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Over the past
several months, I’ve discovered a whole world, a subculture if you will, of
online bloggers. It’s a community
that is huge and, at the same time, incredibly tight-knit and connected. As I’ve been reading, I’ve continually
linked to one blog and another, perusing recipes, artwork, photos and essays,
and I’ve been amazed.
First, the whole
idea that there is an entire network of other like-minded moms, writers,
runners and artists just astounds me.
Maybe I’m just old-school, and for the rest of you this is old news, but
I’ve been blown away by the number of women who are writing about many of the
same things that are so important to me.
support among these writers is extremely uplifting. As a beginning blogger, I have been somewhat intimidated by
the vastness of the Internet and my alarming lack of technical skills; however,
I finally got up the nerve to reach out to a few of these women with questions
and requests for advice, and the warm responses surprised me. I must admit that I did not expect to
hear from many, if any at all, yet all of them responded with helpful
suggestions, free advice, honest feedback and good wishes. A few have even offered to team up for
some pretty exciting offers, interviews and collaborative projects, so I’m
really psyched about the next few months as we head into another new year.
This blog is
something I’ve really enjoyed over the years, yet I’ve let it slip from my list
of priorities several times. It’s
not that I didn’t have things to say, I just wasn’t sure where to start or if I
needed an “overall plan of action” in terms of my purpose. The idea of trying to cram it into some
sort of niche’ or structure sort of killed the creative fun, which, for me, is
a primary motivation. I also didn’t
give it enough time, and I didn’t give myself permission to take it
seriously. It seemed, like many of
my creative pursuits, a pastime or frivolous diversion that should be done only
when all my serious work, i.e. laundry and grading essays, had been
completed. It has always been
something that I get around to after everything else, all the important things,
is done. In fact, much of my
writing has been done in that way.
The sad fact is, though,– and all moms know this is true—those moments
when everything else is done rarely occur. There is always something else that needs attention. It was becoming a great source of
frustration for me.
Then, as I was
reading one of my newest favorite blogs, Hannah’s Harvest by Hannah Marcotti, I
came across these words: “The
common struggle of blogging or producing content isn’t that you don’t know what
to say, you don’t know where to start. So you avoid. There is no rhythm for you
around the practice.” Rhythm, to
me, suggests that the writing, even the frivolous blog, must be prioritized
like everything else. It is, after
all, at least as important as folded underwear, right?
So I dusted off the space heater,
called the electrician to fix the wonky electrical outlet in the Hobby House,
broke out the feather duster and vacuum, and dragged my pens and papers, laptop
and notebooks back out to a “room of my own” and sat down at the desk. Inside the house, there are piles of
laundry, tissue paper and gift bags (Harper Lee no longer has a birthday; it’s
a week long event), and the breakfast dishes are still in the sink, but out
here in my own little space, none of that bothers me, and I can work my writing
into the rhythm of my day.
Housework never goes away, but
ideas and moments of inspiration are fleeting. Play with your kids, go for a walk, exercise, bake some
homemade bread, write a blog post, dance, do the crossword, play the guitar—whatever
it is that makes you happy, that gives your life meaning and hope and joy, do
it—you don’t even have to find the time; it’s already here.