In January, 2005 I started this crazy online journal. I had never heard of a blog. I had no idea what “blogging” was supposed to look like. All I know is that I was googling a friend’s name whom I hadn’t seen for years, and their “blog” came up. I noticed in the upper right hand corner a little button that said “start your own blog”. As I clicked through the tutorial, I was thrilled to have found a way to express myself through writing which is something I have always enjoyed. I loved the idea of “publishing” without any real pressure. I could just write something, click a button, and voila – a little web page of my own. A little place to pontificate or quote my kids; a place to think through what God was showing me or had shown me in the past; a place to put pictures, recipes, or quote others….and read comments from real readers.
But my blog has always been dangerous as well. It can be an escape. There aren’t many places in real life where you can carefully construct the “you” others will see. There aren’t many places in real life where you can go to a little box of kudos and encouragement about what you wrote, shared, or made. There aren’t many places in real life where you can visit thirty friends in the course of twenty minutes. So, it is tempting to look at my real life which isn’t bloggy perfect, and want to escape into Ordinary Mother.
I have spent these last four years blogging with a constant tension as to how much is too much time to devote to writing and reading others’ blogs. It’s a good tension, and one that I have some accountability for with my husband, and soon (because I am writing more these days) with Kathy Stewart – my home girl. I am also grateful that my blog is small which lets me keep it personal. I don’t know how the uber bloggers do it – they must feel so much pressure about everything they post. I know most of my readers – hi mom – and except on the rare occasion that I get linked to from a real blogger, my numbers stay pretty low, and I that’s a good thing.
Knowing that at times I will need to back off of the blog and tend to real life, I am still so glad I blog. Last week I did something I never do, I read old blog posts. It was such a blessing to have a chronicle of what was going on in my life and in my kids’ lives. I loved being reminded of everything from my favorite pretzel candy snack, the scooter story, when we got Betsey, and funny things my kids said over the years (the older they get the less they have those one liners) to favorite Piper teachings, poetry (not great poetry, but still, my poetry), and spiritual musings. Even with its unique temptations and constant need for evaluation, I am still so grateful for this medium to publish bits of life. Are you?
I’m just curious to know how you started blogging. How do you use your blog?