So...nothing like declaring you're going to write on your blog every day for the next 31 days...and falling on your face on day three.
The timing of October's 31 Days challenge was rotten this year. We got home at 9PM on a Sunday night after 16 days out of town and had to hit the ground running Monday morning. I had just four days to catch up on laundry, juggle the usual household tasks, attend soccer games, deal with extra makeup homework, take a sick kid to the doctor, and finish preparing for a speaking engagement. Then I hit the road again on Friday for a women's retreat. Whew!
Because I was going to be gone all weekend, I needed to have my first four posts written and scheduled to publish before Friday morning. The truth is, I *could* have gotten this done if I'd managed my time better Monday through Thursday. Story of my life.
Even though I didn't have it all done before I left, I still went ahead and published the first two, holding out hope that I could finish up day 3 while I was gone and maybe get day 4 thrown together late Sunday night after I got home.
Again, I probably *could* have made even this happen, but when it got right down to it, other choices were wiser to make: deep conversation into the late night with an old friend. Being present with my family after a weekend away from them. Sleep.
So once again real life takes precedence over blogging, and I'm sort of #sorrynotsorry. I want to be a woman whose word means something, so I hate saying I'm going to do something and not following through. I also hate my ongoing failures to make wise choices about how I use my time. For those reasons, I'm frustrated to have dropped the ball.
On the other hand, my failure was in the end due in part to wise choices made. It's not like I let anyone down personally by not blogging (it's more like no one noticed or cared). And the reality is, it's good for me to fail publicly. It's good for me to be humbled, and it's good for others to see that I don't have it all together.
Among other things my friend and I discussed on Saturday night, she shared how knowing me exclusively through my blog for the last decade (after knowing me in real life when we were in high school and college) had led her to think maybe I was some sort of ultra-wise spiritual superstar (that's my summary, not her words--I can't remember how she actually put it). Thankfully a couple of days spent with me in the flesh set her straight :P
It's easy to forget that when we read blogs and Facebook/Instagram feeds, we are only getting a narrow slice of someone's life (especially when that someone blogs as infrequently as I do). No matter how much I try to be genuine and authentic, you just don't see the whole picture. This is something I want to be aware of and careful about. I don't want to craft some sort of misleading online persona; I want my writing voice to ring true, to sound like the real me in real life. At the same time, it's the nature of the beast--and, it's also worth remembering that everyone doesn't need to see everyone else's tender and vulnerable spots. There are parts of my heart and my life that are precious and private, things that I do not put here for everyone not because I am hiding, but because they are reserved for those closest to me, those who are invested in my heart and my life.
All that to say, if you are also reading along and have ever been tempted to think highly of me--by all means, let me set you straight on that immediately. I am broken. I am a mess. I can't even make it to day 3 of a 31-day writing challenge :)
I'm still going to come back to the 31 Days of Italy thing. I have lots and lots of stories and photos to share, and it will do me some good to get those down while they're still fresh. So, look for it starting back up tomorrow.