June 20, 2013

Where I've Been

The short answer: psychotherapy.

The slightly wordier answer: I've just been trying to live my life. To really be present. After I wrote that post on the anniversary of Mom's passing, I just wasn't really sure what to do with this blog anymore. Do I want it to be about my adorable daughters and all the wonderful ways we spend our time? Do I want this to be a place where I can write down my thoughts and process emotions? What about sharing recipes or bragging about my DIY accomplishments? Yikes - do I consider sharing thoughts about spirituality and the route my inner life is taking?

See, I keep things pretty compartmentalized in my mind and I was starting to go crazy trying to figure out what needed to go where all the time. So I just took a break from blogging. I took a break from Facebook (which is ongoing and I love it, except that I never know about babies or birthdays, but that's really all I miss), and I tried to just live for a while. What would it be like to live life without sharing it online?

I started writing longhand everyday and found it difficult and refreshing.

I worked through The Artist's Way program and it is seriously life changing.

I gave myself more time to fiddle around with stuff. Watercolor here, birdwatching there, walks in the woods just for fun.

It's been great. And I didn't let myself feel any guilt about this blog. I know, I know, it takes a special kind of person to feel guilt and pressure over a blog which they have created and which has no monetary value or deadline or anything. I am that special person - able to feel guilty about just about anything. Like I was saying, I didn't let myself feel any guilt about blogging. I waited until I really wanted to share things again. And now it's happened. I think I have things to share. I think I'm learning better how to give myself a break and really love this life I'm living. And I miss writing here, so I'm back.

Here's to less compartmentalizing. If I want to write about suicide and depression and other mental health issues, I will. If I want to just share photos of my adorable daughters and say nothing about heavy topics, I will. If I want to show you guys how amazing I am getting at embroidery and tell you about my latest bird sightings or just dump things out of my head so my thoughts will be quiet, I'll do that too.

This blog is a record of my life. And life can be messy and unorganized. I'm trying to be OK with that. Here's to the freedom to write (or not to write) and the joy that can be found when we just slow down enough to be.

I love these photos of the girls getting in touch with nature during our family reunion in Oklahoma.
They are such good role models for me.


  1. Life is messy, isn't it? That's what makes it so beautiful. And everything you share on your blog from daily life to your vulnerable moments makes your blog incredibly unique and beautiful. There are few with your courage to share and the eloquence to do so. I have no doubt that your blog as been an inspiration to many, and I am one of them.

    Now, it is time to get off the computer and live some life!

  2. Thanks, Mariko! That means a lot to me. I'm so glad we can connect here.

  3. Here, here! Something I love about your blog is that it reflects your uniqueness and how multidimensional you are. It is hard to share the messy vulnerable parts on life, but it means a lot to me and others when you do. On the flip side it is good to remember that life has wonderful moments too. Thanks for inspiring me and always encouraging me to really live.

    P.S. The first and last pictures are real treasures.

  4. P.P.S. Could you tell me more about the Artist's Way program?

  5. Ha, I just spent an hour trying to form a post wherein I quit blogging and now I'm catching up on my Google Reader, that I haven't opened in weeks, to find this amazing post! You articulated this so well. Loved the compartmentalizing bit especially. So happy you are living life and not worried about the interwebs. Intrigued by the artist's way, it's what inspired the creator of 750words.com. As always, the photos are perfect. Miss you, friend.

  6. You make me so proud to be your "Aunt" It is awesome to hear your innermost thoughts just come out so freely, something I am trying to work on.... As for Ellie, I can't believe how long her hair is getting! Wren is as sweet as ever, Joe, what is that design on your shirt? I can't tell if it has hearts or spades on it. We are coming to Seattle July 25th and staying with my friends in Sammamish but plan on hanging out with you PLENTY during that time!!! Can't wait. Love and miss you, Hardie family!!!!

  7. So glad the blog is back. I love hearing what you are doing. Love the pictures of couse.I agree with Katie the first and last pics are really awesome.Miss you guys so much.

  8. I'm learning so much from Manu about how to live in the moment. It is amazing how much more enjoyable it is when I let myself do it! Love your cute girls and can't wait to see you!

  9. I love that you're writing again. I told Mike last night that although I've only known you for two weeks, it feels like we're old friends. And I like it. Im so glad we get to explore Seattle together this summer! Xx

  10. Glad you're back! I love anything you write. I also love pictures of dirty girls, because that's my world too. Keep writing-- whatever you want!