And aren’t we all a work in progress?
Today, I mean this both figuratively and literally.
When I started blogging last year, it was a journey of discovery.
It still is a journey of discovery.
A mom trying to find her place in a new found world. A world of raising teenagers. This pulling in and letting go. This heart soaring and heart breaking time. Loosening my grip on their world and discovering mine. Don’t get me wrong, they are still my world. My dream as a child was to be a mother. Raised to be prepared for Jesus’s return, I used to pray as a little girl that I was ready if he wanted to come back, but I’d really like it if he just waited until I got a chance to be a mother.
And he waited.
Some days I want to rush through these years (raising teenagers is not for the faint of heart) and some days I want to hold on and never let them go. But we all know the cycle of life and they must learn to fly. The oldest will be 17 in a few short weeks. Marching ever forward toward his total independence.
Part of my blogging journey was to see if I could discover a passion that would eventually help supplement the cost of sending three children to college. I know that I’ve shared that I’ve been married almost 18 years, but I don’t know if I’ve mentioned that there is a 16 year age gap between me and my husband. Mostly, it’s irrelevant. We’ve been in this thing together for a while and we still like each other’s company, so something must be going right! Where it becomes relevant is when we plan our future. I’ve been in the home raising our kids and running our household since the oldest was born. I will turn 40 in September. That means that he is working toward 56. I think that someday he’d like to retire. Not someday soon necessarily and maybe not ever, but it’d be nice if he had that option. I know there’s pressure to put the kids through college and save enough for retirement for you and a wife who has no employable skills. He doesn’t say that it is a lot to have on your shoulders, but I know it is.
I originally thought I’d use this blog to chronicle the journey to discovering my next career after motherhood. Most things I tried never made it onto the blog. I discovered that it’s unlikely that I’m going to upcycle thrift store furniture with beautiful chalk paint finishes (1 piece was a disaster and the other pieces sat in the garage before returning back to the thrift store). And while I make a mean smoothie and some great desserts, it’s unlikely that I’ll be a master chef (spaghetti, tacos, pizza?…these are staple meals in my home). I can probably forget about being a jewelry maker because that stuff just sat in a box.
Mostly, I didn’t talk about my trials because I’m hard on myself. I want to build something. I want my kids to realize that following your dreams is possible. I wanted it to come to me like an epiphany… a lightning bolt. But instead, discovering who I am has trickled like a slow -moving stream. I like words. I like photography. I like small businesses and businesses that give back in some way to society. I like peace. I like moments of solitude in nature to appreciate what a beautiful world that we live in.
What does all that mean? I’m not fully sure in this moment. Like I said in my very first post, this blog will evolve as I evolve. One of my first steps will be tweaking the blog layout. Which is the main point of this post. There have been parts that I have been unhappy with, but have yet to change. I am still searching for a theme that offers what I am looking for. I just wanted to let you all know in case there are any glitches during the process. I spent a lot of 2016 seeking clarity and am hoping to spend most of 2017 becoming more focused and disciplined. That means that I am hoping to create a more specific posting timeline. Details of that will be shared in a future post.
Everything I read says “have a niche for your blog”. I’ve asked my husband what he thinks my blog is about. “Everything”, he says. Great. That’s narrow. He likens it to a magazine with varied articles. Travel, tales, tidbits and more… so I guess that this is a lifestyle blog.
This is me. I am not one-dimensional.
I typically prefer to be behind the camera, but today I thought I’d share that first photo of me. If you run into me at the gym or grocery store, it’s likely this is what you might see. My hair is usually in a topknot bun thingy. I take yoga or pilates most weekday mornings which at some point involves laying on the floor and I don’t want a knot at the back of my head. I usually wear it that way for the remainder of the day. I do have on a little eyeshadow, mascara, and a neutral lipstick, but often I don’t. Sometimes I dress up, but often I don’t (I don’t need to look fancy to buy bananas or wash my dishes).
I try to be as honest about who I am on here as well as while walking around in the world.
This was my Instagram post yesterday. Since I have started to get more serious about discovering my path, this was a post asking some of my followers why they preferred the type of camera they use because I may upgrade (feel free to chime in with your preferences and why in the comments!!). I used #lifestyleblogger in the post since it was a flatlay and lifestyle is the type of blogger that I am. Do you know that I got over 70 followers from that post? That’s close to what I get in a week. Do you know what else? That photo did not get likes statistically in proportion to the number of follows. That is because I expect them to unfollow me shortly after gaining my follow (I’m crossing my fingers that they won’t).
Why am I sharing that information? Because there is a tendency for follow/unfollow patterns to instigate growth on social media. Perhaps on blogs as well. I didn’t even know there were companies out there that people pay to do this following for them or comment for them based on certain hashtags (and I am not indicating this is the process those who followed me used).
So while I hope that I will discover an endeavor that will catapult into my next career, I will choose to keep my growth organic, even if that means that it is slow growth. I want people to follow me because they are interested in who I am and what I have to share.
We are all works in progress.
I’m so thankful to all of you who have chosen to come with me on this journey. I look forward to continuing to see where this journey takes me and sharing what I learn and about who I become along the way. Like they say – “The best is yet to come!” 🙂
Let your light shine!