It’s been a little quiet around this neck of the woods lately, i haven’t been on social media and i haven’t blogged consistently for a month or two. I can’t say i have missed it. Not in an “i’ve fallen out with blogging” kind of way, but more of a “wowsers, life is pretty hectic” kind of way. So i wanted to let you all know why, even though i’m probably flattering myself to think that you’d even noticed.
I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS). It’s not something i often talk about and to the outside world i can look perfectly normal, but CFS causes persistent mental and physical fatigue (exhaustion) that affects all aspects of everyday life. Fatigue that doesn’t go away with sleep or rest. Throw a couple of kids into the mix and it’s quite the deadly concoction. I’ve lived with the condition for 13 years now and though i manage the symptoms pretty well most of the time, it has a habit of creeping up on me when i least expect it and totally knocking me for six. Which is exactly what’s happened over the last 8 weeks or so and is the main reason for my absence. Sometimes you just have to take a step back from everything, re-evaluate and have some time to yourself.
During this time, it dawned on me just how much time i usually dedicate to blogging and social media and though the first few days were torture, by the time i was feeling more up to things, i found myself completely uninspired and with no real urge or desire to blog. Blogging suddenly felt like a chore and something i had to do rather than something i loved and wanted to do.
And i realised……too much of a good thing can generally become a bad thing.
Like eating chocolate. And dipping your fingers in the sweetie jar. And hitting the gym. And watching YouTube videos of people that you’ll never actually meet.
It is also true of writing blog posts and twittering and Insta-snapping and Facebook stalking.
Because I’ve seen Mr B go to bed resentful. I’ve heard Riley calling for mummy again, and again, only to hear me say, “Hold on, i’m almost done.” I’ve had Harry tug at my trousers to get my attention only to find himself turned away and distracted with the TV or a toy. I’ve ignored dishes that should have been cleaned and dinners that got overcooked, and i’ve sacrificed sleep, only to be irritable the next day.
All for the pursuit of connection with a virtual community, more visits to my site, recognition from other bloggers, opportunities from brands and a louder applause from my Facebook insights or monthly stats.
And a good thing, then quickly morphs into too much.
My main problem is time, or really the lack of it. Mr B works away all week and is only home at the weekends, so the boys and i pretty much go it alone. Blogging is something that is usually done in the evenings when they’re in bed, but some posts take longer than others and i’ve been struggling to keep up with blogging and social media while looking after the boys, juggling the housework, dealing with my CFS symptoms and holding on to my sanity. At some point, something has to give.
And the last few weeks, it has, blogging and social media. I’ve not written a single post, i haven’t checked my stats, i can’t remember the last time i was on Instagram, i’ve been less active on Twitter and i’ve barely used my Facebook account.
And you know what? I don’t feel guilty for it, in fact it feels pretty bloody good!
The boys and i have been for evening strolls along the country lanes, we’ve walked over to Nanny’s stables to feed carrots to the horse, we’ve had longer bathtimes and more bedtime stories. We’ve witnessed Riley learn to ride his balance bike. We’ve had late night bbqs in the garden, built sandcastles, made mudpies, watered the flowers and constructed dens. I’ve done more for me too and i’ve loved every single second of it.
I have accepted that i simply can’t do everything and i shouldn’t try to either.
I have accepted that i am never going to be a full time blogger and i’m not obligated to whip out posts on a consistent basis if i don’t feel like doing it.
I have accepted that the moment when something you love, look forward to or feel passionate about feels like a chore – it’s time to take a step back and give yourself a break. Stay away from writing blogs. Give yourself time to appreciate the blogging community and your place within it. Take some ‘Me’ time outside of your blog.
That’s exactly what i’ve done and it was the necessary reset i needed to come back with a BANG. I’m feeling inspired and have so much to tell you all about.
The beauty of blogging and being apart of this community, is the fact that everything written, is out there for always. Everything i think i have missed the past month or so is still there waiting for me to see.
So, to my loyal readers (and social media followers!) – thanks for sticking around and bearing with me. To my favourite bloggers and usual ‘daily reads’ – i will be round to catch up and comment on all of your lovely blogs as soon as i can.
Lots of love, Vikki xxx