“My mushy blogiversary post that I don’t want any of you to feel obligated to read, but that I feel like writing anyway.”
Warning: This is wordy and not full of nifty pictures. If you make it to the end I’ll send you a gold star for your paper.
(Not really. But I’ll love you for it, which is almost as good as a gold star.)
In my Blogiversary Giveaway post I mentioned that on April 11, 2010 I hit “Publish” on a post that had sat in my dashboard for 2 days. The blog had been ready two weeks before that.
Hubby had been trying to convince me for at least a month to start the blog I was always talking about but that’s all I was doing. Just talking.
(Hopefully he doesn’t regret that now. haha. Love you baby. ;)
I was terrified to hit that Publish button.
Some back history for you –
I had always been a crafter and sewer. I think I got my first sewing machine as a 15 year old – my folks bought it through the Want Ad’s and I LOVED it. Even took it to college.
Yeah. I was not your typical college co-ed. haha.
I think crafting, creating, and art run in the blood in our family. It’s amazing how something that is so much a part of you can be taken for granted.
When my kids were little I allowed circumstances in my life to dampen my love for creating – and for a lot of other things. I have always been pretty insecure, and for several years I allowed someone else to dictate what I could do, what I should think, and really, who I should be.
I don’t want to go into a lot of detail about that, because it’s not the point of the story.
But I basically left that relationship happy to be free but unsure of a lot of things. I had to reinvent myself. Or re-find myself.
For a couple of years I spent time focusing on my family and reestablishing my priorities. We became closer than ever. I was able to get a job that I felt successful at. (Also a new feeling.)
But after a while I felt like I needed something else. Something for me. But I was still fighting those old feelings of not sure what I could do and be good at. Does that make sense?
I was needing to come up with a birthday gift about 2 years ago for my darling neice. I wanted a cute little monkey. In browsing around the internet I came across a darling pattern for a softie monkey – on a blog. Well good gracious.
Could I make her a monkey??? I think I could!
And what is this? A blog about making things??
“Aaaaaaaaaaaah!” (That is the heavens opening and the angels singing.
I spent hours on the computer after that, starting with the blogs on her sidebar and then hopping from one to another, just loving this world of creative women sharing what they loved doing.
I started adding blogs to my reader, then, of course, I started making things again.
I felt like I had come home. To a home all decorated with cute pillows and Anthropologie clothes. It was nice. :)
Then I had to start taking pictures of the things I was making and sending them to my sister. (She was very patient with me sending her multiple pictures of the same project. haha)
I began to talk about starting my own blog. But I was sure that I wouldn’t have anything to write.
And I was sure that no one would read it. :) I don’t think that’s anything new to anyone starting a blog.
But my darling hubby supported me and nudged me into starting. When I was featured the first time (thank you Becca from Blue Cricket Design!!! :) my whole family celebrated.
My kids would ask how many people came to visit the blog each day. (Not very many haha)
With each successive post I started to feel like I could maybe do this. That maybe by blogging and creating that I could get past those feelings of insecurity and the damage I’d done, and heal.
That sounds terribly sappy but it’s true.
Here is what I’ve learned this year. It’s not terribly profound to maybe anyone but me.
• Being creative is like building a muscle. (Which I also need to do. ;)
The more you use it, the easier it is. The more you create, the more you think of things to create.
(That’s not to say there aren’t dry spells, but that’s a different post entirely.)
• That it’s ok to put yourself out there. Whether people like what I’ve made or not, the important thing is that I like it.
(That doesn’t mean that I don’t love hearing that you like it too. ;)
• That I still have so much to learn. And that’s ok. Whatever happens on this blogging journey, this last year has changed who I am, for the better.
At lot of what I have learned has come from you. Hopefully you all know by now that your comments and emails mean so much to me.
And I feel like we’ve become friends. Real friends – some of us just haven’t met face to face yet.
I still face those insecurities, not as often as before, but I still do. Hello Starburst Mirror. (You have no idea how close that came to not getting published.)
And this isn’t a post designed to make you feel like you need to tell me how awesome I am all the time so I don’t flip out – but feel free to do that anytime. ;)
It’s more that if someone as confidence-challenged as I was can step out and be brave and blog and go to conferences and teach – then I encourage you to step out in something you are afraid of and just do it. I guarantee that you will be glad you did, whether you succeed or not. But you can’t succeed if you never start.
(That is not my profound thought for the day. It’s someone else’s but I don’t know who. ;)
So thank you for reading and commenting and checking in on what’s going on here for the last year. Those of you that were here from the beginning? Double thanks to you for sticking with me.
Thanks to my family for always reading and letting me know what you think and finding most of my spelling and grammar errors to keep me from looking like a dork.
And thank you for my blogiversary celebration cookie!
You know your sister loves you when she buys you a giant cookie and has them decorate it with your blog logo. Love you Cin.
I am so excited for this next year with Flamingo Toes and you all. I don’t know what it will hold but I know it will be great!!!
And if you made it to end – yay!! You get a gold star! :)