Why I’m Blogging

Why I’m Blogging

Writing this now, it’s hard to know where to start. I’m not kidding, I’ve already written and deleted several paragraphs. It’s not that I don’t know what I want to say, or that I don’t have an answer. I do have an answer. It’s just not a simple one. It’s been coming together piece by piece for almost a year now. Maybe that’s what makes this so hard. Everything is so messy right now.

I’m twenty-four, living with my husband in Hampton VA with a baby on the way. Our backyard is a jungle of crabgrass, curly dock, and yellow nut sedge with a giant Pokeweed and two overgrown mulberry seedlings sprouting out at the corners. The little bit that I have tamed consists of a four by four foot raised bed, a lavender, butterfly bush and two Canna Lilies. The inside of the house is just about as messy. My various crafts clutter the back corner of the sun-room. The dining room table doubles as my desk space, as well as the mail “sorting” table. The bedroom is covered in laundry, both clean and dirty depending on the day and a variety of books on any available surface area. The only room I’ve managed to save from the mess is the nursery. That’s where I’m sitting now, to write this post. The chair sits, for now in the corner next to the book shelf and somehow sitting in this expectant room makes it little easier to think.

I graduated college two years ago with a Bachelor’s in Horticulture and absolutely no feasible plan. I loved learning about plants, but I didn’t know anything about business, management, minimum wage, or hard manual labor with overtime. I figured I’d get a job working outside in the sunshine and spend the rest of my time writing, crafting, cooking, and living. I didn’t know that there would hardly be any time left, that minimum wage hardly covered a living or that my body would be too sore and tried to consider much more than sleep.

A year ago, I got pregnant with my first baby while working as a manager at a family owned plant nursery. I hated the job, but was also fiercely stubborn about it. It was the first manager position I’d been given and I loved my co-workers, even the ones that didn’t care for me. It challenged me and tortured me and pushed me to question every decision that I had made so far. A baby was probably the only thing that could have convinced me to leave. I knew that pregnant, I wouldn’t be able to perform the type of manual labor required, and I didn’t want to be an overworked, stressed mother who continually returned to a job she hated. I didn’t want my child to see me like that. I wanted to be a dreamer again. So, I quit.

I lost the baby a week later. The doctors said it was a missed-miscarriage. The little heart probably never started and it was only a matter of time before my body rejected the dead fetus. I had felt so full of promise and life only days before and now they were telling me it was dead. I waited for weeks, hoping that they were wrong. They weren’t. I thought it would get better once the death inside me was gone, but I just felt emptier.

I hadn’t given up on my goal to find work that made me happy, though. I started working on my crafts and side projects. I opened a small gallery space at a shop nearby and began sending out writing pitches. Nothing made me any money though, and every day was a struggle. I felt lost. I didn’t want to go back into my career field, but I wasn’t feeling particularly inspired either. I took a minimum wage cashier position at a liquor store near the house and told myself, I would keep on writing and that it was just for a little while.

A couple of months after I had started working I found out I was pregnant again. I was a nervous wreck. I focused on nothing and everything. I tried to write, but didn’t because it made me think about losing the first one. I read everything I could find on pregnancies and babies. I stared at baby clothes online and told myself not to buy anything yet. I let myself admit that I desperately wanted to be a professional writer and that I wanted it for me this time.

Writing was a dream that has been with me since I was little. It was a jealously guarded dream, that I rarely spoke of, but it was there all the same. I remember receiving my first diary when I was seven and asking if it had to be a diary. Could it be a story book instead? My mom said I could write whatever I wanted to. I started a story only to erase it a few months later and start again. I remember the horrified look on my mother’s face when she caught me erasing page after page from the diary. She told me I would need to look back on my writing later, but I didn’t learn the value of that lesson until recently.

Now I only have a month to go before the baby is born. I nap too much, keep getting rounder, and feel like I spend more time panicking over not having my life together then getting my life together. Then I feel guilty about panicking. That is why I have decided to make this blog much more personal than I originally intended. I knew I needed a space to practice publishing writing, but I couldn’t decide on a niche or a style. Then I realized I needed this blog for more than just a publishing space. I needed a place to be held accountable. I needed a diary where I couldn’t erase the pages when I was embarrassed about a rough patch.

So, this will be a blog that follows the daily struggles and triumphs of my messy life. It will show my budding journey as a professional writer, that I am only now brave enough to start, my love for life in all the little wonders of gardening, cooking and the arts, and my new job as the mother of a baby girl.

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