Happy Blogiversary to SoftThistle Life!
Eight years ago today I wrote my first post here on SoftThistle Life. It’s the second blog I’d started and has been my sounding board ever since.
I initially started it to have a place that the boys’ dad and family wouldn’t snoop on us after we split up. I needed to feel like I could be myself while writing and at that point – we’d only split up two months previously – I didn’t have that.
So it started out as a place that wasn’t so much about the kids – not a mummy blog, but a me blog. That didn’t last of course, as like every mama I couldn’t not talk about my kids for long.
Zack was all of four years old, and Max was about to turn two. We’d just moved to a new area to be closer to my parents, I was a single mama, and nursery wasn’t going to start for Zack till after the October break, so I’ll admit I was a bit lonely.
That’s where the blogging community came in – you’ve always got someone to talk to when you’re on twitter and the like, am I right? The middle of the night wakings of Max were many and I knew I wasn’t alone. What a feeling!
As the years went on, SoftThistle Life documented Max’s autism diagnosis, sleepless nights and behavioural issues, Zack’s ability to have the patience of a saint when it came to his little brother (and his exhausted mama!) and so much more.
I was lucky enough to be invited to the MAD Blog Awards as a finalist both in 2011 and in 2013 – both amazing events and while I didn’t win, they were definitely up there as some of the best nights of my life. I got to meet people face to face that I’d been speaking to for years, and it was so refreshing to be around like-minded people who *got* me!
The Blogging Break
Thanks to an amazing outreach program in our area, and a wonderful sleep counsellor who I have often referred to as our guardian angel, Max’s sleep issues got better – life finally got a bit easier!
Max started school and as the times he was in till increased I was able to use that time to rest and recuperate after many years of no sleep and the stress of raising children without anyone to tag team them with, and on top of that a child with special needs.
Then I took some time out from blogging and such – I needed some time to have a real break from expecting so much from myself. I’ve blogged here and there over the last three years as I could never completely break off from it – you’ve all been the most amazing support over the years. More than you’ll ever know.
Where we’re at
Max will be ten on Wednesday. Zack is twelve now and started high school in August! I’m 33 and am in my second year of my psychology degree with The Open University. I’ve become self employed and am busier than ever. You’d think I’m mad to come back to blogging now, right?
Here’s the thing though. Blogging has always given me the ability to get my thoughts in order. I can write out what’s going on in my head and not only get it in some sort of order, I get the accountability of you all reading this to keep me going.
So basically I’m saying THANK YOU. Thank you for being here through it all, for keeping in touch even when I wasn’t blogging, for reaching out when I wasn’t coping and cheering us all on when things started looking up.
It’s been a hell of an interesting eight years, and I can’t wait to see what the next eight have in store!