10 Things I Learned from Reading My Own Blog
1) I have made some amazing friends through blogging. I was blown away when I read through some of the comments, encouragements, and suggestions that came particularly from RevGalBlogPal friends. I’m not sure how I would have made it through the days of having toddler “twins,” or the ups and downs of ministry in my previous call, or the illness and death of my sister without you. I cannot say thank you enough.
2) It is almost as good as a baby book. Being a single mom of three and a solo pastor did not leave much (um, I mean any) time for keeping baby books for the kids. I have piles of unorganized pictures and I have my blog. I got all kinds of warm fuzzies and chuckles from reading little things I wrote about what they had said and done. I am so glad I have those stories!
3) I apologize too much! Good grief! How many times did I apologize for skipping a week or so between blogs? (I’m sorry. I’ll be back. I’m a horrible blogger . . .) Enough already!
4) And on that same theme: I am extremely hard on myself. When I fall behind on my blog, or when my house is a mess, or when I feel frazzled at work or with the kids, or when I forget to do something, I apparently tend to beat myself up. No mercy! So many times my friends would point this out to me (see #1 above), but I never got it until now. I have three kids. I have a demanding job. I have a home. I have laundry, dishes, cooking, dusting, etc. I have pets. I have friends. I have myself and my own goals and dreams. I cannot do everything and do it all well. Give yourself a break, Jan! And if you’re like me, then give yourself a break, too.
5) Why did I quit the RGBP Friday Five? That used to be so much fun! I need to jump back in, or at least do my own personal Friday Five again.
6) Most of us have body image issues. How do I know? Because every single post I wrote on my own struggles received so many meaningful comments from people who identified with me. Girls – and guys too sometimes – we have a lot of work to do!
7) Life ain’t always beautiful, but it’s a beautiful ride. I’ve been through some serious hard times over the past several years. The most earth-shattering was the illness and death of my sister. I had parishioners in my previous church who went through hell, and as their pastor I went with them. There were challenges in ministry and the search for a new call. There was that long stretch of time when it seemed that at least one, if not all three of my children were sick all the time. Still, even in the hardest of times there has been meaning and companionship and hope.
8) There are some gold nuggets hidden among the sh*tty attempts. I am not the greatest writer, even though I would love to be. In spite of all the banal, poorly written, belly-button gazing crap, every now and then I’ve written something that I’m proud of.
9) Facebook and Twitter have changed the face of social media. It used to be that blogs were the only forum I had to interact with many of you. Now we’re friends on Facebook and/or we follow one another on Twitter. It’s faster and easier to post a status update and/or a 140 character (or less) tweet. I know more of what goes on with you day to day that way. The blog is not dead yet, however. Many of you have remained consistent through the years and some of us, like me, are getting back in it. There’s a place for everything, it’s just finding the balance.
10) I am not finished with Preacher Mom. I may never have a following any greater than what I have right now, but Preacher Mom is an extension of me. I came close to closing out the chapter on her, but after reading my life for the past 6 years I see the value in keeping it up, even if it ends up being primarily for myself. Not that I want it to remain that small . . . So, hey friends – come back! And bring some friends with you!