Today I had the opportunity to answer the question why I blog. It was fun to look back at those first early posts. I started a blog because we were expecting our first child and it seemed like a great way to keep our family up-to-date. Over the years I began to write less about my family and what we were doing and more about the things that stirred my soul. The words would reverberate inside of me and I couldn’t not put them down. It continued to grow and evolve and the why behind blogging for me is this: When the dirty dishes and the laundry and the schedule and the kids emoting all over me becomes too much I reach for a book. It started when I was a kid, and I think protected me–I didn’t realize how bad things were because I spent half my time in another world and only popped my head out when things seemed safe. Writing (and blogging) becomes a way for me to engage the present reality of my life. It’s when I stop and examine the pieces, when I look for the beauty and the adventure hidden in my own backyard. It helps me process things that happened, to see the glimmers of joy and truth, and it allows me to get in touch with my inner-self who is often forgotten in the everyday crazy.
Like any well-functioning adult I have systems in place to help keep the escapism at bay. I work out regularly around other people so there’s accountability. I am seeing a therapist–so my past doesn’t overwhelm my present–and a nutritionist–so that food doesn’t contribute to any imbalance. I printed out a summer schedule complete with chore chart so the kids aren’t bouncing off the walls by the end of the day. All these things have contributed to relative stability with my emotions and general well-being.
But when I’m not writing, I’m not functioning at my best. I write because I need too. I write because it’s the only way I see the adventures that are waiting for me. Doug and I are planning our ten year wedding anniversary extravaganza and the man has offered me the world. Literally. Anywhere I want to go, he wants to take me there. But I haven’t written the past month. And so all I can see is the couch and a stack of books calling my name.
I write for clarity. I write to see.
And I write because I know I’m not the only stretched thin by the demands and pressures of life. That there are many of us who have to fight to see the beauty in our lives. And we need each other to make sure we’re fighting for the best things. You may have systems in place to help with the day to day. What are they? If not, what would help you put them in place? And what are the things that feed your soul that the other systems support? But this one thing is when you thrive? What things whisper promises of fulfillment but then leave you empty when you’re done? How do you fight for adventure and joy in the every day? Tell me–I want to know.