The stories that aren’t mine to share

The stories that aren’t mine to share

The stories that aren't mine to share

You may have noticed (although I understand if you haven’t!) that it’s been quiet around these parts recently. Life has been busy in a way that I’m not quite sure I understood before now.

I’ve actually been on the road more than I’ve been home (22 days out of the last 6 weeks), and we’ve spent more than 60 hours driving and taken 4 flights so far, with another trip to Florida (this time to help my parents unpack their new home!) again on Friday. Add the days it takes to prepare for those trips and recover from them once we’re home, and to say I’ve been feeling stretched is putting it mildly.

But there’s another reason I haven’t been blogging, and that’s because the things that are occupying my brain and my heart and my time just simply aren’t my stories to share.

The stories that aren't mine to share

I’m pretty much an open book as a blogger. I talk about my struggles and my successes, my fears and my joys, and there are plenty of times I simply ramble as I try to make sense of my own thoughts and feelings.

But I’ve always been careful when I blog about other people: I write a lot about my babies and toddlers, but I always ask my girls’ permission before sharing a story about one of them. For the most part Sean prefers that I don’t talk about him too much on the blog, so I will never be a sex or marriage blogger. And I don’t share stories about other people without first asking them. (I even had my mom read last week’s open letter before I posted it.)

The stories that aren't mine to share

The last six weeks have been very “others” focused for us. There’s been a lot of heartache, a lot of prayer, a lot of listening. (And a lot of joy in the midst of that too!) I recently said that life has been relentless; it’s been one big thing after another, and any time we’re tempted to relax or get comfortable, another curve ball comes our way.

And, honestly, it’s been hard for me to carry all of that around without a way to process it in writing. For whatever reason, I’ve never been much of a journaler in the traditional sense (or at least not since middle school), and it’s not something I’ve been able to pick back up as an adult. But I have come to rely on the writing process here on the blog to help me clarify my thoughts and feelings, so it’s been hard not to be able to do that.

The stories that aren't mine to share

I’m also still working my regular job for Ultimate Bundles in cracks of time…in airports and in the car, after everyone is in bed and whenever the baby is happy enough for me to lay him down for a few minutes.

Between work and a brain and heart that are stuffed full, I just can’t seem to make room to write posts about how our spiral checklists have evolved, what we’re having for dinner, or why I’m going to have to revise this year’s reading goal.

The stories that aren't mine to share

While I can’t share the specifics (or even the generals!) about the things that are occupying my mind and heart these days, here’s what I can share:

1. It’s okay to say, “I don’t know what to say.” I’m so thankful for this bit of wisdom that my mom passed on to me. Instead of hiding from the situations where we’re not sure what to say, it’s 100% okay to simply state that upfront and then listen. Hugs and sitting side by side sharing a meal go a long way, and sometimes silence is better than words anyway.

2. All people really want is to know you’re there. You don’t have to give them advice, make it better, or even fully understand. They want you to look them in the eye and say, “I hear you. And I love you. Not in spite of what you’re sharing, but just because you’re you.”

3. Margin is a good thing, but the margin is there for when life overflows. It’s okay to be intentional about your yeses and liberal with your nos, but sometimes someone you love needs you right now. And saying yes in those cases might take you from a comfortably full life to just-do-the-next-thing. But holding on too tightly to your margin and plans can make you miss out on real relationship and community.

***

I can’t say for sure when I’m going to get back to a regular posting schedule—hopefully soon! In the meantime, I think this kind of busyness might be the very definition of living wholeheartedly. I won’t be able to keep it up for the longterm, but I’m glad I’m saying yes to the people I love for now.

This Post Has 8 Comments

  1. Good advice from your Mom. The power of just showing up is huge. Also, the best time to love someone , is when they don’t feel like they deserve to be loved or can be loved. Your family is blessed to have you. You just keep showing up for them, everything else (including this blog) will still be there.

  2. This might be a crazy idea, but maybe you COULD blog about all those personal things that you feel like you need to write through in order to process? Just open a separate email and a separate blog account so that it’s in no way connected to your family or yourself? You could even make it private, but I know there’s an aspect of putting it “out there” for others to see that makes the blogging medium a more fulfilling outlet than if it were just for yourself, if that makes sense? Anyway, it’s just a thought! 🙂

    1. I was also thinking that you could write a blog entry in Word that you know you’ll never post.

  3. It’s so healthy that you recognize that blogging sometimes needs to take the back seat for a while. I completely empathize with you. We had a HARD year a couple of years ago. I couldn’t think to write about anything that was unrelated to our situation, but I couldn’t rightly blog a lot about that, either. It came right as my blog was beginning to grow exponentially, so it was so difficult to give up regular posting! I don’t regret it, though. In the long run, other things needed my attention more than my blog, and I know I would have regretted trying to juggle both.

    I hope you are able to get back to writing soon. But good for you for not letting it pull you away from what God has for you in this moment. Maybe He’ll have you write these things down at a later date, and the perspective you’ll have then will allow you to bless even more people with your writing.

  4. Love your comment about margin. It is easy to get so focused on our system of management that we let go of the priority of relationships. Have a great week.

  5. I absolutely love your quote about “holding on too tightly to your margin and plans can make you miss out on real relationship and community.” You are doing what actually MATTERS in this world. From an eternal perspective, you are laying aside that of temporary importance for that of true significance.

  6. That sentence about real relationship and community is EXACTLY what I needed to hear right now. I have been feeling so conflicted about something because of what all the “experts” say about margin and your own family coming first and blah-blah-blah but sometimes someone you love is going through a crisis and you have to drop everything else and just be there.

  7. Love this. I am just getting back into writing again this a good reminder for me. Balance is key!

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