Saturday, January 11, 2020

A Return to Blogging as it Used to Be?

A couple of things happened this week that caused me to thinking about returning to blogging the way it used to be.  Let me tell you about them.

First of all, I had the most amazing three hours over lunch on Wednesday with my friend, Cindy Bodie.  She and I started blogging together back in the day. You'll remember.  In 2005, I helped create her blog and we read each other -- and several other's faithfully.  People like Sheri and Kari and many others who have since disappeared from the blogosphere but can be found on Facebook.

You see, this was blogging before blogging was cool -- before it had awesome graphics and before Word Press became THE way to blog.  It was before people used blogging as a way to get people to read their writing so that they would think "Oh, I hope they write a book" and then when they write a book people buy it.  There are a zillion articles now on how to set up a blog schedule.... Pinterest is full of ideas.  Blogging has become an industry.

But ask Kari .... or ask Cindy.   Blogging back in the day was barf on a page.  We didn't write it for other people when we started.  We wrote it because it was survival.  It was our way of making meaning from things that had no meaning.  It was a safe place (which is odd, because the online world feels anything but safe now).  Blogging was for me.  It evolved into a community, but when I started blogging was for me.

Fast forward to 2012 when I got a job working for a huge, fairly famous adoption agency.  My name became associated with them and I got more careful.  A lot more careful.  Also at this point, my children were starting to resent my being so open about them.   They were not interested in my feelings about them being shared online much.  And they certainly didn't want their details out there for all kinds of people to see.  In fact, it wasn't just about my kids any more because now there were baby mamas and baby daddy's and their families and ex boyfriends and girlfriends and a whole lot of relationships that kept getting more and more complex.   When I moved to Virginia I started posting devotionals which hardly ever get read any more.   So what's the point of blogging now?  I miss the old days, but can I really recreate them?

In visiting with Cindy, I realized that my blogging evolved about a decade ago from a way for me personally to figure out my inner chaos to something I wanted people to read.   Back in the day I would have 400-500 readers a day and the more views I had the more impressed I was with myself.   Now it's a good thing that this does not define me because I seldom hit 100.

Today I read the book "Invited" by Leslie Verner.  So much of what she said resonate with me and the person I remember being back in the day.... back when adopting and being a foster parent was a dream.  Back when I thought I may have been called to be a missionary.   Back to when life looked like a wide world full of possibility and I just needed to figure out where I fit.  And much like her journey, mine has led me to a place where life looks a lot different and I am asking myself, as I did did a couple weeks ago, Is this Enough?

When I finished the book I headed over to her blog which is called Scraping Raisins.   She is just a little younger than I was when I started blogging in 2005.   Her blog is polished.  Her blog is accompanied by Facebook and Twitter and Instagram.  Her blog looks really nice.  Even though she is sharing her inner thoughts as I did, they are very well written and nothing like my blog which Kari once reported was "like a car accident .... you don't want to look at it, but you can't help yourself."

As I looked at her writing I remembered that feeling when I wrote my blog for me.  I remember the way that it connected me with other people who were in my same situation.  I remember the way it all was before I wrote my books that now nobody buys... when blogging had no purpose other than to get it all out.

Maybe there is another audience now.  Maybe there are women my age who are not feeling polished or professional.  Maybe there are burned out old adoptive parents who jumped into this space with hearts full of love and a desire to change the world but have arrived at a place where their world has changed instead.   For better or for worse.  Maybe there are people out there who are, like me, tired, spent and wondering "Is this Enough?"

Maybe me sharing some of those thoughts with the world on this blog might be helpful to some of them.... but what if it simply is enough for it to be helpful for me?

Maybe I'll post some pictures, maybe I won't.  I have decided that I will rarely tell Facebook that I am writing so that people come here themselves and I don't have to feel the rejection of knowing that over 2000 Facebook friends have seen my post but don't care enough about me or what I have to say to click once.

So if you've been here all along, thank you.  If you've come because of an old Facebook link to this page, bookmark me because I'm not going to draw attention to the blog publicly as to not have my children, coworkers, or others upset.

This will be me.... unleashed ... like I was 15 years ago.   Let's see how it goes.

You'll have to comment here because this isn't linked to Facebook.  I know.  Weird.  Archaic even.


Lee said...

I'm glad you are going to be blogging "old school" again!

Cindy said...

After we parted I thought of hundreds more things I hadn’t told you or that we hadn’t discussed. Blog on girlfriend, I remembered where your blog was - well I googled it, but I remembered the name of it.

QueenB said...

I miss all the "old school" blogs....yours, Karis, Cindy's, so many others. I know life moved on and away, but I always wonder what happened next. Glad to read your musings again.

Anonymous said...

I'm really looking forward to whatever you decide to share. I feel like reading the older style blogs made me a more compassionate person. Thanks for that! And thanks to Cindy, and Kari, and so many others.

Paula said...

I still follow and as a adoptive have gleaned much from you.

Annehueser said...

I will happily read your blog, whatever you write. I am one of the readers of your devotional writings but I also like your other writing.

Marci said...

Claudia, believe it or not, several months ago I started reading the early years of your blog again. We have been going through some really difficult months with a couple of our adopted adult children who are still making very bad decisions and I needed to remind myself again that we will get through this. (That darn Cindy closed her blog down or I would have started reading her early years of blogging too :)) Anyway, there are those of us who really loved your blog and still need to hear your wise words. Some of us are battle-worn after raising a boatload of traumatized kids and we still need support in our old age. I'm thrilled you're considering blogging again!

Claudia said...

Thanks everyone for affirming my decision and for your patience as I am not as consistent as I wish. And Marci, I read those early years sometimes myself. I need the encouragement too -- and the reminder that we've been through way worse!