Thursday, June 20, 2013

Bettering & Blogging

I'm always looking, searching, researching ways to make it okay, to understand more, to make sense, to figure it out.  Not to sound too much like a Dr. Seuss character, but I'm always  figuring, wondering, bettering and sometimes I just do not like it, not in a box, not in a house, not with a mouse, not here or there or anywhere.  Sometimes I spend so much time searching for answers I forget to stop and look around and find out the answers were right here all along.

This week has been filled with feverish children and being somewhat stuck in our house.  So yesterday,  after a dose of ibuprofen, I took the kids for a walk.  
 We were like a group of tourists in our own town, discovering new paths, new trails, new tadpoles (which is kind of my nightmare because of my any-kind-of-frog-even-a-yet-to-be-frog phobia, but I make sacrifices for my kids all.the.time).  
Enjoying our everyday normal with new wonder and new sense of adventure.

Along our way, I literally crossed paths with a blogging super hero.  
The little girl in red in the background is one of Kelle's adorable daughters.

Not just any blogging superhero, a woman who is all about honoring the ordinary, celebrating the now, reminding us all to pay attention to the beauty around us.  Kelle Hampton from Enjoying the Small Things and the author of Bloom.  She walked up with her three beautiful kids.  

I told her I was a reader and so happy to see her.  We talked about the beauty of Michigan, having kids and wished each other well. I didn't want to be all "I'm your biggest fan" and ask for a picture, so you'll just have to take my word for it.  She was really there, this really happened.

It felt kind of amazingly appropriate that I would run into someone that inspires me and my blog.  This past week, I celebrated the two year anniversary of this blog.    

Two years ago I took a leap of faith, I jumped with my fingers crossed.  I started writing and writing and writing. 

And worried about stuff like this:

Writing this blog is like the first time I went to therapy.  

I thought, no I knew, I had so much to say.  But when I sat on the couch to spill my guts to my new therapist there was silence.  I stared at her and when she asked how I was I said "oh just fine, how are you?"

I did it because I wanted to get the words out of my head.  I did it to be creative.  I did it to practice writing and maybe try and do something else and get paid.  I did it because I was tired of saying I would do things and never quite following through (hello bungee jumping, skydiving, applying for that dream job, etc., etc.).  I was tired of giving everything away to everyone else and not doing things I longed to do.  So, I jumped and it was the beginning of Jumping With My Fingers Crossed (click here to read the first post evah).

Blogging has taught me a lot in the last two years.  It has taught me about honesty, acceptance, discipline, networking, connecting and the importance of living in the moment and remembering.

Honestly, the honesty part of blogging is super easy for me.  I've always been okay with telling people anything about my life--the good, the bad and the ugly.  Keeping it real is all I know.  The tricky part I discovered about having a blog, even a small blog, is that not everyone is okay with that, and that's okay.  I am understanding that my tweenage son doesn't want every emotion or new phase he is feeling/going through honestly portrayed on my blog and I respect that.
Lucy's sidewalk message to the world.
Having a blog has taught me to accept that there's not 80 hours in a day and I can't do EVERYTHING I want to do.  Okay, the blog hasn't taught me how to accept that, I lied (so much for the honesty), it's just pointed out that I need to learn to accept it.  There are so many things I want to write about, conferences I want to go to, ideas I want to explore, tweets I want to send, videos I want to make and there's just not enough time in the day.  But I know busyness ebbs and flows, children get older and I'm getting older too, oh wait that just turned into lyrics from Landslide.  Damn you Stevie Nicks you poet, you wrote some good stuff.
This baby won't be a baby much longer.
Consistently writing takes discipline.  I love writing every day because it gives me a sense of control and completion in a chaotic world of four crazy busy kids. 

Blogging is most definitely a creative endeavor, but it is also very much like owning your own business.  I have learned to network, promote myself, brand, market and organize my business, my blog.  I've made a billion mistakes like naming my YouTube channel Jumping With My Fingers in an attempt at branding.  Jumping With My Fingers Crossed was taken and now I'm stuck with Jumping With My Fingers.  What does that even mean?  I am learning along the way. Some things work, some things don't, but it is nice being my own boss.

Connecting with other writers/bloggers has been the biggest surprise for me.  Whether it's the super stars of blogging (ala Kelle Hampton) or small time bloggers like me, connecting, relating, reaching out has been inspiring, encouraging and just all around good.  Some of these women have become some of my closest friends.   

The biggest lesson I've learned from blogging is that remembering is a good thing.  

You have to be in the moment to really capture it.  The cute shoulder shrug, the sweet interactions between siblings, the far away have to be watching to see it.  It's not just about setting up the camera or video taping the performance or jotting down a quick recap, it's about paying attention to and loving the characters in your story.

Telling the stories of my family is a good thing.  It's our story.  It's a love story to hold in our hearts forever.  It's a story that might help other people or entertain other people or even help me earn a little extra money.

I've learned a lot in these last two years and I am going to keep on learning and figuring and bettering and all kinds of "ings."  And like a jazzy duo sang once, there ain't no stopping me now.

Like me on Facebook. Follow me on Twitter @AngelaYBloodSubscribe to my YouTube channel. And come play with me on Instagram @jumpingwithmyfingerscrossed.

Check out what I recently wrote about writing/blogging and crossing lines over at The Road To My Writer Roots.

And well, of course THE Landslide, mmm-hmmm:

1 comment:

  1. Happy blogiversary! I'm so happy that you cracked open that computer two years ago. I'm also happy that you were able to get those kids out of the house, and even met Kelle?! How random is that??