In November I asked for help to make money from my blog. The government was, at the time, threatening to take away tax credits if you had children over five and did not go out to work. For us that would have been hard, so we looked at other ways to bring in money. A few wonderfully patient people helped me to see the potential in my blog and taught me all about SEO, advertising, Amazon Affiliates and what an audience wants. I took blogging courses, read blogging optimising posts and ebooks. It was all so new to me, and to be honest I found it all hard to do and hard to digest.
I found out that writing for others requires a lot more thought, diligence and skill than I had realised. Posts which took me no time at all to write suddenly began taking hours. I lost many hours in the abyss of blog land trying to perfect posts and give my readers what they wanted. I was floundering and frankly sinking under the pressure of it all.
Blogging has always been a joy for me. When I started I had no idea I could write anything interesting enough that other people would want to read. And to be honest it didn’t matter. I was, after all, writing primarily for my children. I wanted to capture all the nuances which made up their childhood. I wanted to share difficulties and successes, because I wanted them to know that motherhood is not always easy, that we mums don’t always know what we are doing. But that was okay. I wanted to show them how precious our life was, mistakes and bumblings included. This blog was my love letter to them. I hoped in some small way it would help them navigate the waters of adulthood, a sort of mentorship if you like. Just in case the cancer came back and I wasn’t there in person to mentor them. But most of all I wanted them to know just how much I loved them and how much of a privilege it is to work alongside them each day; that my days are blessed because of them not in spite of them; that they made my life meaningful and special simply by being in it.
Over the past few months I’d lost that intentionality.
There are millions of blogs out there, and mine is very small pickings. But it is my very small picking. I adore the tiny community you (my readers) and I have created over the years. It might not be large, it might not be far-reaching, but it is special. I love the messages you leave me and the emails you send me. I love hearing about when I have written something which has resonated with you on some level and I love when we share advice or what we have learnt with each other. This is a small community but it is a tight-knit and loyal one. If my blog were a cake, writing about my family would be the sponge and you guys would be the icing.
I am so grateful for the help I received from some very special bloggers out there who are huge next to me. I am honoured you took the time to share your knowledge, your wisdom and most of all your precious time. But becoming big is not for me. I feel vulnerable and unsure of myself when I put myself in the ‘corporate’ world of blogosphere. Suddenly the words falter and I am at a loss what to write. Blogging needs to be effortless to me because any time on the computer is time away from my children and they are still at an age to need me a great deal.
The government has changed its mind. The changes which were due next spring will be put off for three years. This has given me the breathing space I needed. In three years time, who knows where Gary will be work wise? Who knows where we will all be money wise? I have decided to trust God for our financial needs. My job is to follow the path I believe He has set out for us as a family, and leave the rest up to Him.