Happy New Year!

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I am wandering around in a bit of a haze today.

It’s always a bit of a blurry day, the first Monday after the festive season, and this one is made no easier by our journey home this weekend from our adventures in Iceland and the USA. It took approximately twenty seven hours to get from the house we were staying in to our front door: fun and games at the best of times and made that little bit more challenging with the addition of a three year old.

It’s the longest journey by far we’ve attempted with him, and actually he was pretty amazing – he slept for almost all of the two flights and a fair portion of the car journeys. Though of course that meant that at 2am this morning I was left negotiating with a temporally confused toddler who wanted nothing more than to play.

So today is a little more blurry than usual. But in between the essential sorting I am trying to get my focus on and think about the shape I want this year to take.

And part of that has been pondering about the place of this blog.

I feel like I’ve been prevaricating for a while now – not entirely sure what I’m blogging for, but not wanting to give it up entirely. But after taking a complete break for the past couple of weeks I’m getting closer to understanding why I’m still here.

It comes back to the initial intentions of this blog really: a place to carve out my new, post-motherhood identity – for myself, and anyone else who wants to listen. After a mostly enjoyable but emotionally turbulent couple of weeks over Christmas and New Year with my family that is feeling more important than ever.

For reasons I may or may not elaborate on in the future I’ve come back feeling the opposite of invigorated – my self-esteem has taken a bit of a beating, and that sense of identity I thought I was getting closer to having all worked out is suddenly seeming more than a little elusive.

But I know it’s in there somewhere, and this is the place, I reckon, to work it all out.

That’s not to say I have entirely worked out the shape these ponderings will take, but I have the beginnings of ideas – and certainly more than enough to get me started.

I want to continue to document Arthur’s childhood, and I’m going to do that a bit more explicitly with a shift over to The 52 Project as the drive behind my weekly photo. I’ve been sort of doing it for a while, but I want to use the project now to focus my lens a little more closely on Arthur as he grows – and maybe even to inspire a shift to ‘proper’ photography rather than a total reliance on my phone.

I also want to look more closely at Arthur’s learning and development through a journal about the beginning of our explorations into homeschooling. Whilst I don’t know for sure whether this is the direction we will take when it is actually time for him to start school, I don’t see the damage the government are doing to our education system easing any time soon. Besides, I’ve already started down this road to an extent by dint of the fact that I have chosen not to send him to nursery or preschool – a decision that rightly or wrongly it is feeling increasingly important to defend.

In fact there is much of my approach to parenting which is coming under increasing scrutiny as it continues to diverge from mainstream expectations, and this is something I’m keen to explore further in the coming weeks and months. I’m intending to start with a ‘parenting manifesto’ – a summary of the principles driving my approach and what I am hoping to achieve – and as I begin to thrash out the contents of this in my mind it’s spawning lots of ideas for further posts about the choices I have made when it comes to parenting.

Finally there is of course my writing. I am still waiting on feedback on the latest draft of my second novel from my agent, but I am hoping in the next few weeks to not only have an idea about the next steps with that but also to start work properly on drafting novel number three. And as part of this whole process I’m looking forward to continuing to link up with the lovely What I’m Writing community – without whom, if I’m honest, I might not have made it through my rather sketchy year of blogging in 2015 at all…

So there you go. A little bit of focus to the haze, a few ideas to get me started, and hopefully the beginning of a bit more blogging this year. Because whilst I have a million other things going on to take up my time I have come to realise that this one is pretty damned important to my sense of self – and I owe it to myself to get that sorted.

 

Writing Bubble

12 thoughts on “Happy New Year!

  1. Nicola Young

    Sounds like your blog is the perfect place to work things out. You obviously have a lot of things going on right now too. By the way, your trip looked amazing. Hope you feel back to normal soon. The time difference and travelling is a killer.

    Reply
  2. Mummy Tries

    Happy new year lovely lady, looks like you had a fab holiday! I’m excited to hear more about your novel, I know how much hard work you’ve put into this draft xx

    Reply
  3. littlehouselea

    That picture is brilliant! Hope you recover from your trip soon and looking forward to hearing more about your book, I’m just starting another draft of mine and it’s a killer isn’t it?

    Reply
  4. Alice @ The Filling Glass

    Oh I really empathise with your reasons for starting and continuing your blog. I often get to a point of wondering why I’m doing it, and then I remember it is for my identity, and as such it’s highly valuable. I hope you find some relief from your emotional upheaval soon, and I look forward to reading more of your writing in 2016. xx

    Reply
  5. maddy@writingbubble

    Sense of self is the most important thing of all – without it we just drift I think and everything is harder. You”ll rediscover yourself I’m sure (and I’m sorry to hear you’ve had a self-esteem knock over Christmas). You’ve set yourself a lot to do this year but then you are a supremo at juggling! I’m very interested to read your parenting manifesto – for what it’s worth, regardless of whether your parenting choices are the same as mine (some are some aren’t I suspect) you’ve always struck me as an amazing parent raising a wonderful little boy (and with a fab hubby to boot!) So glad you’ve been part of our #whatImwriting group! Oh, and you take all your amazing photos on a phone?! Just THINK what you could do with a proper camera! Go for it! xxx

    Reply
    1. sophieblovett Post author

      Ah you’re so lovely Maddy – reading this almost made me cry! Thank you for the vote of confidence. I am very much looking forward to all the challenges that 2016 holds 🙂 xx

      Reply
  6. Teika Bellamy

    I’m sorry to hear that you’re not feeling invigorated; though I’m sure there are many who feel the same way as you do at this time of year. Writing will certainly help you find a path through your current struggles and no doubt things will soon seem clearer. I wish you all the best for 2016! 🙂

    Reply
  7. Emily Organ

    I love that photo! It sounds like you had a busy Christmas and perhaps a bit of normal routine will help you feel refreshed from it all. I think parenting is one of the most anxiety-provoking pressure-inducing things you can do and it’s very easy to feel others are judging you when you’re not making the mainstream choices. But you’re a teacher too so really who else is there better to teach your child? I hope the feedback on your latest draft goes okay, it can feel very up and down at times. It’s good your blog helps you and I’m looking forward to reading more on how 2016 goes for you x

    Reply
  8. nicolekkennedy

    I started reading this and thought oh wow, lovely photo, USA & Iceland (one of my all time favourite places), what an amazing festive break and then realised the post was far more reflective. I love the overall themes of this, of positivity & productivity & wish you lots of luck with all your projects this year. Look forward to seeing how you’re getting on x

    Reply
  9. Mama ND

    I too have an on-off relationship with blogging. I’m glad to see you have decided to stick with it. I hope it all works out well for you. I would love to read more about your thoughts and experiences on homeschooling. Good luck with the novel. x

    Reply
  10. Sara (@mumturnedmom)

    Happy New Year to you Sophie. I’m looking forward to hearing more about your trip, but I’m sorry that it had some not so positive moments. I completely understand where you’re coming from with regards to the blog. I’ve had a lot of ‘why do I bother’ moments in the last few months, but I can’t quite bring myself to stop, for the same reasons that you give. My blog is for me, it’s my space, and I think I would be quite lost without it. Very much looking forward to reading more from you this year xx

    Reply

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