Somebody asked me the other day why I’m blogging. It’s not making any money, is it? Nope. Not a penny. This isn’t about money. It’s certainly not about wasting time doing something that isn’t lucrative. It’s like asking an artist why he paints or a singer why she sings. Words are my passion. I love saying them, hearing them, spelling them, and stringing them together in a dozen different ways until it sounds just right. Wordsmithing is my thing. I’m not perfect at it; I’ve never taken a creative writing course (I was too busy earning that teaching degree I’m not currently using). I just write. Because I love it. And because…
It helps me sleep at night
My brain never stops. I’m always thinking and planning and wishing and hoping. And worrying and stressing. Writing somehow gets most of that out, or exhausts my mental capacity just long enough to help me get those 4-5 hours of coveted sleep. You read that right. 4-5 hours. I’ll sleep when I’m old.
It quiets my negative thoughts… most of the time.
Unless I’m writing about something that severely ticks me off or some radical injustice, I’m usually able to get it all out on paper and then be done with it. It’s that cathartic experience that everyone needs once in awhile. I haven’t ruined my keyboard yet with tears, either, thank goodness.
It gets my blood pumping.
I think about what I want to say and how I want to say it and why I want to say it, and pretty soon I’ve written pages without really thinking about it at all. It’s exciting and thrilling for me to get all the words and thoughts out and to spend so much time doing something that I love without feeling guilty about it. If exercise worked through fingers typing on a keyboard, I’d be a size 2. That would be grand!
It’s something that I’ve always been told I’m good at, and I like knowing that I’m good at something that I love doing.
I’m good at cleaning, too, but I don’t love doing that. So, I write. For the most part, I’m good at lots of things, but not one brings me more joy than writing. If you’re wondering how being a mom fits into this since I should love being a mom, I absolutely do. But, you must’ve missed my previous post, “Am I Doing Anything Right? – What the Hell?” Read it, and you’ll understand.
It helps me think.
I type faster than I write, and I type almost as fast as I can think. That’s a good thing, because the more I type, the more I realize I have a lot more on my mind. Writing helps me get it all organized and analyzed and OUT. “Out” is a big word when it comes to my writing.
It’s a creative outlet.
I’m not artistic, I’m not the best singer, and my piano is at my parents’ house. Writing is something I can do anywhere, anytime. I’m getting damn good at telling Siri what I want to write about in the car, too. I wish there were a keyboard on my steering wheel, but I don’t think that would pass those highway safety tests or please those kind officers who have moved in right down the street from us.
It helps me to get in touch with me.
I get in touch with my feelings and my thoughts and my fears and my dreams through my writing. There are times when I seriously don’t know what I want or how I’m going to get it until I write about it. I wrote pages about our dream home before we even sat down with the contractors. I needed to see it, so I wrote about it first. When we were choosing baby names, I wrote them all down, too, about a million times. I needed to see how they looked.
It helps me connect with people.
There is nothing worse than feeling isolated. Writing is a way to get those thoughts and feelings out there and find other people who are in your boat. (Now, I get those people on my blog.) We really aren’t so different after all. Except those people reading the NRA blogs. They can stay there.
I get excited when I see how many people have viewed my posts.
It’s not about the numbers for me when it comes to motivation or inspiration; I’d write if I only had one reader, my husband. But, it’s nice to know that people are reading my thoughts. It’s even nicer when they send an email, follow me on Twitter, or Like or Comment on the blog itself. The best part is when they Follow the blog. Then, I know that I’m not as weird as I think I am, because other people are reading and agreeing or reading and disagreeing, but at least we’re all reading what I’ve written.
I survived teen angst and high school through writing; why not survive motherhood and a pause in my career through writing, too.
I had a journal on my old, old Dell desktop that went on for hundreds of pages. I categorized by month, my weekly crush, my monthly conflict with my mom… well, you get the point. I can’t really remember a time that I didn’t turn to writing. Now, I get through the terrible twos and self-doubt and gripes about society and anything else my mind throws at me. Same process, same cathartic experience, just at a different point in life.
So, yes, my name is Bailey and I’m addicted to blogging. And I don’t see that changing any time soon. So, when you ask me, “Why do you blog?” my answer is going to be, “Didn’t you read the blog? What the Hell?”
*I hope you paid attention to that one about connecting with people. There are lots of ways to connect with me. Click either of the Follow buttons at the bottom of this post (one is for fellow bloggers and one is for people who want to receive email notification of my new posts), Comment on any of my posts, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow me @baileyshawley, or send me a message on Facebook. Better yet, help me connect with even more people by sharing my blog on your Facebook timeline or retweeting my posts.