Though I had journaled for years, I truly started blogging regularly back in 2009. I was twenty two years old, and had recently fallen pregnant. Everything was so new and I didn't relate to any of my younger, non-parent friends anymore. I needed an outlet to document the blossoming both physically and spiritually of my being; blogging, paired with photography was the answer. Quickly, I found community within the online world-- I was connected to people going through similar stages in their lives, some a few states away and others thousands of miles across the ocean. I found solace in the witty and uncensored writing. The stories. The beautiful photos. I was inspired to document my own transformation into a young mother, a newlywed. Suddenly I didn't feel so alone.
This little blog has evolved and shifted over the years time and time again. Those of you that have been reading since I first started writing know exactly how often I have played the shapeshifter. I can never quite figure out what I truly want this space to be, but it has always been. Faithfully and loyally steadfast, waiting for me to shape and mold it in whatever direction my heart leads me. When I strip it all away and truly give myself- and the blog- room to breathe, I find that the answers come to me more clearly.
I plan on writing more about evolution in general, but that is a post for another time. What I've come to realize, however, is that transformation is natural. Just as the times change and years pass us by, the cells in our own bodies that have weakened and shifted will die, slowly making room for a re-birth of our selves that happens over and over again throughout our lives. Nothing stays the same. No matter how much we feel we are sitting still on this spinning planet, how our lives have stayed stagnant, how we're stuck in dead-end careers or tiny apartments, or how we've wasted time doing one thing wishing it were another, the fact is: everything is always moving forward. Change is inevitable. Plant the seeds for the coming year. Watch them grow.
Reflections for me have been long and deep. I've allowed myself to explore parts of myself I hadn't bothered to recognize. Maybe I was afraid of what I would find, or becoming uncomfortable. What I've learned is that this space is so sacred to me. It is a home for my thoughts - thoughts that change and evolve constantly over the years, and thoughts that are reflected in writing and photography. I am not afraid to be vulnerable, especially knowing I am not the same person I was five years ago. And I'm okay with that. This will forever serve as a documentation of the evolution of mySELF. And I encourage anyone starting a blog to keep at it. To let yourself be influenced by your surroundings. Try it all out. Try fashion blogging. Try mommy blogging. Try sponsoring. Try designing your own headers. Try creating recipes. Try taking moody photos. Try stripping everything back. Try to keep a 365 (or a 52!) photo journal. Try whatever you want. Eventually you'll find the perfect balance of what your individual space means to you, and you'll only be better for getting your feet wet in the things that interest you. I can look back and laugh at all of the ridiculous things I've tried, but will always honor my authenticity, my unique and individual journey.
In 2015 I will continue this journal. I will strive to go deeper. To strip back even more. To challenge myself even more. To document what my heart feels drawn to share, and to release what no longer serves me. My energy will be spent toward making memories with my children, honoring the earth and advocating for women, deepening my spiritual calling, making time to reconnect with my husband and strengthening the relationship with my friends.
As we begin to approach the darkest days out of the entire year, only five days before the winter solstice, I find that energy levels are depleted and my moods can be dark and heavy. What is supposed to be the happiest time of the year can often turn melancholy in an instant-- there's good reasoning for that! The universe has designed this time for us to retreat deep into ourselves and the dark sides of our lives so that we can plant those seeds of change to be reborn in the new year, rested and clear in mind and heart. I think about this year and everything that has happened on a global scale: legalization/prohibition, hate, racism, inequality, brutality, cyber security, challenges to feminism... just to name a few. There is so much happening and a revolution is coming. Just like many years before, our work in America is not done yet. We have a long way to go, and my heart is heavy for so many. In this time of darkness, my only hope is that we band together and start spreading more of our vibrant light out into the world. It's very clear that the world needs us-- ALL of us. Don't ever underestimate your voice. Keep talking. Keep LOVING. Keep praying for peace in 2015, and for always.