Did you even realize I was gone for a week?
Last week was my first “not posting because I did not have anything prepared to say” Wednesday since I started the blog in January of 2016. Did the tectonic plates shift? Did the world stop spinning on its axis? Are icebergs melting at the polar caps more rapidly? Has the Liberty Bell cracked once again?
It sure felt like it. To me.
I am sure that most of you are only aware that a Wednesday has come and gone without a Terri LaBonte morsel just now as I bring it to your attention. You are probably reading this and saying, “oh, yeah, she didn’t publish last week.” After all, I know that most people are understandably too wrapped up in their own lives to be unduly concerned about the absence of one weekly blog post. I am not self-absorbed enough to think missing a week of Terri time counts as a problem in your lives.
Since this blog is all about me, however, I did want to share how not posting for a week impacted me.
I was fidgety the week before my FTP (failure to post) and could not settle myself. It was like there was something that I was trying to forget, but just could not. A vague conception of there being “something” up in the air never left me. That feeling was probably bigger because I kept pushing it away from my consciousness until it was about something amorphous and intangible rather than a specific task. I think I used to get like that when I was working, too. There might be something I did not want to do that I decided I did not have to do. The task would not completely remove itself from my mind. I did not focus on it enough to name it and vanquish my dread about it but did focus on it enough to keep me awake at night. It was kind of masochistic. I made a conscious decision that I did not have to do the task, but still seemed to believe I had to feel guilty about it. I think it is important to do the right thing in life. It does not have to be important to feel bad about not doing something that you have intellectually decided is not a moral imperative, however.
When Wednesday morning came around and I did not publish a post, I had a sense of failure. Even though nobody cared, I felt like I had somehow let someone down. Maybe it was just me I was afraid of letting down. It seemed a defeat to me. That was especially true because I did not spend any time at all last week working on my new book, which was the whole reason I decided to post less regularly. The idea was that I would allow myself to skip the odd week of blogging in order to use my writing time to work on my book. I did not write at all last week. Just typing this feels somewhat like a shameful confession.
After Wednesday, I started compulsively checking my blog statistics to see if there was any negative impact from not posting. You would swear the blogging stakes are much higher than they are. I did not see any particular downward trend in views or visitors. Even if there were a downward trend, what would it matter, really?
Of course, I know that I do not have to have a reason to skip a week. Writing is my pleasure and if becomes a chore or a stressor in any given week, I should respect those feelings and take a break. No one is paying me to write. Blood will not be spilled if I do not write. The pandemic will not spread further if I do not write. You all have supported my plan to only write when I feel called to say something interesting… even if it is only interesting to me. In short, there is no reason for me to have such complicated, unpleasant feelings surrounding the issue.
I suspect that the unpleasant feelings stem from something much bigger than just not posting for a week. COVID crazy has been eating away at me this week. Everywhere I turn, there seem to be challenges and barriers. My book is not going well just now. I have a book club meeting coming up and I have not read the book… nor am I particularly interested in doing so. I guess there seem to be a lot of barriers in my way just now. I think I will probably get over it, but I would not put money on the result. As I said, I see my current mood to be a kind of lifelong pattern.
I have said it before, and I will say it again. The most difficult change most of us will ever undergo is changing our minds.
So, did you miss me? How did you use the 2.1 minutes you usually spend reading my blog? I hope it was something fun.
Have a useful day!