Four years ago, when we were planning our move to KSA and I was facing the possibility of having to stay at home, The Husband suggested that since I enjoy writing, I start a blog about our life in Riyadh. However, considering what an uninteresting life we lived and what supremely lazy homebodies we were, I didn’t have a lot of interesting content to share. Also I found a job fairly easily, so I parked the blogging idea for future use.
Last year, when my daughter turned 9 months old and had a well-established sleeping routine, I found myself irking for something stimulating to do. Something that would not only fill the empty hours but also lend meaning to my otherwise monotonous life. At the risk of sounding like a horrible, pretentious person, I will admit that being a stay-at-home mother was not fulfilling me as I had hoped it would. I was missing my old life, my friends, making money and I also needed a creative outlet. The Husband reminded me of my blogging aspirations and this time I felt that I had enough reasonable content to actually make it work.
I was aware that motherhood blogging was quite a common domain and also super-saturated with awesome writers, but that didn’t deter me in the slightest. I was eager to contribute my voice, share my experiences, mistakes and everything that amazed me about the little human I had made, no matter how many times and in how many ways it had already been said. So a little more than a year ago, with very little planning and preparation, I made up my mind to set up a website for myself. Like a fool, I didn’t think about asking friends and family for help, in fact I was very determined to make my own mistakes. No regrets though, I watched some tutorials, purchased my own domain, downloaded a free theme and www.mymumdiary.com was born.
On 1st of June, 2016, I accidently published my first blog post. I hadn’t planned on doing it just yet, because no one in my family (aside from my husband and daughter) had the slightest knowledge that I was thinking about setting up a website and putting my life out there. Still, when I foolishly hit “Publish” instead of “Save draft”, I decided to just roll with it. I got The Husband out of a meeting to tell him that I was Live, so he must leave everything and get online (which he did). I then called my sisters, brother and parents (who had to be explained in detail what a blog is). I signed up to Facebook, which I had never felt the need to do before and shamelessly started telling everyone I knew of my new endeavor in hopes of getting some traffic to my website.
To be perfectly straightforward, I credit blogging for my present contented state of mind. A year ago, I was not only bored, I was a little sad at my inability to be fully satisfied with my new life and with the gorgeous baby I had waited so long and hard for. Writing about motherhood exposed me to its lighter side and helped me find humor in everyday situations, sometimes at the expense of my daughter. It also helped me connect with my own self and taught me to listen to my inner voice and be aware of how deeply I felt about certain subjects. Blogging about my life has also provided with me many opportunities for self-evaluation, which consequently is leading me to becoming a better version of myself, someone my daughter can look up to and aspire to be like. I am a person with an enormous tendency to brood and look at the negative aspect of every situation. I also tend to create issues out of thin air when I am not in the right state of mind, eventually hurting my husband. Writing has helped me contain this side of my personality to a great extent. And I won’t be wrong if I said that blogging saved me from myself.
Exactly a year has passed and I still can’t get over the rush I get immediately after publishing a post. I refresh my dashboard as often as I can in the ensuing hours to see how many views I have had so far and nothing excites me more than receiving comments on my website. I read, re-read and cherish each one and just the idea that someone took out the time from their busy day to read and comment on my writing fills me with so much gratitude that I cannot even attempt to put it in words. I am humbled by the kind words of appreciation and regard that I receive but I am equally grateful for the contradictory points of view to my ways and methods. This has taught me to value feedback for what it is worth and be more accommodating and tolerant in the light of a conflict. I have also found blogging to be extremely rewarding. I am aware that some of my blog posts in particular received a lot of attention, were widely read and shared and also inspired a few readers to make small changes to their lives. In my opinion, this makes the entire exercise worthwhile and is a huge source of motivation for me to keep on writing.
If you had asked me a year ago whether I saw myself writing and publishing a year down the road, I probably would have said no. I started blogging with no promises to myself, no long term goals. It was merely something I found interesting enough to invest time and energy in when I had snippets of free time during a very busy day. But over the course of this year, blogging has become an essential part of me and the fabric of my family. Now I am comfortable enough to say that this is who I am, and this is what I do.
Thanks for sticking around!