Getting back to blogging has been something I’ve thought about doing for a while but I kept telling myself I had nothing to say, nobody to say it to and no time to say it. Then I realised that these are just stories I tell myself and I can do whatever the hell I like! One of the main reasons I’ve decided to start writing again is because I like the feeling of getting my thoughts out of my head and having someone validate them or challenge them or chime in with their own thoughts/feelings/ideas. I know that those are the reason I log in and out of Instagram, because I use it as a place to download my thoughts ( and share a shitload of photos of food that nobody really needs to see) and then I get uncomfortable with the amount of time I spend there or how easily I reach for it when I’m bored, lonely, need an escape. So then I dug a little deeper to try to figure out why I need that and over the weekend the answer came.
As a child and into my teenage years I kept a diary, writing little daily tidbits and then as the years went on I used to to poor my thoughts out onto the pages. It was helpful, cathartic. When I had my first baby (two weeks before my 21st birthday) I tried to keep writing but I’d lost my time, my headspace and in a way I’d replaced my journal with my mothers group. These women were my touch stones for the first 7 years of motherhood. We caught up all the time, in person and over the phone ( this was the early 2000’s, phone calls were still a thing!). We shared more than just kids born within the same month, we shared our whole lives.
Then we moved across the country. I lost my tribe. I tried so hard to find new friends when I first moved here but man, the woman were CLIQUEY! I had my best friend from high school and that was it. Poor Amy, she was my solitary friend but she never complained about having to shoulder my constant word vomit, pretty sure she’s used to as we’ve been friends since we were in year 8! Then for the first time since becoming a mum I had a full time job. I’d worked casual jobs since having kids so was lucky to still have time to see my friends. Working 40 hours a week does not leave much time for making new friendships. Eventually I became friends with the women I worked with but they didn’t have kids and were much younger than me so it wasn’t really the same. Then I made some friends thanks to the school P&C- yay me!- friends with kids and similar interests and I felt better. Much better!
Fast forward a few years and I switched jobs. Suddenly I wasn’t interacting with people as much and that meant less chatting which meant less opportunity to download. Then I had some more kids so was home a lot on my own ( husband used to do 4:1 FIFO so not much adult interaction was happening), I was getting NO sleep and I think I kinda lost my mind a little. Seriously, I look back now and think I may have been a little depressed and A LOT tired. I cried a lot. I lost myself but also found myself too. And this is where Instagram became my lifeline. I felt like I was connecting with people, sharing with people but it was through my phone and not in my kitchen or the local park like it was all those years ago. Oh, I also started a blog for a little while. How the hell I managed to write while existing on 3 hours sleep and solo parenting 4 kids between the ages of 14 years and 4 months I’ll never know.
You see, I’m a people person. I LOVE people. I love talking with people, listening to people, laughing with people. People are important to me. I don’t need to be surrounded by lots of people but I really need a core group friends and I’m lucky, I’ve got 5 super great friends. I love them all so much but 2 live across the other side of the country and the rest of us are so busy working, mum-ing, wife-ing while also trying to do normal life stuff we just don’t get to see each other very often at all. So online becomes the place we go to make sure we know what’s happening. It’s where I go when I need to vent or share or just talk shit. I need a place for all the stuff that dances around my head during the day and at 2.43am.
So here I am with a shiny new blog. I did think about going back to She Who Rambles but I just didn’t feel like that was the right place. Times have changed. And maybe I have too. Plus, I bloody love starting a new project! Why The Back Fence? Because as teenagers Amy and I used to call each other out to our back fence to talk. It’s where me and my neighbour Brooke chat as I hang the washing out and she waters her garden as our kids play. It’s where, in our first home, our elderly neighbours would stick their heads over to say hi, pass a bottle of home made ginger beer and pass me gardenias from their bush. I want this to become the place I can share stuff with people who are like me, who need connection and conversation but life has gotten FULL so finding the time to have those real life chats doesn’t always happen as often as we’d like.
I don’t know what this place will be, probably just an extension of the stuff I share on Instagram with more words. I like words more than pictures so don’t come looking for shiny photos OK? Just come if you like words, this is going to be the place for words