The Off Ramp

Garda Sunset

Hi there. How are you holding up? Have you checked in with a friend lately? Whether you’re calling it lockdown, quarantine, social distancing…we’re in a challenging time in history, and it’s changing us all.

Last April I was notified that my custom theme subscription for this blog was due to renew. I clicked over to WordPress and canceled it. Then I started this blog post. 

For many months I’ve considered this blog and how it fits my life now. I started it AGES ago (I’m talking more than a decade). At first I was just playing around. Then it became a lifeline when I was home with a baby (then two) in England the first time, when Instagram was barely blinking its brand new eyes and Facebook still had walls.

It was a diary of the novelty of life overseas, of being a new mom. It was a place to share some of the harder things when I needed reassurance I wasn’t the only person feeling the things I felt. It was a travel log, documenting the places we went.

Wanderlynn was about our adventures, and also about my personal journey to who I am today. But I’ve always been to afraid of the vulnerability I need to share the whole story. So it’s not even the whole truth.

Technology and social media have evolved by leaps and bounds since then. Photo books. Facebook Groups. Instagram stories. WhatsApp. FaceTime. Now I can share those things, those pictures and words, much more quickly and easily. More intimately with people I care about most. All the heavier, deeper things? They still live only in journals.

Life changed, too. Living outside of the U.S. is our normal. We’ve only been stateside 2 of the past 10 years. The boys are in school, 2nd and 4th grades, with extracurriculars helping us click through the weeks at lightning speed. 

Now, specifically, we’re all at home. Or at work and home. We’re not traveling. We’re all sharing this experience of being stuck with ourselves, with our families. Each day blurring into the next.

I’m not going to pretend like I’m filling my children’s days with Pinterest-worthy projects, or whipping up Insta-worthy meals. I shepherd them through their gotta-do’s then leave them to play Legos while I stew in the baggage I’m unpacking right now. This past year’s stillness has me unloading the weight of things I’ve learned (mostly by mistakes, many of my own) about relationships, parenting, courage, compassion and privilege. Things that need a fresh space to be told.

In short: I think this space, this blog, has served its purpose. I’m thankful for it. Now it’s time to let it go.

The longer version? I don’t mean to stop writing. You can find me blathering on Instagram. I have a folder full of files of things I can’t say out loud, waiting for me to figure out how to turn them into another story. I’ll share the places we go on Instagram. I’ll journal them for our family photo books. (I’m even testing my artistic chops.) Maybe one day I’ll have a vision for a new blog. But it’s time for me to take the final exit from this page and let it be in peace with the memories it holds.

Thank you for coming down this path with me. Keep staying home when you can and washing your hands. We’ll make it.

2 thoughts on “The Off Ramp

  1. Very well written, as always. Too bad to give it up, but it does seem that the time for blogging has passed… Thanks for introducing me to it, way back when, and on to the next thing!

  2. Thank you, Marian! Isn’t it nice that we have a choice in ways to share our stories? I’m hoping to channel that creative energy into something new that serves me for where I am in life now. Ages & stages.

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