As we bid farewell to 2016 and welcome 2017, many people think of goals and dreams for what the next 12 months will bring. This past December, I celebrated 10 years as a blogger. I started blogging because I’ve always loved writing and it was a way for me to express my thoughts about whatever I thought I should and could share.
That first blog was about being the wife of a police officer, a mom of three small children, life’s little emergencies and how we handled them. At the time, I thought I was being vulnerable when I wrote about one child having asthma and another one with an allergic reaction. Little did I know after one year of writing about those things, my world was about to explode in infidelity, divorce, emotional abuse, and those parenting dramas that have a way of bringing you to your knees.
Writing has always been my therapy. It wasn’t until I endured some heavy trials that I realized just how important writing would be. And blogging – this form of writing for internet as a digital journalist or new media specialist – has saved my life three times.
Time #1: The Divorce – Six months after my husband and I separated, the kids and I embarked on a six-week long cross-country road trip. We traveled from Dallas to Chicago to Nashville to Atlanta to Tampa to Orlando to New Orleans and finally back to Dallas. When we left Dallas in June, I had no idea when we’d be back. I quit my job, put everything we owned in storage, loaded the minivan, and hit the road. It worried my family and friends to no ends, and I decided to start a blog so they could see we really were okay. After the trip, I continued writing about my divorce and co-parenting journey on that blog for the next year and a half. During that year, I sought professional counseling, I took anti-depressants, I joined the DivorceCare ministry at a local church and I blogged. Blogging was the most theraputic that year.
Time #2: The Cancer
Four years ago this month I was diagnosed with thyroid cancer. I learned very quickly that a positive mental attitude and the proper diet would help me heal. I also discovered the power in using my voice to educate, inform, and soothe the nerves of my friends and family. I used the Caring Bridge platform for that blog but eventually wrote about them on this blog here.
Time #3: Severe Exhaustion and Stress
A routine visit to the doctor during the summer of 2015 revealed something very interesting. In addition to thyroid disease (I already take medication for that daily), I was diagnosed with Type II diabetes, anemia, vitamin d deficiency, and high cholesterol. I left the doctor’s office with 7 prescriptions when I expected to get one simple refill and be on my way. That doctor’s visit taught me that I needed to reorganize my priorities in life.
The past 18 months have been interesting to say the least, but honestly friends, being able to write about it all has been the biggest help for me. (If you’d like to read the story click here. I wrote about what followed next here.)
Over the years, many friends have asked me about blogging. I’ve helped when I could and I’ve shared as much information as possible. My most recent conversation with a friend who’s interested in blogging is what actually led me to writing this post – and some more on the topic that I plan to share periodically .
For now, if you are interested in blogging here are two printable reference sheets that can help you. If you questions, feel free to reach out to me on Facebook, Twitter, or via good old-fashioned email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Do you think blogging is in your future this year?