Sunday, November 26, 2006

A Blogging Memo

Edited below.

Date: November 26, 2006

To: Beloved Fellow Bloggers

From: MotR

Subject: Blogging - what else?

When it comes to blogging, I feel a bit like a preggo in her third trimester (exhausted, clumsy, and in my darkest moments, just hoping it will all be over soon). And actually, this is my 9th month of blogging, which means that if blogging had a gestation period, I'd probably be about ready to give birth. But what would I be giving birth to? And was it worth the swollen ankles and sleepless nights?

I've been struggling for a while to determine how much time and energy to put into blogging. I've also been struggling with how to manage my blogging. That is, how do I carve a suitable piece out of my life for blogging so that it is meaningful but not all encompassing?

I blog because it is addictive. And it is fun. And I love it. I love to write and this is my only outlet. But I continue to question it - the intensity of it - a little bit. This isn't the first time that I have written about this. But it is the first time I am seriously going to be making some changes. Because between work and Little Guy and other stuff going on, I just have to make some changes.

You may already have noticed that I don't visit your blog as often as I have in months past and I feel guilty about that because I value the virtual friendship we have - whether I've known you since I started blogging or I'm just getting to know you. Other bloggers have written about this guilt (e.g., see here and maybe you have felt this guilt too?), and others have made the decision to scale back.

But these decisions are difficult and wrought with emotion because blogging friendships are real, and like any other friendship, they take time and nurturing. And this is what makes me saddest: that I don't have time to foster these relationships as much as I would like to, and that, some weeks or months from now, when I read a post about how two bloggers met each other in real life, I will sigh, and be just a teesy bit jealous. Because there is an opportunity cost to every decision, and I'm afraid I may lose some blogging friends over this one.

So, all this to say that I won't be in the blogosphere as much as I have been. Something's gotta give. I'll still be posting as much as I can, and I will be visiting blogs and commenting, but just not as often.

I'm sorry for all the introspection, but I just had to get this stuff off my chest because it's been gnawing at me for weeks.

And finally, to answer my own question: what have I given birth to? And has it been worth it?

Well, after 9 months, I've given birth to some wonderful blogging friendships and a collection of posts that chronicle some of the interesting and funny things that I have noticed as a first-time mother. Like motherhood, it's been tiring, but yes, it's definitely been worth it. And I would do it again if I had the chance.

Cuz you know, this is good, this blogging thing. I'm glad I started a blog. SO glad. I'm glad I met you and that we've been able to learn from each other. And hey, who knows? Maybe one day we'll even meet in real life. I think I'd like that.

Edited to add: Thanks to each of you for your comments. It's nice to know that so many of you feel the same way and that you understand. I appreciate it very much! xxoo


Blogger jen said...

Ah, sister...I can imagine it took a lot to write this post and you did it beautifully. I completely understand, and not only that, admire you for putting it out there as you did. It's amazing how much this world has come to matter, isn't it...

I am behind you 110%, and will keep checking in and not expecting a damn thing in return...:)

6:58 PM  
Blogger crazymumma said...

Nicely said. I too have been struggling with trying to achieve a balance in my life. But somehow blogging alwasy tips my apple cart. I for one will be back to read you, I will still comment, until I too slow down. And you just do what you need to do. There is a big old life outside!

7:34 PM  
Anonymous adwina - said...

As Jen said, you did it beautifully, mama :). I'm sure everyone has priorities in her life. So, you really shouldn't feel sorry about this thing, dear.

I'm happy to get to know you these past months. You've been my entertainer. Well, you and hubby actually ;). You've been putting sweet and funny things in your blog. I don't want to miss them. Just keep writing, Cristina... Please... :D *begging*

By the way, thanks so much for your compliment on this. I'm happy to share it with you all :)

Hope you had a wonderful weekend!


8:13 PM  
Blogger lildb said...

Oh, sweetest of Cristinas. I can't tell you how glad I am that you've been present. and how much your friendship means to me.

And you know I get it, the weight of the feelings tied up in this thing we all do.

love you. D

9:43 PM  
Blogger Lotta said...

I understand. Do what you gotta do. But I'm hoping you don't fade away completely!

And you so nailed the blogging friendship. I mean these are the people we tell our innermost thoughts too. How do you give that up?

10:33 PM  
Anonymous chelle said...

hehe you are so cute! It is hard to strike a balance. I find weekends are the best time catch up because bloggers do not blog on weekends.

I think these friendships that we are developing are ones that will last as long as we need them too.

11:22 PM  
Blogger Catch said...

Just blog when you can have a little one to take care of, I can imagine how busy you get. You just do what you have to do....we are behind you!

12:01 AM  
Blogger carrie said...

Oh, but look what you've done in 9 months - you've cultivated your blog into a witty, intelligent, engaging and hilariously well-written expression of you, and I thank you for it!!!!

I am finding that it is hard to keep up with the writing when life becomes busier (especially now that the holidays are in full swing) but if I'm too busy, it is just one of those things that has to give.

Your readers will be here for you though, and that says a lot about the friendships you've gained in this setting. Keep your chin up, but remember to breathe too! :)


12:03 AM  
Blogger Mega Mom said...

Good for you, I felt very similar when I gave it up. It is nice to realize that people understand and still visit and think of you.

BTW missy....I'm giving birth TODAY and I still don't feel...what did you say? Clumsy, fat, something like that!

3:12 AM  
Blogger Mamacita Tina said...

Yup, blogging is goooood. And you want to keep it fun and as stress free as possible. Good luck finding a balance, remember: no guilt!

4:33 AM  
Blogger jo(e) said...

Most bloggers need to take a break now and then. The best part is that other bloggers understand -- because most of them struggle with this same kind of thing.

5:23 AM  
Anonymous Colleen said...

It's good to find that balance and you shouldn't have to apologize for it. I'll keep coming by to see what's new with you when I can and maybe we'll run into each other again from time to time. I enjoy your blog!

7:10 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Chicky said...

You don't owe any explanations. Blog when you can, comment when you can. Real life comes first, your virtual life will always be around.

7:21 AM  
Blogger Jenn said...

I hear ya! I've been the same way, only I wasn't nice enough to write a post to apologize for it! SEE how much nicer you are than me! LOL

p.s. that last picture of the little one is adorable!

Oh and if your every near NJ, let me know...I'd love to do lunch with you MoTR!

9:01 AM  
Blogger Nancy said...

I hear your struggle, but what I think is so great about blogging is that you can do it as often as you like - whatever fits into your lifestyle. The readers, and friends, who enjoy your humor and your wonderful writing style and your personal, unique viewpoint of the world will continue to read and support you no matter how (in)frequently you post.

So no need for apologies. I think all of us, mothers in particular, understand that we are all doing what we can to get by, to raise healthy happy children, to keep up with work demands, relationship demands, etc. Just promise us that you're not closing down shop and your audience will always be here.

And as far as commenting goes ... Infrequent, but valued, comments are like presents - they surprise you from time to time and put a smile on your face when you least expected it :)

10:10 AM  
Blogger Mary-LUE said...

What everyone else said! Do what you have to and we'll be thrilled to see when it works and thinking about you when it doesn't.

10:14 AM  
Blogger PunditMom said...

MOTR, All questions I have been wondering about, as well. It IS addictive, but it's a great writing outlet, as well. But, it takes time awat from R., the house, paying writing work and the energy I should be using to work on a bigger project.

I will miss reading you as often, but hope to see your writing elsewhere.

10:29 AM  
Blogger dcrmom said...

I hope you can find a way to slow down but not leave completely! I definitely understand. There are weeks when I have no interest in blogging and then others when I just can't stay away. We all feel your pain! Give Little Guy a big hug!!

11:25 AM  
Blogger Oh, The Joys said...

This makes so much sense. You and your family have to come first.

12:31 PM  
Anonymous Nancy said...

I hear you completely, although I could not have said it as articulately as you did. I've sort of backed off from visiting and commenting on other sites recently, not because I don't love all my blog friends but because life's gotten too crazy.

And I'm with Jen -- I'm behind you completely, and will visit and comment when I can, and you do the same. But we'll be friends either way.

12:56 PM  
Blogger jennster said...

gf- i met you. i liked you. with or without this blog, i consider us friends. and not the type that HAVE TO TALK TO EACHOTHER EVERY SECOND OF EVERYDAY. you know? but i also know that if i NEEDED you, i could call you. or email you. or show up on your doorstep crying. know what i mean?
we all have to do what is mentally healthiest for us- because no one else will make that decision for us. we'll be here- and i'll still blog and still think you love me, even if you aren't reading daily.

1:22 PM  
Anonymous wordgirl said...

I'll still come around to visit.

1:46 PM  
Anonymous Jenn said...

I'll miss you, but you are always welcome at my place. Visit when you can, and please keep us updated occasionally.

2:09 PM  
Blogger kfk said...

I have to admit, it has been nice this past week to step away and stay away from the blog. I have been reconsidering it all just as you have done. It is a lot to manage.

2:33 PM  
Anonymous Andrea said...

Seems your emotions are mirrors to mine at times, besides how parallel our lives sometimes seem to be with all the coincidences between you and I.

I so get it. I do. I'm sort of slacking off in my own right. I just can't manage the intensity of a 50+ blogroll like I used to. So know that I, too, understand your words, their meaning, and your intent. So I'll see you around, when you're around.

3:00 PM  
Anonymous Momish said...

You are just too sweet to write such a wonderful post explaining yourself when you need not. I too have slowed down due to a new job, so I understand your dilemma, as most probably can relate. I feel the same way so many times. Do what you feel you can, even if at times that means nothing. Friends always will understand, especially blogging friends!

5:02 PM  
Blogger Crankmama said...

Everyone has said it all...

Blogging shouldnt' be another obligation

10:07 PM  
Anonymous dana said...

I feel the SAME way...but yet I can never seem to put this stuff into words. I'm struggling with words these days! How do I fix this?

10:29 PM  
Blogger Jen said...

Ive gone through the same thing and will be fine..and I'm glad to have found you in the Blog World...I enjoy reading your posts...and wll keep coming back to see what allis going on with you....

6:39 AM  
Blogger Kristin said...

I have cut wayyyy back as well... and I feel badly about it... you said it better than I ever could... especially the part about the friendships... I feel as though I am ignoring friends and that is the difficult part.

I'll still be checking in...

6:55 AM  
Blogger Slackermommy said...

I think we all feel this way. We are women, we are good at feeling guilty. We are also good at nurturing friendships and I think we all are wanting to scale back but are afraid of losing the precious friendships that we've made. Maybe we should all make a pledge to blog less, spend more time with family but still check in with each other once a week or so. At least through the holidays. We all deserve a break and should take comfort in knowing we have support and that we will all still be here for each other. Thank you for such a well written post.

7:08 AM  
Blogger Jonathon said...

I have these same feelings...

It's an incredibly difficult balance to strike.

I'm sure you're doing what's best for your family!

8:04 AM  
Blogger Damselfly said...

Wow, I have been thinking some of these same things -- and I guess my gestation time is up too because I've also been blogging for nine months! With a new baby, it's hard to keep up with the blogging, so it's something to think about: whether to blog, how much to blog, whether just to read other people's blogs, etc.

10:22 AM  
Anonymous Much More Than A Mom said...

I hear you sister. I blog way less than I used to, and feel a little guilt for my lack of commenting, but that's life. Actually, that's not life - it's life that gets in the way of blogging. I'm an RSS addict now - I can read 40 people over the course of a nap and only comment if I really feel inspired to click through or have some extra time. I'll always be here, and I'd love to meet you in real life if you ever come to western Canada. I'll buy the wine!


11:51 AM  
Blogger Gingers Mom said...

It is hard to find time to balance it all. I try to blog when I have time and something to say. SOmetimes it stresses me out knowing I haven't posted in a while. But like everything worthwhile in your life, it finds it's place.

2:45 PM  
Blogger Kristen said...

It's good to know I'm not alone!!

9:31 PM  
Blogger Jodi said...

I totally understand. I don't blog as much as I used to either. I am just tooooo busy. but it doesn't mean I don't love it and that when I find the time I don't blog. So I totally understand! Blogging keeps me sane. Well saner....:O

10:10 PM  
Blogger MommyWithAttitude said...

Yes, when life gets crazy, blog reading is always the first to go for me. I just try to catch up when I can and know that I'm missing some great stuff, but at least I'm not missing my regular life!

10:59 PM  
Anonymous Super-Mommy said...

I totally understand. I am new to the blog world, and am trying so hard to make friends, but I always feel like I am not reading enough or commenting as much as I should.

Cheers to you for writing a beautiful post!

12:44 AM  
Blogger Janet a.k.a. "Wonder Mom" said...

I hear you. You said it perfectly.

You do what you have to to make your life happy. We will always be here when you need us.

3:54 AM  
Blogger Red Rollerskate said...

Well fine, then. I am most certainly not going to visit your blog anymore.
JK. Do what you gotta do. I love you. Of course all your friends will understand!

8:05 AM  
Blogger Kyla said...

I think everyone goes through this...and the right answer is ALWAYS to do what is best for you and your long as you don't totally stop writing. *lol* Because then we'd all have this MotR shaped hole in our blogging hearts. *lol*

8:18 AM  
Blogger Lawyer Mama said...

No guilt & no explanations necessary! There's only so much time in the day.

11:20 AM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

Bravo. It's only worth doing if we love it, right?

11:57 AM  
Blogger beth said...

Oh my goodness. Had I the motivation and the eolquence this would be my post. Instead I've chosen to just sort of bail with no explanation. You said it though. I think when blogging feels like an obligation it is time to step back. Very well said, you.

12:54 PM  
Blogger beth said...

Eloquence...eloquence. See my point?

12:55 PM  
Blogger Useless Man said...

"When it comes to blogging, I feel a bit like a preggo in her third trimester... "

I swear I'm not the father!

7:12 AM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

Useless Man: I hate to say it, but I'm not sure WHO the father is in this situation. LOL.

4:04 PM  

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