Thursday, June 18, 2009

Why Do I Blog?

"Why do you do a blog?"

This question was posed to me recently by one of my students, and I have been giving a little bit of thought as to what I think is a fitting reply.

My earlier thoughts on this, although still valid, are a little bit incomplete, since my blog is no longer "secret" and "private," as it was then, and I've gotten over the initial self-consciousness that accompanies writing for an audience.

For now, for me, I would have to say that blogging is "scrapbooking for the rest of us."

I don't scrapbook. I love the beautiful products that my Creative Memories-type friends create, but I don't have a lick of that gene in me.

So, although I have no aspirations of ever being read by more than a small audience of family and friends, it is fun to post things in a way that looks and seems "polished."

And it is nice to actually get around to doing it at all.

We have photo albums chronicling my entire pregnancy with my first child, week by week. Slight changes in my burgeoning belly are captured on film and played out relentlessly over page after page. Who on earth thought this was worth capturing in this detail? I often ask myself as I trudge through page after page of photos. (The main merit at this point is a good laugh over my hair styles and the silly maternity clothes I was wearing.)

My first child has a baby book. And there's stuff in it. Lots of stuff in it.

My second child has a baby book. There's some stuff in it.

My third child has a baby box, which is the box the still-relatively-empty baby book originally came in, together with a newspaper from the day she was born, a handful of congratulatory cards, and a copy of her birth announcement.

My fourth child has an empty baby book, purchased by her grandmother but filled in by no one. Our family Christmas card doubled as her birth announcement that year. There are fewer pictures of her as a baby than there were of my belly in that original pregnancy photo album.

So, while I don't post photo after photo of every detail of our lives, sometimes I do, and so some of them are captured. And though I don't capture every deep (or not-so-deep) musing that runs through my head, I do find a quick moment to grab some of them and share. And so they are captured, too.

I guess that's the best answer I can give to why I blog. Because life is worth capturing. And worth sharing.

"There are thousands of thoughts lying within a man that he does not know 'til he takes up the pen (or, in this case, grabs the keyboard) and writes," William Makepeace Thackery.

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