A renewed purpose to write (overcoming my struggles to write and blog)

I keep disappearing, I know. And I keep promising to be consistent.

I’ve been struggling to write and blog for exactly a year now. The ideas became harder and harder to come by. I no longer had topics I felt compelled to talk about. I’d think about the theme of my blog – motherhood, marriage and self – and feel as though I had exhausted everything that once screamed at me to come out. Did I no longer care about those issues?

I also began to question the whole exercise of blogging. For all the laundry I had shamelessly hung out over the previous year, I suddenly caught a delayed case of modesty. I thought about taking down some overly personal posts (if I could even bare to re-read some of them, that is). Some of the issues I had written about – depression, old family conflicts – were no longer really there for me, and suddenly felt like the black sheep that I wanted to deny ever existed.

And I found it very hard to be a good blog follower. Time, or the lack of it, and a job that consumes me for half a year, left me with little energy to follow fellow bloggers. We blog not simply to share our own needs but to be a part of a wider community and to respond to the needs of others. And not being a skim-through kind of reader, I feel that if you took the time to put your heart out there, then you deserve to have someone really read and understand your words. I was afraid of being selfish for blogging, if I couldn’t return the same attention to fellow bloggers. When my time became limited, I thought that if I couldn’t throw myself into blogging 100%, then I wasn’t going to do it at all.

But the idea of closing shop on Only You made me wince. Though I had neglected it over the last year, I wasn’t ready to stop writing, as shutting my blog down would in essence shut down a significant part of who I was and the larger community that I came to know.

I realized that I simply needed to look again for my focus. What is it that is now screaming to be heard?

For the past year, while I was hiding behind my blog, I was actually trying to figure out where I was going as a person. Somehow I felt gradually different, but I couldn’t put my finger on why. Then, over the last few months, things became clear. Maybe that is why the old theme had come to resonate with me less, because I have now moved on to the next stage of my life. I feel less of a need to process now, to look back on my past. Having done all of that work has brought me to where I am now: I am ready to go, ready to make concrete changes, ready to become the person I have always wanted to be. And my husband Max reminded me that having grown doesn’t mean that the past – Only You – wasn’t real or wasn’t a part of me, that I don’t need to ditch or change my blog, but just continue with Part 2. So, having this clarity now, I’ve found a renewed purpose to write, to share, and to know that I can put myself out there and engage again as I once did.

Have you ever found yourself direction-less? If so, what did you do? If you’re a writer, have you struggled with short- or long-term writer’s block?

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9 thoughts on “A renewed purpose to write (overcoming my struggles to write and blog)

  1. It’s good to hear your voice here!

    It’s interesting to see blogs grow and change, be left behind for different spaces, or just left. To me, all those old words were where I was and much like I wouldn’t give up my past (since it made me me) I cannot dismiss the words I needed to share.

    I can feel shifts in what urges me to write. And I hope this is as it should be. We grow and change and life is simply full of shifts in perspective. When we think of identity, we think of a seamless story we can tell of ourselves, but none of us such smooth stories. There are bumps and jags and subtle and dramatic changes. And, I think that is what makes us all interesting.

    Write as you feel you must, when you feel the desire. You’re words are always lovely.

    • Thanks Kate! You are such a devoted reader, and I appreciate your presence more than I can say. I agree with what you wrote. We can’t dismiss the old parts of us because we wouldn’t be here without them. Thanks for being there still!

  2. Your husband is so very right, cece. WITHOUT the past, you wouldn’t be at this point.

    All that had to be worked through for you to arrive at this point in the road.

    No way around, you can only go through it.

    That’s how we find ourselves.

    I have missed you.

    • Thank you so much for your friendship Alexandra, despite my extreme fickleness. I am looking forward to moving onward, and hopefully having more tools the next time I run into another roadblock or identity stalemate!

  3. I just discovered your blog through your comment on my blog. I struggle with these things too, and I really value being able to read your thoughts on this. thank you for the comment yesterday, and thank you for all the hard won wisdom you share as you pour your heart out, when you can, right here. big hugs to you.

    • Thank you so much for stopping by! I really appreciate that. I look forward to checking out your blog more – I’m intrigued that you are devoting a space to PPD. It is so important.

  4. I am glad to know that you’ll be back…and with a renewed sense of purpose. In response to your question, “yes.” Yes, I do often feel directionless. I do often struggle with writer’s blocks.

    But I am learning how to deal with them better. I’m learning that it’s okay to speak online and be inconsistent, to not make sense, and to write through feelings of purposelessness. These things used to be what made me afraid to write. “I don’t have anything to say!” Or “No one cares!” I would often say to myself in staring at a blank computer screen.

    Now I just write, hit publish and move on. That’s the only way I’ve found to get through my fears and those loud voices of “doubt.”

    I’m so excited to see what you have coming up on your blog!

    • Thanks so much for this, Jessica! I have *not* known how to deal with this block, and would “hide” until I found something worthy to say. I am going to try what you wrote. I’m glad that you have found a way through. Thanks always for being there.

  5. Cecilia,

    I’ve struggled with momentum in my blogging and my writing. When I am not writing, though, I feel like things are not right. So I sit down again and just write. Even if it doesn’t make sense, I continue. Often by the fourth or fifth page, the writer’s block becomes a part of the background.

    Glad you’ve declared your intentions here and look forward to reading more.

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