This blogging lark is really rather amazing. It is fun and fulfilling, scary and all consuming. It gives us an opportunity to communicate; to reach out, to seek comfort and to give support in return. It allows us to be creative and brave and honest. It gives us a voice.
As mumturnedmom turns two today, I can’t help but reflect on the past year.
At the end of my first year in blogging I talked about how much I’d learnt, how many wonderful people I’d met, and how grateful I was to have stumbled upon this amazing parent blogging world.
This is no less true now than it was then. And, as an expat blogger, it has given me so much more; support, connection, inclusion, and confidence.
I started this year with a few goals.
I won’t lie, two of these were purely pat on the back goals, but making it in to the Top 100 with Tots100 and breaking 100,000 page views, well, these were both very happy moments for me; I may have danced. Let’s face it, if we didn’t want people to read and like our writing, we wouldn’t blog. We’re putting ourselves out there and for most us, positive feedback; through rankings, readership and engagement; while not the reason we write, is one of the ways that we measure ourselves.
On a less superficial level, this year was all about writing.
I began the year with an idea, a challenge to myself to write more. To push myself and try new things. That idea was The Prompt, and on 16 January I published my first linky, with a prompt about motherhood and guilt. We are now in Week 48!
The Prompt has exceeded all my expectations. I have a wonderful group of regular linkers who brighten my Fridays every week; you know who you are! And, it is always a joy to welcome new writers. The idea of The Prompt is to focus on writing; whether it’s a few lines, a few paragraphs, an anecdote, an article, poetry, a short story or flash fiction. It has inspired some truly wonderful pieces of writing and I have been beyond thrilled to see people joining in, trying something new and getting creative. I’ve been honoured to host some bloggers first ever pieces of published flash fiction; this is more than I could have hoped for when I launched the linky.
It has also inspired me to write more; I have written articles on gun control and whether women make better parents than men. I have written poetry; Reflection, Age and Opposites Attract being a few of my favourites. And, I have written fiction, for the first time since I was at school! Books and A Letter being the ones I am most proud of.
Through The Prompt I have also come to know a wonderful group of writers and one of my favourite new linkys of the year is What I’m Writing from Maddy at Writing Bubble and Chrissie at Muddled Manuscript. Becoming part of this group has inspired me and given me the confidence to start thinking of myself as a writer and to look forward to 2015 as being the year that I start to really write; a long held, middle of the night, dream for me. (I may *cough* have joined a 100k in 100 days writing challenge… don’t tell my husband, ahem…).
As mumturnedmom turns two this is what I know: I write a blog and I love it.
Writing this blog has given me so much more than a simple record of our lives, it has preserved moments, thoughts, feelings. It has challenged me and taught me and allowed me to have a voice. It has been there on the bad days and the good. It has given me support when things were tough and encouraged me to find the positive in every day; even on the days when that has seemed impossible.
I have made friends. I have been inspired, I have laughed and cried, I have nodded my head in agreement and thought I’m so glad it’s not just me.
Blogging is hard work, it can be frustrating, there are days when you wonder if it’s all worth it. It can feel like an impossible balancing act.
But, I cannot begin to tell you how glad I am that I started this blog. I write, everyday, and that is truly wonderful.
Thank you to everyone who reads and comments, it means the world to me. This has been another amazing year, and I can’t wait to see what next year brings!