Balancing Act

I’ve noticed recently that I have quite a few more readers following my blog on a daily basis than I realized.  I mean, I’m not experiencing mutliple thousands of hits per day, but my readership has increased significantly in the last few months. 

While I’m grateful for this fact, as I’d always hoped to turn this more into a creative outlet for my writing and less of a family journal, I also feel a lot more pressure on a day to day basis because of it.  I find myself thinking of things to write and then talking myself out of it because I’m not really sure if anyone would actually want to read about said topic or it seems funny in my head, but translating it onto cyber-paper loses the effect.

Whatever the case, I do find myself thinking a lot more about my words, how I write and how much I really want to share with the world.

I enjoy writing about my kids more than anything, because…well, because they’re funny.  For example, yesterday Sloan came home and told us that the girl from iCarly is hot.  When Lee asked him what that meant he replied, “Uh, you know it means she’s, like, really awful…Really, I just like to say that she’s hot!”  

Six year olds say funny things and I love to capture those things so that someday, when he’s all grown up and we are at his rehearsal dinner the night before his wedding, I’ll be able to read some of the funny things he said and reminisce about the boy that he once was.

But there is a balance on how much I share about my kids.  I try to think clearly through how they might feel about what I wrote for the world to read when they get older.  I want them to laugh at these stories – I don’t want them to be embarrassed. 

So, sometimes, I keep things to myself.  Even if they’re funny.  There have been a couple of times when I’ve contemplated writing about a particular struggle or disciplinary issue, in the hopes of getting some insight or wisdom or understanding from other parents, but have refrained eventually because I don’t want my kids to look back and be ashamed or humiliated by my words.

This is a balancing act.

I also enjoy writing about motherhood issues because that’s where I am right now.  I’m in the thick of this thing called motherhood and it’s so nice to know that I’m not the only one who sometimes feels isolated.  Blogging has become my lifeline to a world outside the walls of my home.  There are some days when I get so discouraged as I look at the caller ID on my phone and realize no one’s called my house in two days.  But then I see that I have several comments on my blog and my spirits are lifted, because, while it’s not as personal, it’s still a connection.

Motherhood can be lonely sometimes, yes?

My conundrum with writing about all things motherhood, however, is that I often feel like I don’t have that much to say.  I don’t have any innovative child rearing tactics.  I’m thankful each evening when I tuck them in to bed that they’re all still alive!  I do aim to mother with purpose, but I don’t feel like I’m a good cheerleader on the sidelines of the motherhood game. 

I’m more like the pimple faced, uncoordinated kid who stumbles around the field and every once in awhile bounces the ball off her foot and falls into the end zone. 

What I mean is – I have a plan in my parenting, but I don’t have an excellent plan book so sharing mothering advice seems daunting to me.  I don’t have great discipline techniques or fun, crafty ideas, or cute recipes.  I don’t have great advice for getting your kids to clean up their rooms or how to make them eat broccoli without bitter weeping and gnashing of teeth. 

I can, however, write about each of these issues in such a way that we can all chuckle together at the hilarity of parenting.  For example, while I can’t give you point by point advice on how to get your child to obey you immediately, I can tell you that yesterday, when I told Landon to give me the penny that he found and was playing with, he promptly shoved it in his mouth and swallowed it.  Um – a little dangerous? Yes.  A little funny?  Uh-huh.  Because I’m now on poop patrol to make sure that the penny passes. 

I find that funny. 

Moving on…I love to blog about the fun things that happen in our lives.  Lee and I are so blessed – were blessed far beyond what I ever imagined we would be.  We are not rich…but we are not poor.  We have three healthy, beautiful, hilarious kids, a house that meets our needs, faithful and wise friends and we laugh every. single. day.  Our life is wonderful.

And so I blog about it.  I try to keep the blog light and fun, but OY! There’s pressure even in that.  I find myself sitting at the computer, staring at a blank screen, begging myself to think of something funny to say.  And sometimes I come up dry.  So somedays I’m just not going to be funny.  Somedays I don’t feel funny.  Like today.  Sorry.

There are other things I like to write about like, for example, politics.  But we all saw how that went for me the last time I did it, so I try to keep my political ramblings to a minimum because I want my blog to be a happy place.  There will be times when I share my views because, ahem, this is my blog.  But, in general, I try not to go overboard with the politics.

Blogging is great.  It’s fun, it gives me some sense that I’m pursuing my passion, I’m making a little money, I’m keeping a record of my children’s lives and I’m working out some of the kinks in my head.  But I am also balancing the act of sharing the right amount of information.  It is a delicate balance, but, so far, I think it’s going alright.

So what about you?  How do you balance the art of sharing your lives without sharing too much?

Comments

  1. Anonymous says:

    this is why I haven’t blogged- too much pressure, coming up with facebook statuses is hard enough :)

  2. Melissa Cable says:

    oh, that last anonymous thing was from me,oopsy.

  3. How much is too much? When I realized that 75% of conversations with other mommies at play groups revolved around bowel movements (consistency, frequency, color, odor, etc)I realized I had crossed so far over the line of “too much” it didn’t matter anymore! It’s tricky to know what will be embarrassing later and what to share. We use our best judgment, and, hopefully, we’ll judge it right more often than we judge it wrong. And then we ask our children to give us a portion of the grace we dole out to them daily. And if they are bitter and ashamed of their moms, well, then they have a whole new blog of their own to start :)

  4. Very true, Staci :)

  5. Hiya Kelli,

    I have been going through a similar battle in my head about my blog….but my blog entries have dried up while I have been trying to figure out what I’m going to do. So, good on you for not letting it stop you from blogging :)
    Some of my issues:
    If I just wrote whatever that was in my head, would it be interesting?
    What do I want my blog to be about? a daily chronical about my life? uplifting advice to other mothers? a moan fest? ?????
    How often do I want to blog?
    When am I going to fit in writing the blog?
    How much of my life do I want to share?
    Is my life worth writing about? I’m not doing anything overly creative, my house is disorganised, I need to manage my time more wisely, and regain a bit more balance in my life.

    Ok, dragging myself out of that stinking thinking now!

    I think in the end we must write what we feel comfortable with…what we feel driven to write, we must not try not worry too much about what others think – because we all know that we can never please everyone! But we do know how to please one person – ourselves! So what better place to start – writing in away that makes us happy! :)

    I guess we are good at overthinking things. It sounds like what you have been doing up until now has drawn in the readers, so keep doing what comes naturally to you! =)

    Thanks for the tip about writing about our kids. I haven’t really thought about that, so I will keep that in mind when I write about my kids in future. I would also like to think that if my kids ever found my blog in the future and read it, that they would be happy with what I wrote about our life together.

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