I’ve said it all before. I’ve tried to find the urge to blog again too, in various times and in various ways.
But honestly? I don’t believe in it any more. I don’t feel safe doing it. The idea of writing something controversial and the meanness of what some people will do with that horrifies me, the idea of writing something that appeals, something that I put my heart into, and people thinking that I wrote it for hits, for kudos, for stats and PR approval disgusts me.
There have been so many times when I’ve wanted to write about how life is now, so many years after the most cataclysmic event of my life and worried that people would think I was using grief and Freddie’s name to generate attention. And so I didn’t write and in a funny way that was a grief too and in a funny way it silenced me in ways that were freeing and damaging all at once. I feel less deeply than I used to – and I’m not sure, in that damaged state, if you can write in a way that lays your feelings bare.
And then, the internet is not what it was, my children are all grown up with friends – or not such friends – who could google and wound and sneer and I’ve become a more private person because of that. Nor do I want them to read all my thoughts either, so that worry silenced me too. But in all honesty, the feeling that I could never match the searing need to write after Freddie’s death did it most, along with the anxiety of being seen to capitalise that.
I knew, when I was put in a position of having to monetise my blog, that it would ruin it for me and I was right, but I’m profoundly grateful for the lifeline that was at the time, without which we would have sunk hard and fast. But it did ruin it and I can’t ever go back to that. The thought of worrying about my Klout score, my stats, my standing in any community makes me feel a bit dirty now, even though I know it is still (and quite rightly and fairly) a driving force and a source of stability and self worth for many. That’s great, if you need it, or it pulls your strings, but it stopped doing so for me. It ended up being just somewhere else for me to feel inadequate. The friends though, the opportunities for contact and fun and laughter and community – oh how I loved that, and how I miss it. Even if I don’t want to be part of the endless hashtagging of my life, I’ll miss that community and I hope many of those people will continue to be in my future.
I knew, when I didn’t blog Fran’s finished crocheted 18th birthday blanket, or my first chick reaching 18 for that matter, that it was over. She left home 3 weeks ago and I didn’t blog that either. Maybe I no longer want to remember how all these things make me feel. I can’t document the enormous sense of inadequacy that children with anxiety, depression or frustrated rage give me either; my story role in that process is something I need to keep to myself – my burden and distress is part of the story that their right to privacy demands stays hidden. I don’t think I want to remember that I’m a part time, schooling mum to Bene, who I wanted so much, or a human who struggles with her weight and can’t get off the anti-depressants, or who seems to have lost her knack for just doing everything – well – all the time. So why would you have a blog if you can’t write those things?
So many bits of my life have moved on how from how I spend my week with my own children to the kids I coach each night at gymnastics or the ones I mentor at Young Enterprise and all of that is guarded by a need to privacy. And so am I, my marriage, my sense of self preservation. And once that has gone, so has blogging.
I’m not who I was in 2003 when I started these pages, nor is the world or the www what it was either. And so, I don’t think I’ll be back and, probably, I’ll be archiving much of what has been recorded here too. I have a sort of odd, half baked plan of moving some things elsewhere and writing in some new way, but I don’t know if I will. If I do ever come back to blogging, it will be in my other place, the person I grew into, not here, the blog of everything that once was.
Thanks for reading all these years. It’s been a privilege.