Hey, what happened to my garden?

By Mozzercork via Creative Commons

I’m reading quite a bit online lately from other bloggers about the state of blogging. They ask: What’s next? Why am I still doing this? Should I be making money and growing my following?

Some have closed their blogs. Others have renamed and relocated under new identities. Some have cut back on their posting frequency. Some have changed the focus of their sites.

Lately I’m regarding this site as I do my seasonal garden. It goes through cycles, from birth and the early excitement of new growth, to the steady maintenance of its peak season, to the realization that the peak is followed by a slide toward dormancy. I don’t know what I’m going to do next. What I do know is that my life today is nothing compared with what it was when I started this blog in May 2007. Back then I had hours to burn. I was lonely and bored.

Today, I am more like a sweating and exhausted gerbil on a squeaky treadmill. My blog always seems to be on the other side of the glass enclosure. I start a post and something else comes up. I hit save and click away or close the lid of the laptop.

My blog is not the only thing that suffers.

Last week? I  almost missed Girl from the West’s road test due to a misguided attempt to multi-task on a rainy Saturday.

And then, later on after she passed the road test, I could not take her to get her first, official driver’s license because I could not find her Social Security card.

After that, I took her shopping for her homecoming dress and accessories. When we came home, being the neurotic that I am, I quickly gathered up all the plastic bags and boxes and broke them all down and placed them in the recycling bin and trash can. I used one of the plastic bags to empty the cat litter pans.

A day later, Girl from the West notices that one of the items is not working properly and should be returned to the store. Except … the box is cut into pieces the bag is filled with cat poop and the receipt is buried under the aforementioned cat waste. Furthermore, the garbage and recycling trucks have already made their rounds. All of it is gone.

Needless to say, she is more than angry with me. I’m angry with me, too.

Does it sound lame to say I once was an organized person? I was. I had to be. It was part of my job to be an organized multi-tasker.  I was organized enough to complete the tiring, complicated paperwork process of international adoption.

When we crossed the threshold into our home as a family of four, my organization fell to the floor along with the sour-smelling clothes from that 13-hour flight. I have not been able to get that mojo back.

What I’ve learned is that being the mother of two children, including one whose work and school are 25 miles from my house,  has proved to be my breaking point.  What I’ve learned is that in my hope of finding my place in the world, which I thought was not the workplace but maybe at home, is now up in the air. I cannot go back to the cubicle world. Being a stay at home mom has not been a highly successful endeavor for me, either. I’m hoping to find a balance somewhere.

I’m not sure what has happened. Is it mid-life brain rot? Is it the stress of the economy?  Is it because I can’t accept the reality of my situation and I keep thinking if I do this, sign up for that, join this group, I’ll find the glue I need to bind it all together?

I’ll keep you posted.

It might be a while.

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5 thoughts on “Hey, what happened to my garden?

  1. I understand. I find myself in a similar position now that work has started up. As much as I love my job, as much as I love being the motherly half of this household, it’s proving harder than I thought to mesh the two now that the paradigm has shifted. I would never think of giving up the At Home part of things; likewise I know better than to think it would work to give up my job (and not just for the financial reasons, which make it pretty much impossible anyhow.)

    I’m floundering a bit. And I’m finding that my blog(s)–check out my profile on that one (if you have time)–are in a different place of importance for me. On the one hand, they aren’t front and center. On the other hand, they’re more MINE than they have been lately. If people read, great. If they comment, fantastic. But I no longer obsess over stats (haven’t even checked them in months) or how many people are REALLY reading me or if I have any status in the blogosphere. I write what I want, read what I want, and that’s that. They serve me rather than the other way around.

    It would be insanity otherwise.

  2. Teacher Mommy: So true about the insanity part. Right now real life teeters on the brink of insanity. Adding the blogging demands to it would be masochistic at this point. I know it’s one day at a time, one problem at a time. Thanks for sticking around! I’ll hop on over to find out what you mean.

  3. As you know from reading my blog, I can relate all too well to this post. Organized I am not. Questioning my place in the blogoshpere I am. I love your analogy to the garden. For me, yours is filled with roses and dahlias and lilies so I can’t wait to see what the next season brings!

  4. It takes a lot of time to find that right balance. I can never go back to a cubical either, I am currently a Stay At Home Mother as well, and I cant always find the time to blog, write, or read, or even shave my legs. Don’t worry about us. The internet and your loyal followers WILL be here when you CAN post.

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