Being Enough

One year ago, I began this blog.

One year ago, I felt pretty lost. Everyone around me was doing so much, or so I felt. I didn’t feel competent enough. I felt I was being too complacent, too cowardly, too negative. This blog began as an attempt to revive my love for writing and… and something else; something that I couldn’t quite place.

I had been mulling over blogging for at least six months before I started. But for some reason I never felt I could go through with it. I had stopped writing since a long time, and it didn’t come as easily as before. I had no idea of what would be acceptable to publish. The first post had been sitting drafted on my computer for a long time.

File:Stipula fountain pen.jpg

Photo via Wikipedia Creative Commons

One night though, I made a snap decision. Past midnight already, I opened WordPress.com, chose a cheesy URL, picked out the first theme I saw and hit publish.

When I started blogging, I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to come out of it. I liked writing, but had pretty vague ideas about what exactly I would write. I was being affected by too many other bloggers who had their own style. There were bloggers who had weekly features, who wrote fun stuff. For some time, I tried doing all of that. There were several posts that I published and then deleted. Nothing worked; it just wasn’t me.

For several months, I wrote just for the sake of it, struggling even to publish just once a month.

A change came around September. I participated in a blogging challenge. I wasn’t able to finish it, but I wrote more than what I was previously doing. I think it was significant in two aspects; one, that it helped me get rid of my writers’ block, and two, it gave me the courage to publish without spending ages on revising it.

I remember the first follower I had, the first time I got a comment, the first time someone “liked” my post. I wasn’t sure what exactly I was seeking; validation perhaps, that there were people out there who liked reading my thoughts. I remember signing in with anticipation every time, getting excited when I saw something orange on the top right corner of my WordPress account. A follow made my day, I liked being “liked”. The time I hit a 100 followers, I was over the moon; there were so many people who were reading my blog.

In the past few months though, a change has come. I still smile when someone “follows” or “likes”. But I am the happiest when the orange button indicates a comment.

I’ve finally realised why I started blogging. What I wanted the most was conversation.

It’s not like I don’t have friends; I do, and they are great friends. But they all know me in bits and pieces. I discuss books with some, poetry with some, feminism with a few others. I talk about stuff close to my heart, the things that make me wonder, the things that I fear, my musings generally, with certain others. This blog is where all pieces of me come together wholly to form the mosaicked selfย  that I am.

Over time, I’ve figured out a rhythm for myself. I’ve developed a voice that I can see myself talking in. More importantly, I’ve become brave enough to put myself in the posts. I no longer feel the pressure to publish twice a week; I know now that thrice or four times a month is more suitable for me. I write what I actually want to write about, taking time to articulate what I have to say.

I never was comfortable writing poetry before. I think it has something to do with the fact that my father is a Ghazal writer. Ghazal is a very restrictive form of poetry; there are a lot of rules to be followed. Somehow I always felt it would be too much work to write poetry to be able to enjoy it. When I started blogging, I also started reading more blogs. Though I knew this before theoretically, it was only then that I finally internalised that poetry didn’t have to be restrictive. I have no idea whether my poetry is any good, but I don’t feel conscious about it anymore. I write it because I like to. Blogging has given me this gift.

It is here on this blog that I’ve talked about overcoming failures, about obedience, about being good. It is here that I’ve come to terms with why I am the way I am. It is here that I now feel I am enough.

Thank you. For reading, for sharing your thoughts, for conversing. I appreciate it.

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14 thoughts on “Being Enough

  1. Ditto. Conversations.
    I am an aspiring writer, among a host of other things. 800 pages and still a lot to be worked upon- for which it is difficult to take time out. The question was, why blog then?

    You already know the answer now ๐Ÿ™‚

    Most of the posts which I come up with are like appetisers. The real fun is when people pour in with interesting, and constructive suggestions. Comment section is far more illustrative than the post- and I love it.

    Glad to have bumped onto someone who feels the same about things ๐Ÿ™‚ Major relief.

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    • I’m sure there are a lot of bloggers out there who feel exactly the same. I’ve had the most interesting insights in the comments sections; of my blog as well as the blogs that I read. It’s very gratifying to have people come up with their own ideas and experiences that they relate to what you have written.

      Like

      • Most of the bloggers are not so proactive in their comment section, and thats a bad thing. “thank you” or smiley or something like that is such a turn off… Job is over as soon as they hit the publish button ๐Ÿ™‚

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  2. Yay, the conversation is great, isn’t it! I have friends too, but too often I’ve gone round in the mood for a deep conversation about something I’ve read or experienced, and they are not in the same place as me mentally after a heavy day with young kids or whatever and I end up discussing music lessons or grades…

    Also I agree about the voice. I’ve found blogging has been very good for making my voice in fiction writing more lively and engaging, because I’ve realised that lively and engaging is what I like to read and what others like to read in me.

    congrats on your anniversary and what you’ve achieved.

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    • Hello and thank you! Yes, this is exactly what I meant; that others may not be in the same place mentally. But the best part about written words is that you can always come back to it later. This is why blogging (and emailing and writing letters) makes so much sense. As a reader too, I like to re-read certain posts and comment afterwards if something comes to my mind later. Putting in the time to mull over something enriches the conversation, I’ve found.

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  3. I am struggling to find what I want to write about & what I should or should not publish. After reading this piece you have writing I know I need to just be myself & write about anything & everything I feel comfortable with. Like you say it does not matter if publish something every-day or once a month it is about enjoying the whole experience of the writing & publishing of the piece you are doing at that time. Thanks

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    • You’re welcome! ๐Ÿ™‚
      I’m glad that my piece was of help to you. And you’re right; if there’s anything that I learnt in the past year, it’s to be genuine. I hope you enjoy writing and that you find your blogging voice. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. Conversations are very good but don’t take validations/judgments on internet too seriously. Internet is totally different from real world; so many people write spams, promote their blogs on the comment section, hit the like button without even reading a single word of the blog post. I was told by a senior writer – Good writers don’t write for the readers, they write what they want to write. So, that thing I always carry in my head. ๐Ÿ™‚

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    • That’s true. I’ve had my share of blog promoters; commenting just for the sake of it. But then, I’ve also had some people who’ve actually taken time to read and who put some thought in their comments. The number of such readers is less, no doubt. But I suppose I’ve been lucky. ๐Ÿ™‚
      It’s an excellent advice; to write what you want to. And I’ve found that there’s a reader for whatever you write; blog is a platform that reaches a variety of readers. ๐Ÿ™‚
      Thank you for visiting and commenting. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  5. Fantastic post! I “revamped” my blog back in March, having started it two years ago and only posted twice (talk about feeling like a failure!). Follows and likes are amazing, but I agree with you that the conversation is what is desired most. The sense of community that WordPress brings is so fantastic. Knowing that people enjoy and appreciate your work enough to want to discuss it further with you is SO rewarding!

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    • Thank you, Christina! Welcome to the blog. ๐Ÿ™‚
      You’re right; WordPress does give that sense of community. I think it’s great that you decided to come back to your blog after two years. A lot of people wouldn’t do that.

      Like

  6. Pingback: Blog Review: 2014 | The Writer's Nest

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