Lately, I’ve caught myself frowning a lot. Most of the time, it’s when I’m trying to do something – like write, read an article online, read a book, or any task that requires concentration. Which, is most tasks, now that I think about it. Most things don’t come “naturally” to me. Anyway, I have found that the online world is a great distraction to me. I want to see what all of my Facebook friends are doing, I want to follow up on those for whom I’m praying, I want to write on my blog, or edit photos to put on my blog. I want to read your blogs…all the while five little children are needing something from me. They want to tell me about a funny thing that happened, or about something that they read or saw on a show. They want to ask me to save apple seeds for them so we can grow an apple tree. They want me to read a book. But I’m too busy – reading articles by people whom I’ve never met, in most cases, so I frown at them and say, “Later.”
At one point, I thought I could really make this blog a success, in the worldly sense. I thought I could possibly even earn a small income from ads, if I had a enough readers. But, it didn’t take long to see that the really popular bloggers worked hard at social networking – getting their name out there. A lot. Getting readers to link to them by shamelessly saying “I linked to you, you link to me”. I don’t want that anymore. Getting readers and making some extra money is not worth my sacrificing personal dignity. If readers like me, if they can relate to me, then they’ll visit. And, maybe, they’ll appreciate an ad-free site in the process? So, I’ve given up the idea that I’ll ever have sponsors or make an income from ads. And that is a very freeing feeling!
I love getting comments, but even that can be stressful. The pressure to follow up by visiting blogs can weigh me down. My thought is, “If I don’t visit so-and-so, they’ll quit reading!” You know what? I’ve left comments at new blogs, just to never hear from that person again! So, it doesn’t always work.
My children are growing up. They will be leaving soon! Okay, it’s years away, but it will feel like “soon”! I’ll blink my eyes and they will be gone. I can’t miss out on their lives because of blogging – which started out as just a hobby – I can’t be so wrapped up in a hobby that I miss out on their lives.
Is there a time and place for a hobby while raising young children? Oh yes! I believe there is! But I have to have my priorities straight. I have to have the time set aside just for that, and when the time is up, that’s it. If I don’t visit every fellow blogger, then I don’t. I don’t think it’s as big a deal to them as I’ve imagined it to be!
All of this to say, I’m tired of frowning at my kids because they’ve interrupted me while I was on Facebook or blogging. I’m tired of letting it rob me of my joy toward the most important people in the world.
I’m not quitting blogging or leaving Facebook, but I’m re-prioritizing.
If you have something you’d like to share with me, personally (not the world at large), please e-mail me directly or write on my Facebook page. If you are a fellow blogger whom I follow, I will still be following, but I may not comment very often. I may not blog as often as I used to. (I will post each weekday morning on my devotional site. Those posts are often short and always image-free, so I can blog faster.) I will also be posting less on Facebook. Oh and one more thing! I will now always reply on my own blog to comments. I used to track you down in the blogosphere and reply on your blog, or your e-mail. If you’re looking for a response please check back here. I’ve added a “Recent Comments” list on the right hand sidebar, so you can check quickly and easily for a response. I will always respond to personal e-mails and I sincerely love hearing from you in any fashion! 🙂
Thank you for your understanding and friendship!