When I first started my blog, back in the dark ages of the world post-9/11 (the blog actually launched a few hours before the attack), I blogged daily. Sometimes more than once a day. Over the last several years, though, I haven’t kept up as much and I’ve considered not renewing the domain for several years. And yet, I’m still here.
Why do I keep doing that, though? Switching in and out of regularity, being consistent, then falling back into complacency? It’s because things have changed so much.
When I started blogging, blogging wasn’t a thing. It wasn’t even called blogging yet, because blog wasn’t even a term. We just called it online journaling (#oldskool) and very few people were actually doing it. It was the Woodstock era in that people were free to say what they wanted, do what they wanted, in online journals because it wasn’t a thing, because no one was googling anyone else to connect with them socially or for networking purposes. And then Heather from dooce.com was fired after writing about her bosses online and the mainstream world figured it all out. That said, those early days from 2000-2003 was the true golden age of the medium, I believe, and allowed for so much creative genius when it came to web design. Back then it was all hand-coded; most people used Greymatter or Movable Type as their content management systems, but customizing your look wasn’t initially was easy as selecting a template and hitting publish. There were two ladies in NYC – Brick and Tashia – whose blogs I loved visiting because they’d have such fun, crazy designs about every week or so.
What’s that have to do with me, though, right? I don’t know, it was just background information to tell you that it was like a new toy back then and when you get a new toy, you play with it a lot.
I was a stay-at-home mom for several years and blogging, as well as managing forums, was my outlet. I had no friends when I lived in Columbia, S.C. and I didn’t get out much, so that’s what I did: talked to friends all over the world. My husband at the time hated it. So much. He’s a social butterfly, though, and I’m the opposite.
During those early years, though, I had three kids and blogged about the minutia of day-to-day life with them. They were new and navigating life with them was new, too, so I wrote about it; I made a lot of online mommy friends going through the same stages, so it was a way for us to connect and bond. In the process of chronicling what we were up to all the time, it became our early family history, and I love that.
These days, though, blogging is different. The practice, as a whole, has evolved from journaling to either inspiring people to make over an aspect of their lives, whether it’s by painting a room in their home or hosting the most fabulous birthday party ever, or blogging as a means of marketing products. Simply put: We don’t care about the minutia anymore, unless it’s a blogger with whom we’ve spent considerable time learning tips and tricks.
When I was younger and didn’t know any better, I’d share all sorts of things here, but as I’ve grown older I’ve also become a little more private when it comes to certain areas of my life. As you mature, you learn when it’s important to keep your mouth shut (or your post in the drafts folder).
My children are also older and I suspect they wouldn’t be too happy with me chronicling their first pimples and being grounded because they signed up for social media accounts without approval and things like that. They already get mad when I talk about them on Facebook, even if it’s good, because I’m friends with some of their friends’ mothers and those mothers share everything with their children.
I don’t blog regularly because I lost my niche, or never really had one. That’s rule number one in this new game: FIND YOUR NICHE. I blog about all sorts of things, when I actually blog, and that includes my reminiscing about the days when the reason people visited blogs was to check in on the blogger, not their projects.
I have very little to offer you. I’m just a single mom struggling through raising a tribe of children, working full-time, finishing my associates degree. I don’t have time or money for house and home projects. You don’t want to ask me about hair and makeup, because I’m clueless. I don’t homeschool my children and though I drag them to church every Sunday, I don’t make them pray (it’s hard enough to get them to brush their teeth and shower; I let them choose their own relationship with Jesus). I won’t tell you about our great system of scheduling and organization, because we have neither. I just don’t blog about the popular things. #idowhatiwant
Quite frankly, it’s hard, sometimes, to think about things to write about. I write for a living, and it’s my job to have an opinion about things, but I’m tired of having opinions about things (especially when those things are things no one else cares about). At the end of the day, when I could realistically write, I’m just tired and decide, instead, to spend time with my Hulu or Netflix queue.
I am always encouraged by the comments I receive and always confused by the things that get daily hits (like mass deleting emails in GMail – that gets a lot of hits each and every day). Things have changed a lot in the 13 years since I started this blog, but the thing that remains are some of my readers and my genuine love for being open and honest.
I tried to monetize my blog a few years ago, and that income would really come in handy right now, but I just have nothing important to say on a regular basis (you could even argue that I have anything important to say at all). I don’t want to write fluff posts for readership, either, and when you find fluff here, it’s because I really wanted to write it.
So, basically, I don’t write as regularly because the point of blogging has changed, my life has changed, and my time has changed too. I’m not sure what the future holds, but don’t necessarily look for any kind of consistency. That’s just not me.