I haven’t posted in quite a while. Okay –since June 20th, to be exact. I’ve got plenty of good reasons (or excuses, take your pick.) I was unfocused/journaling instead/reading instead/cooking instead/swamped with work/bored/tired/happier hanging with friends/unmotivated/lazy. Eventually it became the kind of thing where, the more time passed, the guiltier I felt. And the more it felt like an obligation. And you know how that goes. I felt exactly like I do when I haven’t called my parents for three weeks.
It’s not like there hasn’t been anything to write about. My journal is, in fact, filled with notes about things amazing, surprising and delightful. Like a weekend checking out wineries on the North Fork. A vision book workshop in NYC. A raft of new hikes. My son featured as one of summer’s sexiest singles in Time Out NY (more on that later.) But it wasn’t until Jim and I spent a four-day weekend in Vermont that I finally felt the weight of not blogging. And—simultaneously—asked myself why it matters so much.
It was a wonderful trip, a classic Donna-and-Jim adventure that included a rainy drive along Route 100, a visit with Janet at Tao of Health, and two gorgeous days of hiking (and eating too much) in Killington. Seeing Janet and introducing Jim to the retreat center was a high point, for sure. And the reason we planned the trip in the first place. She’s selling lots of stuff in preparation for moving, and it turns out she was willing to let go of that happy little Buddha that came to symbolize my experiences there. So I went to pick him up—and Jim came to do the heavy lifting. The other high point (literally) was the hiking. Our trek up Killington Mountain was one for the books. We’d intended to take the gondola up and hike down, but the young guy selling tickets shamed us into the reverse order (he had me at, “It’s easier on the knees.”) The views were breathtaking, the climb strenuous—and I’d be lying if I said we didn’t curse that dude. More than once. But the hike to Deer Leap the day before was the one that got me thinking about the blogging thing. We crossed paths with Billy, a bearded through-hiker (that’s trail-speak for people hiking the length of the Appalachian Trail) who was either desperate for company or annoyingly long-winded. About an hour later we passed a guy who had also encountered Billy on the trail. “He seemed harmless enough,” the guy offered. When we alluded to the chattiness, he smiled and shrugged. “Well he did like to talk, but mostly about a whole lot of nothin’ real important.”
I rolled that phrase over and over in my mind, and by the time we got back to our car I’d come to this conclusion: That’s what blogging is. Going on and on about a whole lot of nothin’ real important.
Yet here I am. Climbing back in the saddle with renewed intention. Why? Because, like long-winded Billy, I just enjoy the process. Because it’s a creative medium that works for me sometimes, and sometimes not so much. I sure don’t want to feel obligated to do it—or guilty when I don’t. I just want the freedom to explore it. And I love knowing that people I care about are along for the ride.