When my children were about six months old and three years old, I had one particularly bad day in which I had to change my clothes five or six times. I got pooed on, peed on, sneezed on, thrown up on, and bled on. That’s a lot of bodily fluids in one day.
This year has been kind of like that day, if you exchange physical manifestations for internal ones. My husband has been treated for cancer, and I quit a long-time job with no idea about how I would spend my time in the upcoming year. Our emotions have run the gamut from elation ( treatment’s over!, got a new job!) to gut wrenching fear and uncertainty. While I know that other years will bring other challenges, I’m not sorry to step into a new year and call 2014 done. And that’s partially because in 2015, I can blog for twelve whole months.
When I quit my job, I knew I wanted to start a blog. I wanted to write about my pause, and the new things I learned about the world during the 2014-15 school year. I didn’t know much about social media (still don’t) and I felt like this missing knowledge was a good topic for exploration. I’d write as I went, talk about what I’d learned and maybe in the process I could give someone else insight into the tapestry of the technological world from the viewpoint of a 55 year old woman. I wanted to make myself do things that stretched me as a person, I wanted to touch what makes me uncomfortable, and write about what happened when I push myself. I wanted to write about education.
And that’s pretty much what I’ve done, with a few dips into the world of poetry and fiction. In the last four months, I’ve written thirty six posts, had 995 site views and 469 visitors. Today I have 71 followers. I don’t have a clear perspective about what these numbers mean to others, or how they compare to other people who start a blog.
Here’s what I do know:
I enjoy writing this blog. It’s the highlight of my day. If I’m not writing a blog, I’m thinking about what goes in the next blog.
I haven’t run out of things to write about yet. I thought that might be a problem, but it hasn’t. People hand me things to put into my stuck bucket, or they tell me to “take a picture of that for your blog.” The whole world is my fodder.
I am amazed at all of the talented, insightful, and unique points of view I can read about by reading other people’s blogs. I knew people blogged, but I never understood the scope of this world. It’s like that time when I was six and my grandfather tried to get me to understand why there would need to be a whole factory just to make gum. Here are a few of my favorites: The Carter Library, The Immortal Jukebox, James Radcliffe, idiotprufs, and The Mashed Radish.
I never expected the whole-hearted support and kindness that I’ve received from my blog audience.
It’s the last post of 2014, and I’ll be wireless-less for the next week or so, but Ill be thinking about blog topics in the interim. Here are some topics I’m interested in:
- What do the symbols on Twitter mean? Why can’t they just write words?
- Why does my left arm pit smell worse than my right one? Could it be that my right nostril isn’t working right?
- Why do people get tattoos? Is this something I should consider at my age? What kind of tattoo would I get?
- How long have I been touching walls when I walk? What does this mean?
- I’ve never been up in the club. What do people do when they go up in the club?
- How do I set up my blog so that it’s visually interesting? How frightening will it be to take a basic photography course? Will I be in there with a bunch of six year olds?
- What is HTML, and why does RSS sound so mysterious when it means “Really Simple Syndication?”
- Who should I interview? How do I conduct a killer interview? What happens when I come back and write about it?
- How can I gently break up with Professor McMonagle, who I said I liked on Facebook, but I don’t in actuality like her enough to hear from her three times a week? When I say I like something on Facebook, does that always indicate a lifetime commitment?
I let December go by without doing a poll or posting a song of the month. I didn’t anticipate how much time the family celebrations would take and mine just ran out. I hope to get to these two goals in January.
Have a great New Year everybody! Happy Writing!