stunted growth

I think this blog has become something like the Basil plant in my kitchen. I bought it in the summer months. It was lush and green and sweet smelling then. I put it in my window in a clay pot that I bought just for it and promised it and myself that I would water it daily. I would pay attention to it…daily.

And I did pay attention to it daily…Or, at least, I did pay attention to it daily until after some months of paying attention to it daily.

After cooking with some of the leaves for weeks, I would forget about it. Or, I didn’t really forget about it, it’s just that life got in the way. I would see it whenever I washed the dishes, and I would think about it, but I always felt too busy to attend to it until its leaves would start to yellow from lack of water. I would panic then and water it, give it more sun, and baby it in the way I said I would when I first bought it. And it, being a cooperative plant, would “come back to life.” Everyday that I would shower it with some TLC, the plant would turn green again and the leaves would separate to suggest some promise.

Right now, my plant is green, but it is not really growing. I neglect it too much.

Perhaps if I did do more to it and this blog, it could yield something promising. But maybe, I’ve been thinking…maybe I don’t really want that plant or this blog to grow. I think I want to just water these things and give them enough for it to be possible for me to nurture them again and see them get green then wither and get green again. This blog, like that plant, I realize, are exercises in nurturing something just for the sake of nurturing them. I nurture the plant because I imagine myself a gardener. I nurture this blog because I am a writer.

STOP.

The assumed purpose of a blog is to grow. But I think this assumed purpose is sometimes wrong. I think some of us do just blog and have no hopes for our blogs going anywhere just because it’s something we enjoy doing. What do you think? If you are a blogger, are you nurturing your blog to grow or for some other reason? (This post was over 5 minutes, hence the length. lol.)

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2 Responses to stunted growth

  1. Only You says:

    I do remember reading on this blog that you were doing this to get practice writing, if I remember correctly…and I think that is a perfectly valid reason to have a blog! You have another one, plus you have other writing engagements, so this can be where you do all your warm up exercises. Maybe you can think of Short Little Bits as your gym? 😉

    I don’t think I started my blog with any real ambition…I just wanted a place where I could work on my writing and process my feelings, and if anyone was interested enough to join in, that was even better. (In fact, your growing and dying and growing and dying basil plant is a perfect analogy for my blog too! I should rename it The Growing and Dying Basil Plant, ha ha) Of course I want to be heard, so I did want to grow an audience…but never anything big. The closest I have come to bursting out of my small seams was a month ago, when a few simultaneous syndications brought more traffic and readers to my blog. It was exciting but unnerving at the same time, because I was so used to my cozy little circle of blog readers and buddies. I wasn’t sure what to feel or think about writing to a larger audience. But then I went a couple of weeks without a post and so I am now sort of back to where I was. I don’t have any dreams of becoming big but I figure I’ll just keep doing what I’ve been doing, and if my writing rises to the level that it attracts more attention, then that’s great, but I don’t have the energy or (mainly) personality to network and intentionally grow it. I am so camera shy that way….

    • Jessica says:

      I get this! And I can relate! I think I do enjoy this space and this post was just written in acknowledgment of my feeling that enjoying it is enough. I think it’s so easy to get warped into the idea that bigger is better when it comes to blogging. And while that may be true for some, for me, I think just being able to have a creative outlet that I can pop in to at will is enough for me.

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