Ten years ago, my sister, Erin, told me to take up blogging. She said this because I was lamenting the lack of jobs in journalism/writing/magazines, or lamenting that they paid peanuts. I had resigned myself to earning a real paycheck in project management in the tech world, but I needed a creative outlet.
“You should start a blog,” she said. I think I grimaced on the phone because it sounded so cliché, and probably embarrassing.
“Won’t people think I’m a navel-gazer?” I asked. “What would I even write about?”
She replied that there were dozens of blogs she loved reading that weren’t self-serving, and I’d find topics as I went.
“Just don’t name it after yourself. Don’t Abby.com. That’s super annoying.”
A few days and many hems and haws later, I posted my first blog about…why I am blogging. Original! But I quickly followed up with a story about making over a house in south Seattle, and one about a race to get to the symphony. I committed to posting every week for a year and I met that commitment.
Was my posting robust after that first year? Not hardly.
I’ve published 182 posts in ten years, which is very un-Victor Hugo of me, but does mean I met a larger goal of mine: to keep at it. I cannot count the number of friends and acquaintances who have eagerly started blogs with high ambitions, only to fizzle out after less than a year. This is not a reflection of their talent, only discipline.
I fault them exactly zero percent, because my last post was…October! October, everybody. That’s a different year than now.
When I started blogging, I was a working newlywed with no children. I was 24 precious years old.
Now my marriage is a preteen, I have four kids (two are 5.5, one is 4, and one is 2), and my job doesn’t even pay peanuts. I enjoy how that came full-circle.
But! I know for sure we are far, far more joyful and purposeful than when we began. And, it goes without saying (but I’m saying it), working a hundred times harder.
Which is the central reason I have failed to blog for so many months. I just don’t make the time. I miss it.
A couple of friends and I have challenged ourselves to engage in deep work — writing or creating or researching that takes a minimum of two consecutive hours. No interruptions allowed, no phone, no internet, no TV in the background. It’s the answer to so much of what ails us; in fact, it’s worthy of its own blog post, and maybe I should deep work that this evening. But I have plans tonight. And tomorrow is Friday. So maybe Monday. See how the discipline is the problem to blogging?
To you, kind reader, I want to say thank you, whether this is the first time you’ve clicked or you’ve been here for a decade — thank you for the encouragement and generous thumb-scrolling to make it to the end of the post.
This sounds like a goodbye speech. This is Abby.com, signing off!
Pshhh. As if I’d give up after ten years.
Tradition dictates that tin or aluminum are the ten-year gifts, but let’s not be bound by tradition.