I have tried to swing the pendulum into different genres when I write. I have tried to step back from talking about motherhood. Over the years I have experienced online bullying, and scary real life bullying. I have also experienced deep, authentic heart connection with friends and readers as a direct result of my words. I have tried to change my tone to become a more polished writer. To write more about food, fitness, diet, exercise, health, generalities. To turn my motherhood musings down a bit. I created a fitness Instagram two years ago, that I love putting my thoughts out into, but up until recently, it has left out huge pieces of me. I wish I was more capable of doing that, but I’m not. Not at all.
I look at “successful blogs” and I see that they all have a removed tone, and, likely, a firm boundary on sharing too much of themselves. And I know why. I know the dangers your heart and brain take on when you reveal your self too much. My heart bruises like a peach, and it’s a big risk.
I’ve found firmer boundaries surrounding my children, what I’ll share, and what I want them to be reading about themselves in a few year’s time. That has been easy and important. But in drawing my own boundaries, it’s muddy. And I swung too far away from my heart.
I value authentic, heart-voice words, and when I don’t write them, I wither. That sounds dramatic, but I am nothing if not dramatic.
This past couple of weeks I’ve been working hard on the back end. The monetization and business pieces of blogging (I would love to help contribute to my family with an income, and to make some goals and extra curricular activities for my kiddos possible, down the line). But whenever I finished the class/challenge/goals, my fingers find their way back to the keyboard.
It’s as though once I started typing, my heart couldn’t stop. Instead of sticking to my thought out list of topics I’ve brainstormed, here I am.
I looked for the right way to write. The right words to write. The right genre to grow into. But my North Start is ever bright, and I’m back again. Motherhood. Womanhood. Late at night, from my heart, crafting posts about home school and guilt, motherhood and joy, self care and its multitudes of meanings, my how-to’s ranging from meditation and recipes, to knowing your heart and holding it gently. The weight of being a woman today. The immense work and weight of trying to raise strong and self-assured girls.
Women are my passion. Writing to women. Knowing how immense our hearts are as we hold tight to a million things and a few burst out the top and fall. We’re holding it all together. Trying to determine my “brand” … impossible. Too vast. I can’t stick to it. I am a mother, a wife, a woman, I hold it all.
I feel collectively like mothers, and women, we’re standing in the wind. Brilliant and beautiful, trying to be firm and strong, a lighthouse for our children that we send out into the storm. There are days that the how-to’s of recipes and fitness are important, and I lean into those days as easier ones. But there are days when the deep ache of being so responsible and so needed is heavier than any weight I lift, more important than any food that crosses my lips, and the needs of that day trumps any light hearted read. Those days are my song.
The only way through those feelings is out through my fingertips. I try to resist it. I want to have an easier way to cope, I want to have a less vulnerable way to process. I want to feel done processing after yoga, a run, or some alone time (all those help, but only a bit). But the truth is that connection is what pulls me through the crushing days.
I connect with a page, I connect with personal messages and emails. I connect on Facebook. I connect on IG. I connected, maybe embarrassingly?, on Snapchat and IGstory. I connect in ways that are scoffed at and disregarded. But I connect by reading other women’s’ broken writing.
So, try as I might, I’ll never venture too far into writing that doesn’t fall into fragments, lyrical, and conversational. I am not a polished writer. I am not able to follow my plans to a T. I am flawed, and overrun with words. Not always the best ones. I was telling Charlie last night, it feels like every day I just fall on the words “have grace. Just have grace. And it’s a cop out, it’s too much. I’m falling on grace too often.”
But I was wrong. There is no ‘too much grace’, there is only unending pools of grace, words, to bathe in, to heal in. There is only unending grace in whatever way you need. There is grace in your child’s forgiveness, there is grace in your partner’s arms after a heartbreaking day. There is grace in your journal. There is grace in your run. There is grace in your bath. There is grace in getting stuff done on the to-do list. There is grace in whatever way and form you need to process and love yourself.
Thank you, for being here and listening. As I bleed my own need for grace all over the page. Unable to stick to one ‘brand’ or theme. I will always, no matter how hard I try not to, break all the rules in blogging. I will still shoot for my enormous goals, but I won’t try to change my voice or how tender and vulnerable my heart is.
I am wanting to make a space where it’s as helpful and needed to read about how to make an easy dinner for your family as it is to nod your head as your heart is broken in two about your children growing up too fast. I want a place where I can write about my feelings on switching up your workout routine, and in the next breath (or post) write about the incredible amount of thought it takes to deeply know another person and be married to them.
Learning about blogging comes down to “what is your brand” again and again. What do you want to give your readers. Why are you doing it? Everyone else seems to have this pegged in one theme. A few short words. An easy Pintrest search. I don’t. It comes down to words, that fill all 30 of my years, and spill over the edges of my ability to contain them; To Help Women Embrace and Love their Whole Self.
I guess this is my revelation. I’ll have it ten more times. I’ve had it before. Motherhood will always be the backdrop to my conversation. Loving women will always be the song playing in the background, or being belted out at top volume, in my writing. My brand, my posts, will always run the gamut. Because women run the gamut.