"....... for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust" Psalm 103:14

It's a blog-iversary, of sorts

Photo by Thought Catalog on Unsplash

Happy blog-i-versary to me. Well, sort of anyway. I realised recently that it's well over 12 months since I hit "publish" on my first blog post. Not my first ever, but my first for this blog nevertheless. And that particular anniversary just slid by unnoticed.

Now before you think I've been actually blogging, posting regularly for all of those months (and you just somehow missed all those awesome posts), let me say from the outset that I blogged for about the first 7 months, and then I basically retreated from the blog and went into hibernation. It probably seemed quite sudden (if you even noticed), but it wasn't really. It wasn't intentional either, it just kind of happened gradually.

I had posts scheduled, but then nothing else in the pipeline. Well, that's not entirely true. I still had over 100 posts sitting in "drafts", but many of them were just fledgling ideas that I'd jotted down without even having a title. Lots of them were posts I wrote years ago, and when I read them more recently they seemed, somehow, no longer relevant.

Doubts and questions
Once the scheduled posts dwindled down to the last few, I found myself asking (again) questions about blogging. Questions that, for a while, remained unanswered - some even now. The same kind of questions I ask myself about Facebook, when I'm remotely tempted to post anything at all. Posting in that forum happens so rarely these days, because I'm always asking myself "Why?"

"Why would I post that?"

"Why would I share that publicly?"

My initial time of regular blogging was interesting for the questions it raised, if nothing else. I had more than a few times of doubting myself and my purpose, questioning the goal of my blog, and wondering who my target audience might actually turn out to be, or if I even want a particular audience.

Not only that, but I've asked questions like "Do I have too many blogging hats - midlife blogger, Christian blogger, stepmum blogger, divorced blogger, remarried blogger, wellness blogger - to really find a niche?" and, more pathetically, "If I don't get any comments, is it because you don't like me?"

And so I stopped blogging. Completely. And my blogging hiatus became 6, then 7, then almost 8 months.

Then good discoveries
I barely touched the blog, and actually, it was lovely. Any pressure I may have been feeling to get something written because Monday was looming - or Friday - just dissipated completely. And for quite a while I wasn't really missing writing. Much.

Thankfully I also discovered a few things while I paused the blog.

1. Blogging takes time (no kidding), and sometimes I'm simply too busy to give it the time it deserves. Too busy to write. Too busy to read. Too busy to comment. Too busy to reply to comments.

2. Blogging takes commitment. If I want to post regularly, I need to commit the time and effort to writing.

3. Blogging takes effort I sometimes don't have (or want) to give.

4. Blogging takes inspiration. I don't want to be recycling the same ideas over and over. I don't think readers are that easily fooled. Sometimes I come up empty, and that needs to be okay.

5. If I do want others to read my blog, I need to put it out there. Join a "blogging party" or share my posts on others' blogs. BUT (and this is a big one for me) I'm not willing to share or comment on blogs that post content with which I disagree, so I need to be discerning about the blogs I read, share, join, or follow.

But what can I say, I do just love writing!
I recently came to the end of a period of "long service leave" (something, I discovered, that seems to be unique to Australia). I wasn't at work for over 7 whole weeks, and it was just wonderful. Not least because we travelled, and I blogged THE WHOLE TIME. Every day. Over here. Feel free to have a read.

But once we got back, and the purpose of my holiday blog was done, I found myself missing the writing. There's no denying it, I simply love to write. It helps to get my thoughts down and out of my head, and I do really, really enjoy the creative process that goes into preparing a post for publishing - the editing, the tweaking and refining. I shouldn't be surprised. I used to love doing "projects" at school, as much (if not more) for the "prettying up" of the finished product as for the learning that may (or may not) have been involved.

I've concluded that blogging fits the bill for me right now as a great vehicle from which to do all those things I enjoy.

Picking up again
So I’m going to gently explore writing again on this blog over the next little while. What I mean by that is I will write when I can and when I want to, and not when I feel I “should”.

No self-imposed pressure.

No self-imposed deadlines.

I'm just going to write. And as my thoughts take shape, if it becomes a blog post, then so be it. And if not, then so be it.

I've realised that I could quite happily write for a living. However, that's not likely to happen any time soon (although I DO get paid to write funding applications, and yes, I even get pleasure out of those) so I just have to take what I can get when it comes to writing.

After all of that questioning and contemplating, a long time of letting this blog lie dormant, and then re-entering the blog-o-sphere to write about our travels, I've settled again into a peaceful resolution that I write for me.

If others read, then that's a bonus.

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