It’s been over eighteen months since I started this blog, which still surprises me. I’d be lying if I said everything has gone according to plan, mostly because I didn’t exactly have a firm plan in mind when I started this blog, but also because writing my own blog turned out to be a very different experience from anything I could have imagined.
My initial idea was to write about adjusting to this new phase of my life that is called “middle age,” and to share some of the challenges and joys that come with it. I thought that my close friends, and possibly some of their friends (and of course my mother), would read it and leave a comment now and then. Of course I had moments when I fantasized that my blog would be wildly successful so that I could earn big bucks from it and, more importantly, rub it in the faces of all the editors who ever rejected my manuscripts (“See what you missed out on!”), but that was never an actual plan.
But like so many things in life, the realities of blogging turned out to be quite different from my expectations. My mother does read my blog (thanks, Mom!) and so do many of my friends, but I was pleasantly surprised by how many of my older and friends and acquaintances, some of whom I haven’t seen in decades, were also not only reading my blog, but taking the time to let me know that it spoke to them. I had no idea my blog would reconnect me so powerfully to my past, but it did.
Although my original intention was to simply write about being middle aged, I found that even after adjusting my posting schedule to only twice a week, I soon ran out of things to say on that particular subject. There are only so many posts I can write about fading eyesight and memory, sprouting hair where hair does not belong, developing new wrinkles and sags on a daily basis, and adjusting to being part of the sandwich generation, etc., without repeating myself and boring my readers. So I branched out, and began writing about other things that were going on in my life and the world around me, and nobody seemed to mind too much. Or if they did, they were nice enough not to complain.
Of course, there are a few aspects of blogging that did go just as I expected. I have always struggled with technology, and continue to do so. Writing my posts is the easy part, figuring out how to add links, size photos correctly, and change the format is much harder for me. There are times when I can’t answer comments without exiting my page and then coming back to it, and sometimes I can see how many Facebook shares a post has, and sometimes I can’t. Don’t ask me why. When I contact the WordPress help, the answer is usually that there must be something wrong with my computer. Of course.
Still, the nicest and most unexpected perk of blogging has been how many wonderful other bloggers I have met. These are people who are busy writing their own blogs, and yet still take the time to leave words of encouragement and wisdom on my posts, or comments so funny that I laugh out loud when I read them. Their blogs have become “must reads” for me, even on my busiest of days, because they are that good. I’d like to especially acknowledge Kim over at www.kimgorman.com, who writes a wonderful blog about meeting the challenges of life with determination and grace, and whose writing never fails to inspire me. She is a recent recipient of the Sunshine Blogger Award, and deservedly so.
I always knew that I enjoyed writing, but blogging is more than simply writing. It’s building a community, sharing ideas, and best of all….making new and wonderful friends. Thank you all for that.