Friday, September 9, 2011

My Big,Bold, Beautiful A-Ha Moment-Part 2

First off...a HUGE thank you to everyone that left a sweet comment regarding Part 1 of my A-Ha Moment. That post was so hard for me to write...I felt like that fat girl I once was in grade school...

awkward
exposed
vulnerable

Not quite sure what the response was gonna be. Thought maybe you'd laugh, make fun, even get mad. However...it was just the opposite. Totally blew me away and wasn't what I was expecting at all.

Your words gave me energy to stay the course.

There is no going back, people.;)


Part 2

*This may get too long and boring.  Please feel free to read as needed:)

So there I was, on Twitter, feeling not enough. Not enough of a blogger or artist or Mom or friend or cook or home decorator. Just NOT ENOUGH.

That's not a good feeling. It damages our minds, our dreams and our spirits.
Along with Twitter I found myself visiting what I call "Mega Mom Blogs". Before I go further...please understand I am not condemning these women for what they do. I admire the fact they have thousands of readers and get book deals and speak at blogging conferences.They work hard. They spend countless hours networking their blogs. And that's okay.

What's not okay is when you find yourself stopping by to read their blog with a sick feeling in your stomach and jealousy in your heart. It's not okay when you start looking at your REAL life and wonder if you're living it the way "Mega Mom Blogger" lives her life. 

"Would Mega Mom Blogger make this meal, photograph it and still have time to play a quick game with her children, whip up a craft, blog about it all, hit Twitter then go to bed only to be up at the crack of dawn for home made french toast, freshly squeezed orange juice served on a homemade, decoupaged tray, posted by 9 then off to some fabulous day of chatting with Mr. Smith about taking her Creative Biz to the next level."

Whew. This is the way I was thinking, girls. When I see it here, all written out I realize how crazy it sounds. I was really thinking this way. I was reading these blogs and tweets and comparing my life to theirs. 

I wasn't thinking about how much I LOVE to write. 
How much it means when I get your comments or emails or I see someone face to face and they say "Wow, Leslie...your words inspired me so much today. Thank you."

No, I wasn't thinking about any of that.

I wasn't listening to my Heavenly Father either. I know he gave me talents and gifts. I know he expects me to use them for good. 

Just trying to grow my blog or tweet about my life isn't living my purpose.

So I said ENOUGH. 

ENOUGH!

And on Saturday I woke up...smiling.

I told myself I am enough.

We went to the fair that night.
My family and I.


 Don't I have a beautiful family? Aren't they enough? Don't they fill my heart with joy and love?
What was I doing worrying about what others think of me? Why was a mention in a Tweet or a Like on Face Book my priority?


I have enough.
I have this family that my Father in Heaven gave to me.
He knew that these three souls would be enough for me.


And they are.

And my writing is.

And my Brave Art.

I don't care anymore if anyone likes what I do.

I like it. 
My family likes it.
My friends like it.

These are the people who care about me...personally. They support me and inspire me to do what I love to do.

My art, my writing...this blog...it fills me up. It's my purpose. To uplift, to encourage. 

Sunday after church Em and I went outside and we created together.



We had our cozy jammies, our paint, our Mod Podge...



We sat outside and smelled the fresh early Autumn air.
We talked and laughed and connected with one another.


I felt all my cares melt away the longer I sat out their, painting and dreaming and just being.
My soul felt renewed...at peace.



My Emma is one talented young woman. They are keeping an Art Journal in art class this year. She loves it...just like her Mama.



It's so bright and colorful...just like her.



I may never have a blog with 1,000 Followers.
I may never have a creative biz that makes money.
I may never have a Like again on Face Book or readers here after this post. {LOL}

But what I do have is me and my family.

I love myself.
I love that I care so deeply it hurts sometimes.
I love that I feel like I'm still in high school.
I love that I'm silly and that I sing way off key to old 80's music.
I love my kind heart.
I love this Blog.
My friends here.

I love art journaling
and paint
and getting messy
and vintage images of birds and ladies and butterflies.

I love words
and poems
and quotes.

I love reading YOUR blogs and hearing your success's.
I love it when you're real. Stay real my blog friends.
Don't get caught up in the numbers and the recognition side of social media.

If you do become one of those "Mega Mom Bloggers" let it be because of who YOU are. Let the REAL YOU shine through. If you can't blog everyday...who cares. Those of us that read your blog...we will be here. And we'll understand that you're off living your life with your amazing family. Right where you should be. 

Thank you, girls for stopping by here. For taking time away from your life to read what I have to say. It means so much that I inspire you.

Our view the day we created outside.




"People are ridiculous 
only when they try 
or seem to be that 
which they are not."

  -Giacomo Leopardi



Have a wonderful weekend dear friends!!!

17 comments:

  1. Wonderfully said. I also feel this way too and it is great to look at what we have in our life. Leslie you help to put smiles on my face or a happy beat in my heart. God Bless you Friend. Mary Langley

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  2. I am definitely feeling like this lately, although a little different. I've been really frustrated that I can't seem to get where I want to be with my scrapping. I keep working and working, and I STILL am not making the teams that I want. I'm STILL not getting published as much as some people, etc. AND maybe I'm not that good of a mom because I spend too much time working on my art, and not enough time playing with Ellie. But what I think about jealousy is that we are never going to know the whole story behind the mommy blogger, or the girl who is on 4 DTs. And not only do we not know that story, but we have a totally different one! It isn't that you aren't 'good enough' to do all of that stuff - it's that you prioritize differently. I know you spend a lot of time on church stuff - a lot of those mommy bloggers probably don't. And that's just one example.

    I know that part of the reason that Im not on a major manu team yet is that I just don't have the time that a lot of these women do. I work 12 hour days. (counting the commute) Now, how do I fix THAT problem. no idea!

    But just because we have different obligations or priorities doesn't make us less talented or less worthy. Now, if I could only convince myself...

    and on a side note - wow you brought a lot of supplies outside with you! lol! It looks awesome to be crafting outside, but Im thinking - hmm that looks like a lot of work to carry all that out there then have to carry it back in. (yep that's me always trying to save time)

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  3. Well, I've been thinking about you so much in the last couple of days - and now I know why! I needed that too - both posts are just so well said. AND you are absolutely one of my favorite mommy bloggers here - your kindness and care for others always shines through what you do and say. Including being brave enough to share your thoughts with us today. Bravo for your strength and for your renewed spirit - it is infectious. Thank you my friend, xoxo

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  4. Leslie,

    It's funny, but when I read your blog or see your artwork or hear how you are able to shape young minds with your Seminary group...it makes me think I don't do enough! :) You are so right, we have to stop and see JUST WHAT MAKES US HAPPY...is it blogs, art, cooking for an army or a quiet evening at home..

    Thanks for reminding me to "live, love and laugh in the moment."

    Love you girl!

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  5. Hey Les, I think every time I comment I say the same things about how much I appreciate what you share with us, and about your honesty, and sincerity. But its always true! I really get what you are saying about envying all these blogs. There are a few priority blogs if you will, that I am always envious of....and I add up how much they make with ads!!! Ridiculous! I can totally see a conference talk in the near future about social media, and how we are to use it for good, but that if we are not careful, it will turn into a vice. Cause I know you and I are not the only people who feel like this. It is a talent and an art to learn how to be content with yourself.

    I got a little lost this year as I have been working to make better life decisions for my family, and now, things are slowing down, and yet, here I am constantly on FB and reading blogs and wondering if I should kick up my blogging and blah blah...I even looked at my blog stats today and felt lame!

    So, Im thankful to you for sharing your moment (aha!) with us. Its an eye opener. Im going to look up your mentors post on the 90 days off FB! We did a dark week once a few years ago, no computer/tv/internet media, and it was pretty eye opening.

    Blah blah, I keep talking! As always, I genuinely look forward to your blog! Take care!

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  6. Very well written my friend! I've been feeling discouraged myself because I can't get the following numbers that everyone else has and I'm so tired of feeling bad! I appreciate the readers I DO have and I have to remember that. And I feel like I've made some REAL friends - SO important! Thanks for putting it out there and reminding me what is important! :-)

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  7. You have given me so much to think about Leslie. I have had so much blog envy lately that it has taken time away from my family and I feel like family relationships are suffering. Thanks again for being honest and Real.
    Maggie G

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  8. Thank you so much for your openness and honesty here. I read about the 90 days away from facebook earlier in the week and found it very thought provoking.

    One thing I have found I really need to do is to make a blog post only because I have something to share, rather than do something so I can blog about it. I want to blog because I live, not live in order to blog.

    As for facebook, and other online time and energy drainers, I am going to have to give them a lot of thought soon I think.

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  9. Look at you, my love, growing and releasing and moving on. I am proud of you! I know exactly how you feel . . . and for a short time, wanted very badly to BE one of those mega-mom-bloggers. The first year of my blog, I commented, I visited, I grew my numbers. I compared (I'm ashamed to say, at times I even compared OUR numbers and wondered, "How is she growing her followers so quickly?") But then . . . it started to feel more like a job. A job . . . I wasn't enjoying. And I realized that I didn't do this for "numbers". I did it for ME. To tell MY STORIES. To relate with others in different worlds. And to build relationships with a few special souls who I connected with. And, you may (or may not) have noticed - months and months ago, I started to move my "followers" screen lower and lower on my blog. Because for me, I didn't want to see how many followers I had. I didn't matter how many people followed me. And I rarely look at it now (seriously). I am in it to connect with people. To write from my heart, to share my stories. TO BE AUTHENTIC. And if that is to my best 10 blogger friends, than the 10 of us are going to have one heck of a party. I am proud of you, Les, for be true to the person you are deep inside. HUGSS!!!!!

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  10. um...hello...First of all....you are one of my idols and I will always know you as "ScrapWordsWoman"
    I agree with you completely.
    I blog for me and my friends...many of them I met online. I don't care how many followers I have. I unfriended over 500 people on FB...people I just didn't feel a conection with.
    ( bad grammar, I know) I left Twitter and then went back and unfollowed a bunch of people. I like Pinterest as a tool to store things I like and images for inspiration.
    I am out there ...all over the internet....but I am not trying to scratch my way to the top.
    Where's the fun in That??!!
    I have giveaways on my blog for one very simple reason...I have too much stuff, and I'd rather give it away than throw it away.
    Every once in a while I flirt with Etsy ...but to actually start selling stuff would take time away from my DH and dogs.
    Now I am rambling..sorry.
    I just want you to know that I read your blog and you are an inspiration and a delight.
    I am happy to know you.
    ( and how is it you have twice as many followers than me...am I not pretty? )
    xo
    Marianne

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  11. I hear ya! And you know, we are enough! I am enough and you are enough. Enough said, right? That's it, plain and simple.

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  12. I had chills going up and down my entire body as I read through your post and yes I read it ALL. I am a SAHM to 3 kids (3 yr old twin girls and a 5 year old son) I gave up my career to be with them, raise them, love them. BUT I too have asked "Am I good ENOUGH?" Not too long ago I was reflecting, watching my family and found myself saying, "I am so darn lucky" like you said, we may not have everything like the person next door, or the next blog over, but you have YOUR FAMILY and God. The grass is not greener on the other side. When moms talk too much, brag more than normal I aways wonder if they are TRULY happy. ??? probably not.

    Leslie, this is an amazing thing you are doing, because I can bet there are moms, people out there who think they are alone.

    Thank you on behalf of all the individuals who need to be remided once in a while that they are good enough as long as we do our best.

    I believe that everything happens for a reason. I never thought I'd be thanking God for sending a blog my way, YOUR blog, YOUR voice!

    ps. Emma's journal is fabulous.

    Have a beautiful weekend!
    Maggie

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  13. Dear Leslie-I had never even heard of a "Mega Mom" blog until now!!! Okay..that so doesn't sound healthy or do-able!! I totally get what you mean about comparing our lives to other people though...I read a really awesome post about it a few months back on Zachary-Rices' blog. the comparing, the jealousy, the I am not enough. It's all too much. That's why I come over here...baecuse you uplift and encouarge us...and you are real. Life is difficult enough without us comparing ourSELVES to each other and then leave feeling empty and less than. and there is nothing wrong with doing all the things you say people do on "mega Mom" but man...that tires me out just thinking about it (I ain't no spring chicken, you know!). I threw perfect (the illusion of) out the door a long time ago. xxx Stay as true and sweet as you are.

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  14. Hi, since I'm not a mom I didn't know about mega moms either. This blog has really made me think about simplifying my life. We only have so many minutes each day - spend them wisely on the life YOU want. We are all ENOUGH just being. Thanks so much!!!

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  15. Well...last night I had a momentary thought...I might try and make some bread...super mummy blog thought...you k.ow..build my life around making a blog post as I haven't done one since my mil passed away...then I looked at my hubby and said...Nah..why bother wasting all that time when o could be doing stuff with you guys....big step me!!...I know what you ate saying...I wad there at the beginning of this year and through the summer of colour...then..something clicked...I decided to homeschool my maddie ad well ad Jacob and bang...my passions were ignited agaiu was born to teach...always have and always wil...I am out of my envious stage ad I know I M super mum...that's my gift...dare I say it out loud!...but your words are comforting go know that others feel the same as I did...I am sure pangs of envy will come every now and then...but o am pretty happy now...and sounds like you are too...Yippee!!!...xxx

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  16. You're not alone, sweet friend! I can get caught up in the comparison game and the hoping somebody agrees, likes, applause. It was an addiction I had with my previous business before I resigned, waited patiently and prayerfully, took Kelly Rae's flying lessons, and started sharing my writing, photography, art. I have to conciously guard myself from falling back into that trap. That addiction I had to approval and applause and accolades caused me to make damaging decisions to my spirit, my identity, and my marriage. So, my friend, I have to continuously guard my heart. NO UNFAIR COMPARISONS! You and I and all these other talented, beautiful, hard-working moms are on our own journey to savor and to life uniquely. It's not a race, is it? We just sometimes get in race mode in our brain...at least I do. Love to you my brave friend! I am proud of you for your aha moment!!

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I appreciate your thoughts and ideas...they inspire me!! I will be visiting you soon. Have a CREATIVE day!!

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