Most folks reading my blog today don’t know me from back in those early days, the ones after the six months or so when I never actually told anyone I had a blog; the years and years I published daily and when comment threads created vibrant community among virtual strangers.
That season was before blogging conferences en masse became a thing, when BlogHer was the only show in town; it was founded the same year I started my (at-the-time-anonymous) blog. Back then bloggers didn’t trust the internet. We typically didn’t reveal our real name, we didn’t include pictures of ourselves (for years my avatar was my feet), and we would NEVER dream of sharing images of our children.
That last one’s hard to believe, yes?
It was also before Zuckerberg figured out what Facebook was, and definitely before it caught the attention of Boomers and Gen X. Twitter hadn’t even been born. Pre- YouTube, Instagram, podcasting, and OH MY WORD–I just realized smart phones hadn’t yet been invented! (Technically, I guess they had…Blackberry and all, but I’m talking pre-iPhone….)
There are a lot of years between then and now – almost 12 – and the changes in my life since then are significant.
But this isn’t about that, exactly; nor is it about the seismic shift in blogging and how social networks forever-impacted its landscape.
It’s mostly about all the noise out there. I had to quiet my heart…my head…my soul.
Wait a second…that’s not entirely accurate. The noise does have something to do with it – there is no dearth of opinions about everyfrickingthing, and does what I write (say) add value or just more noise? – but it was more about the way I had my phone in my hand more often than not, the way I was umbilical corded to technology.
While there has been a lot going on this summer – a wedding, travel, moving, and then some – one day it was like a switch flipped, and I couldn’t do it anymore.
For a few weeks I ignored messages, emails, and who knows what else, and I shared next to nothing. It was an unofficial sabbatical of sorts, and I’m afraid that meant missing some writing obligations, too (Please forgive me if you fall into this camp? Can I beg grace??).
But it sure did feel liberating.
Anyways, I’ve been missing writing lately, and that feels good. During my sabbatical I had a revelation of sorts, and it has my brain all spinny. It’s the kind of substantive thing that will take a while to unpack, and I’m trying to figure out how to articulate my thoughts; some of them are important, and I humbly believe will bring more value than noise to the internets.
I hope a few of you are still around to listen.