Mightier than the Sword


It’s been a while. I know that. I’ve wanted to write. I’ve even tried to, but something is holding me back. And the longer I leave it the harder it gets.

I don’t know. It’s not like there hasn’t been stuff going on I could have written about. There’s been all sorts. It just doesn’t seem interesting enough. I don’t know, I think I’m experiencing something of a burnout. Creatively, emotionally, everythingly. I get through the day. I celebrate what I can about Oscar’s achievements, if we’re all still alive at the end of the day I class that as a success. Everything else just seems to fade into the background.

And then it gets that there’s so much I could write about, that I don’t know where to start. Like for example four days ago was my four year blogging anniversary. FOUR YEARS! I’ve celebrated every other ‘year’ milestone, but this year came and went without me really noticing. I should have at least acknowledged it. But as I hadn’t written for two months, I didn’t feel I had the right. I mean what’s that all about? I take a two month hiatus and all of a sudden my four years worth of back catalogue (that’s 352 posts if you’re interested), no longer means anything? Really?

I used to be so proud of my work, and in some respects I still am. It just doesn’t feel enough anymore. Good enough, solid enough, worthy enough. 80,000 views in four years really isn’t that much. I see new bloggers getting that in their first year, shit in their first six months if they’re savvy. What is it they say; comparison is the thief of joy? Hmmm.

So, if you wondered where I was, there you go. I was here, just having some sort of creative crisis. Putting so much pressure of myself to write brilliant posts that I write nothing at all. So do I give it up? And if I do, what’s left for just me? But if I keep going, I think I need to redefine my relationship with my blog. I never set out to be a blogger and I think that might be my problem. I care more about how things scan, and how interesting the words I write are, than how many people they’ll reach or their SEO value. because you see I think I’ve figured┬ásomething out.

I’m not a blogger, I’m a writer.

And if I just start writing again, perhaps I’ll find my new place, my new creative identity. I just need to pick up that pen….





Am I boring you?

I don’t know if any of you guessed this, but I very rarely plan my posts. I sit down on a Monday (or whenever I’m able at the moment) and wait to be inspired. I may process a few things in my head the night before and occasionally, when I’ve unexpectedly found myself with a few quiet minutes I might jot some lines down by hand, but I honest to goodness never write like we were taught at school – rough draft, revise, revise again, final draft, check, hand in. But then I never wrote anything like that at school either. Just ask my English teachers!

Its not always easy to know what to write about. I can have a list of things I think might make good posts in my head, or scribbled in my notebook, but sometimes when I sit down to write, none of them feels right. I originally wanted to use this as a space to discover more about me as a parent by reflecting on things I’ve learnt as I’ve gone along. And I really love writing my parenting posts. I’ve had so much positive feedback about them. But some weeks, I just don’t feel I’ve learnt anything “new” or different enough to write about. Some weeks life just confirms what I already thought. Or a subject that I’ve dealt with before comes up again. And I think that’s always going to be the case. Some weeks I’ll learn massive life lessons, other weeks we’ll bimble along, just doing what we do.

This week has been one of those weeks. We went back to our Toddler Groups. My main buggy went mouldy so I got a new one. We played with playdoh and cars and books. Friends came to visit. He was snotty. Then he was sick for a day. It was just a fairly average week. Nothing to get too excited about. I remember having weeks like that at work. Not boring as such – just normal.

So for those who think those who parent in place of paid work have so much more fun – yeah sometimes you’re right! But then sometimes you’re wrong. Sure I get to watch Despicable Me with lunch. But I get to watch it every day. Yes I get to go to the park and the leisure centre with him. But I get to stand around in the cold, pushing the swings for hours or wiping snot and dirt off him and me. Our lives can be just as mundane as they can be exciting.

But then I think this is OK. Its OK to be a bit boring as long as you’re happy and I know I am much happier than I was a year ago. I don’t feel like I’m missing out so much if I’m not doing something. A couple of weeks ago various things conspired to keep us at home for four days in a row. And it was fine. I wasn’t climbing the walls and shouting for help through the letterbox at passersby like I would have been a year ago. I was glad to go out when I did, but until then, it was all good.

The other day a friend asked me how I dealt with the particularly stressful (for us) transition from weaning to feeding. I told her, but said (without thinking) that I was a very different person then. I had to mentally stop and check myself. Was I? Am I so different? And I think I am. And I think that’s to do with contentment. I spent the first year of Oscar life thinking everything should be all singing all dancing and getting disappointed when it wasn’t. I’m much happier with the ordinary, the everyday than I can ever remember being in my life.

So yeah, sometimes I might struggle to know what to write and it wont just come to me every week. That’s OK. It might mean nothing exciting or truly life changing has happened recently. But it also means nothing awful has happened this week either. And for that I’m grateful.

Me & him. Every day.

Me & him. Every day.