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03/14/2010

Hobby Or Homework

Blogging 

I have been blogging, writing in some form, posting pictures, and social networking for a long time now. You name it, I most likely am apart of it. I have so many account/user names and passwords I sometimes can't keep them all straight. 6 years ago all I knew was email. I knew nothing of blogs and flickr and the like. Nothing. I then became pregnant, and stopped working to prepare myself for my first child and the adventures of first time motherhood. It started out innocent and simple. I wanted to document my pregnancy, keep family and friends posted on the latest with me using stories and pictures, even videos.

It snowballed I guess you could say. My blog grew. Readers and subscribers grew. Comments grew. I made wonderful cyber friendships. This was fun, and I was getting a chance to not only share with everyone about my little life, I was also able to stretch my creative side. 

I must admit, after a couple of years it started to change for me. I no longer wanted to write because I wanted to, but because I wanted to fit in. I wanted to be apart of something. Then the pressure was on to write a certain amount of posts and keep it new and exciting. Keep bringing in the readers, and more ads will keep going out. And then someday, someday I would go to conferences and meet others like me.

After my second child, my writing came to a slow stand still. Suddenly in my personal life there was heavy traffic and I was forced to slow down. There was no way around the mess of bumper to bumper vehicles. I had to wait, and yet part of me was glad to. I looked around and began to feel like the Internet and all it's social networks felt like high school. There were all these groups and I didn't know where the heck I fit in anymore. Life got busy with two kids, and suddenly time and effort was put else where. Suddenly I didn't see myself bringing in big bucks with ads or traveling across the country to some big blogging conference. I started to realize maybe I didn't belong on that level, and I was OK with that. I didn't get offended anymore when readers who use to feel like friends never stopped in and left comments anymore because they had went off to a conference and were now in with the cool kids. I was tired of the pressure put on me to always have some fresh and entertaining material to post on my personal site. Tired of feeling guilty if I skipped a week of posting. Tired of a hobby feeling like homework. So I remove the ads, write when I can, and let go of the guilt.

My kids are getting older and I have a "little" bit more freedom to write. My job is raising my kids. My hobby is writing. I intend to keep it that way. I enjoy it, if I didn't I wouldn't have a blog or have accepted an invitation to write here. I still have to wonder about all these social networking, and how it, if it does, effect us all? Can we be too involved? Can we sign up for too many? Where is the time to be moms and dads, and care for our family and homes? Where is the time to go and actually visit with friends instead of writing on the their Facebook wall? Are we too connected to Internet life? Are we too disconnected with real life? Are we too engrossed with becoming the next big blogger? Is it turning into a competition more and more? Who do you know? Who knows you? It is all taking the joy and fun out of writing? More important, what lesson, if any, is it teaching our kids when and if they see us always glued to the computer chair?

I will continue to write on my terms and when I can. I will enjoy it. It will take me no where but outside of my mind through my fingers and into my laptop. I will express myself until my fingers can no longer move and come up with thoughts until my brain shuts down.

This has been an original Ohio Moms Blog post.

You can sometimes find Randi at My Moments As Told By Me when her kids give her enough quiet time to get there.

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