Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Lost Blogging Mojo

Somehow, for no logical reason that I can arrive at, I really haven't taken to Feedly. In the times of Google Reader, I regularly checked in and stayed on top of my feed, keeping track of what my favourite bloggers had written. When it went bust, I moved my feed over to Feedly but I find that I rarely go there. And when I do, the list of unread posts looks so daunting that I either hurriedly shut the browser tab or guiltily click on 'Mark as Read'. When I do gird my loins and dive into my feed, I realise that one of the things missing is that many of my favourite bloggers either hardly write any more or have given up the ghost entirely.

For me, reading other blogs was always very closely linked with how much I ended up blogging here in my own space and it's no surprise then that the action here has not so much dwindled to a trickle as pretty much dried up at source. There was a sense of community about blogging in those good only days. There was a lot of cross-talk and commenting and connecting going on. Those comments were important to me because they reassured me that I was not just writing into a void. The friendships I formed through this blog were important to me too but it's been a while since I connected with someone new through the blog and the friends I made in the early years are now friends independent of our blog personas.

From its name to its content, this has always been essentially a mommyblog. My first few (and most challenging) years as a mother were rather lonely. I wasn't a particularly young mother but even so, it was almost three years before any of my friends went ahead and had kids. And when they did, they were dealing with infants while I had moved on to making decisions about schooling and dealing with temper tantrums. This blog was a space where I could come and share my experiences and voice my opinions about being a parent. It was a place where I found kindred spirits who offered advice and much-needed validation that I wasn't making a complete hash of this parenting gig. But I've grown up a lot since those days and am quite comfortable now in my skin as far as being a mother goes. I know I am not a perfect mother (far from it) but I also know that I am doing the best I can and in line with my beliefs about raising good human beings.

And there's the beliefs themselves. It's hard to write about my parenting approach without coming off as sanctimonious or judgmental. When I go back and re-read some of my old posts, I often end up wincing at how preachy they sound. Other than the rare ones who can rise about it, most mommyblogs either bore your pants off with the minutiae of their kids' lives or not-so-subtly eulogise their own parenting while raining on the parade of those who chose to do things differently from them.

There is also this whole privacy thing. As they grow, I feel less comfortable with talking about the kids online. I didn't think it was such a big deal before and I don't have any regrets about the stuff I have already written, but now that they are older, I definitely think twice before I put anything up, even on Facebook or Twitter. Articles like this one have definitely been food for thought and I rarely post pictures of the kids themselves on Facebook anymore, though I do still put up posts/ pictures of stuff that they have said or done.

Call these reasons or call them excuses, but they pretty much sum up why I have been AWOL from this space. But I do miss it. There is no doubt that I enjoy writing. People often suggest I write a private journal instead but social media has completely ruined that for me and I need to know that someone is reading what I am writing.

But rationales aside, the blog often calls out to me in much the way a long-forgotten but lingering item on a to-do list does. Like it needs attention or closure or something. So here I am, answering its call. Anyone still reading?