Why I pressed 'pause' on blogging, and why I am now pressing 'play' and not 'stop'

You may or may not have noticed new blog posts from me disappear from the interwebs since December 2019. I didn't ever intend to stop blogging, it just fell by the wayside in a busy time, weeks turned into months turned into three months, and sometime in March I realized I was probably done blogging.

Now that I haven't posted in fifteen months, I've had some time to reflect on why I needed a break, and what I need to change to return, and what is calling me back. 

The first and probably biggest reason I took a break is pregnancy. A big factor is just the pure exhaustion of the first trimester and wanting to use every spare second to rest. I have always been a do-er, and first trimester had me doing a lot of lying on the couch or in bed. More time on the computer after work was the last thing I wanted. 

Secondly, I was surprised to find out how public pregnancy feels! Suddenly all sorts of people from coworkers to random strangers are asking about intimate details of your life and feel they can give you an opinion or their own experience (hello, unsolicited labor stories). Sharing more of myself on the internet became much less appealing. Besides the exhaustion and the lack of privacy, I also struggled emotionally while pregnant, especially in the first half. I'll share more about my pregnancy journey in a future post.

Those were the reasons I originally paused blogging, but over time and lots of reflection I've come to realize there was a lot more to it. When I started blogging in 2014, it was about sharing my heart- what God was teaching me, creative endeavors, stories and encouragement. By 2019, there was still some of that, but it had also become about page views and likes and brand endorsements and how good could I make my page, posts, photos, and social media look. 

When my page went less from stories and encouragement to more and more fashion and lifestyle, it changed the way I lived in tiny ways. I spent time making my breakfast look perfect so I could take a photo to post for my monthly favorites. I was so focused on documenting places and events that I sometimes missed out on being present. My husband reluctantly took hundreds of photos of me. I put so much pressure on myself to be together and perfect- from my outfits to my menu planning to just how I conducted myself. Blogging alone did not make this happen, I think the urge to be perfect started sometime after college, but it definitely contributed. 

What had started out as life-giving had become draining. 

Ultimately, I was glorifying myself and my blog was about me. Maybe it's coincidence that, with an infant, I am in a season of life that turns any self-centeredness on it's head. I am learning so much.

So why am I returning here? 

It became clear to me when I was 9 years old that I was meant to write. I had stories to share. As I met my Savior and understood that he had created me intentionally, I've discovered that he's given my gifts and wants me to use them. The desire to write and share my heart is ingrained in me. Over the past months I've jotted down little ideas and encouragements to share as they have come to me, putting them nowhere but my journal. Now I think I need to share them.

But I want to share them to glorify God. I want to share them to encourage others and make them feel less alone. I want to share them to celebrate life and beauty and joy. I want to come here and in all places with my life with an open, humble heart, glorifying God and loving others. 

I come back here full of good intentions and clarity but know I will from time to time fall back in to a page views and likes and distraction from the present mindset. When that happens, I will take a step back, and remind myself that this is a place that I share my heart, and I want that to be from the heart.

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