Dinner is over. It’s not yet bedtime. I can’t put Kai down. It’s dark and cold (well, Florida cold) outside. Ben is teaching. I am standing up at my kitchen island, bouncing an unhappily teething baby in the ergo, while the preschooler watches an episode of Mickey in the living room, typing this post.
My free time is almost nonexistent. By the time the kids are asleep, the bottle dishes are done, the lunches and bottles are prepared for tomorrow, and the diapers are in the wash, it’s 9pm. We go to bed at 10pm, knowing at least one kid will wake us up in the small hours and that they will be up for good before it’s light out. I get that one hour of free time (and maybe an extra hour on the weekend if – big if – the boys both nap simultaneously). Sometimes I read. Mostly I watch television. But I definitely don’t blog. Nope. I cannot bring myself to use my one hour of free time to “work” on what was once my primary hobby. So I don’t. And this blog stays silent for weeks on end.
Yet I don’t give us all closure and pack up and move on from this space. While I can’t bring myself to spend my free time writing book reviews, I don’t want to give up this space that I made my own – this tiny, minuscule piece of the internet that is all mine.
When I think of officially declaring an end to this blog, I start to get nostalgic. I think about how much life has changed since I began blogging in 2007. I was a law student, with more free time than I thought I had. I read for fun and I chatted about it online. I met other readers and developed deep friendships. I began officially reviewing books at some point and I eventually made it my goal to review every book I read.
But the law student became a lawyer and then a mother and then a mother again. And slowly through all of this change, this blog became less of a hobby and more of a chore. A chore I did not want to do. I read less. I reviewed less.
So now, here I am. 32 years old. A mother. A lawyer. A wife. And yet…still a reader beneath it all. And still wanting to hold on to this little corner of the internet that I create.
So I am going to hold on. But I am not going to be a “book blogger” anymore. I promise no more official book reviews. To be honest, I have come to loathe writing book reviews. I am not clever or patient or thoughtful enough to stand out among all of the other book reviewers. I don’t think my reviews add anything meaningful to the conversation about a particular book. And I generally don’t end up having a conversation at all, but just shouting at the world my generic thoughts about a book.
When I first started “blogging,” I was on vox and I had maybe 15 readers. I posted about what I’d just read, with maybe a few sentences about how I liked it. And those 15 people replied and posted on their own vox pages. I posted about what I was going to read next. I also posted about my travels or school or dance or whatever was going on in my life, but mostly I had small conversations about books.
So I am going to go back to this. I am hoping for more of a “real time” blog again (which is why I am hitting “post” now and not “schedule”). Posting what I’ve just finished reading, what I’m about to start, what I’m listening to at the moment. I am hoping this will be less of a job to me but still allow me to keep this blog going in some form. I hope to also post about my kids and any adventures we go on.
I hope this brings back some of the joy I had in writing.
And now the baby is asleep. Mickey is over. It’s time to play pirates for 10 minutes and then go put these boys to bed. In the words of Evan’s favorite mouse, see ya real soon.
I remember those days—-it can be very frustrating trying to fit everything in while finding time for yourself. I’m glad you are going to just ‘post’ life. I don’t do book reviews–but I do like to talk books with people—and that’s mostly what I do.
Whatever works for you is exactly the right thing. You aren’t the same person you were when you started this blog, why should it be the same blog? I love the just post and don’t schedule plan. I need to learn to do that.
I think you should do whatever feels right to you, Michelle. You are juggling so many different things every single day and what little free time you have is precious, you should spend it doing something that you love. But I’m glad you are not quitting blogging and I really like your “just post about life as it happens” plan. I’m looking forward to seeing more chatty posts from you!
This was kind of what I was feeling — just post, very informal, about whatever — when I tried to restart my blog earlier this month, but it already fell away again. Maybe I’ll give it another go again.
That’s probably what will happen to me. 🙂
I remember nursing my daughter in the wee hours, while watching Roseanne on TV. And then I remember nursing her again when the same shows repeated. Talk about an all time low. I felt so lost and well, drained. Drained of creativity and energy for sure but seriously, my routine was running on auto-pilot and lasted way longer than I wanted it to. Then it got much better and now my kids are 17 and 12 but just this last week, I found myself back in the routine again. Drive to work, work work work, pick up, shuttle kid around, pick up, drive home, make lunches, make dinner, crash… only to do it again. So exhausting!!
Needless to say, I can relate but this all comes in stages and ebbs and flows which is why we all survive. Your blog will remain here no matter if you post or not. As long as you pay that domain fee every year, it will be here. Don’t worry about the rest of us. I think it’s great that you will keep this little section of your world going, no matter what its form will be in the end. It’s yours. Always will be,.