I’m in a sort of writing limbo these days. I feel this urge to write all the time, every day, like a craving for chocolate. The difference is that writing requires too much effort on my part, whereas eating chocolate is just easy and divine.
I’m not sure why this has become such a struggle for me. I blame it partly on the fact that the magazine I usually try to submit devotions to every couple of months still has not released their theme questions, which makes it really hard to write pointedly about any of their scheduled topics. Every time I check their website, I hope those questions will be there to spark some inspiration. But alas, only the theme titles are given, which are sometimes rather vague. And so, when I have these good intentions of starting a draft, I let myself go back to Facebook and recipe browsing and don’t get any writing done at all.
Then there’s the obvious problem: time. As a mom of a toddler, I don’t have an abundance of free time like I used to. I can’t binge-watch Gilmore Girls for six hours anymore. I can’t lounge in a recliner reading chick lit for long. I can’t spend half the day shopping for nothing in particular. The days I’m not working are dictated mainly by my son’s schedule and needs. Yes, my husband is there too, but even with the two of us, there’s still no shortage of things to be done at any given moment. The two hours or so when he naps each afternoon are a godsend, but they fly by too quickly. Do I spend that time working out? Do I make some healthy freezer meals ahead of time (something on my mind with a new baby on the way in just a few weeks)? Do I take a nap? Do I run errands, clean house, do laundry, call my mom?
All of these are valid reasons not to do something, but not really excuses. Yes, I am pretty busy every day, but there is still time left over when I could be writing. Even twenty minutes a day would be beneficial, and I would feel like I’m getting somewhere. I tend to choose exercise, or cooking, or reading, or just watching zombie movies and Doctor Who with the hubs, rather than writing.
The other major reason for my laziness is that I can’t seem to narrow down what I want to write about. My blog isn’t for income, it doesn’t have to follow any set format or quotas, it’s just for me. Yet, I always wonder what would grab the most interest for readers. Even though I only have a handful of followers, and a few Facebook friends who sometimes read what I share, I definitely care what they think. I care what you think, if you’re kind enough to be reading this right now.
I want to write something that matters. Maybe not to a lot of people. I’m okay with that. I’m okay with reaching a small audience, but I still want my words to matter to people in it. I want to take the time necessary to home the right words for what I try to convey.
The thing that paralyzes me the most is this insecurity about what I have to say. Daily, thoughts flit through my head, ideas for new blog posts, but then I second-guess myself. Who really needs another article about gaining patience with toddlers? Or another complaint about the state of public education today? Or another commentary on the weather, or another devotion on perseverance through trials, or another recipe for zucchini-carrot-flaxseed muffins? Who cares about my memories of my two brothers as we grew up? Who needs to read about my son’s milestones, or how nervous I am getting about baby #2’s impending arrival?
Yep, I don’t quite have a handle on where I want to fit in the blogging world. It shouldn’t matter to me this much; I should stick to writing what I know and if I feel led to share it, to do so. But the little voice in my head keeps holding me back.
Who knows? Perhaps I will get up the nerve to publish this piece, despite its rambling nature. I think I’m not alone in this struggle. Regardless of how insignificant our work as creative people may be, we still yearn for meaning and purpose in what we create.
Wishing each of you a safe space in which to express whatever your creative little hearts desire…