resources available to me to do what I can with it, I just felt compelled to say thank you. Thanks for being here, thanks for being cool and interesting, thanks for supporting the site, thanks to the few of you who advertise with me, thanks for providing "the stuff" that makes FE that "second home" for so many. I appreciate you
and I just want you to know it. God bless all y'all