I’m about to use the world’s most snobbish word in relation to my blog: curate. I say snobbish, because the word curate is often found in contemporary society outside of the realm of museums. It is tangled up in a mish-mash of other words that conveys more of what isn’t present than what is. Rather than meaning a well-researched and cohesive presentation of items or ideas by experts, we find the verb curate around social media, make-up monthly subscriptions, and artisan cheeses. Hello, pretension.
I’ve felt great pride in Fig and Thistle having authenticity. There’s a feeling of purpose in knowing that when I write about the tough stuff (mental health, motherhood, professional woes, marriage) folks find inspiration, empathy, and companionship through their own rough patches. I sleep easy at night know that I’m not pretending my life is rosy golden all the time. I don’t edit out the messiness. There is no striving for mommy/body/marriage/mental health perfection.
But, I’m tired.
It isn’t really that my readership has grown slightly. I’m perfectly okay with a reader in California – a stranger – reading about breakdowns and struggles. Weirdly enough, I’m more concerned with the people who know me and my family knowing so much about my personal struggles. My boss, student-employees, co-workers, friends of friends, people who only know me as a parent in the school system, etc… read my blog. They know my marriage issues, the self-harm, the eating disorder, the mental illness… they know all of it. And in my day to day transactions I have to pretend my heart isn’t ripped out of me and exposed. I feel vulnerable.
Then there is the ever present question of where to draw the line? Once I blogged about marriage issues that got better, then way worse, and then better again. Do I update every time? Do I stay vague? Leave my husband completely out of everything? I do the same thing with weight loss: dieting, then not dieting, then watching my food for health, then eating disorder issues, then fat acceptance, then dieting. To be authentic I feel like I need to talk about all of it at each change in feeling to maintain “keeping it real.”
All of it comes down to this: I’m human. My plans, ideas, feelings, and perspectives change, shift, and sometimes grow. I’ve found that the balls-to-the-wall authenticity I crave belongs in my journal and in creative writing, which I don’t share on the blog as a post. I am writing quite a bit and my hope is that some day I’ll share some of the things I’ve written, but now is not the right time and a blog is not the correct place.
So, what do I mean by “curating” Fig and Thistle?
For starters, I’m not deleting any past posts. This decision reflects from here on out. I’m going to be talking about the same topics, more or less, with a few exceptions. I’m no longer discussing my marriage. Sure, I’ll post date updates and Sam will certainly figure into some posts, but I’m not discusses marriage issues. There will be less posts featuring rants, complaining, parenting woes, etc… (not that there was really much of that before). Most significantly, I’m going to step back from talking about Bipolar 2 disorder, self-harm, and disordered eating.
What I’ve written above represents what I’m leaving out, but I plan on enriching this blog in other ways. More writing about books, clothes, coffee, the stuff that makes me tick.
Think of it this way. Instead of spilling my guts like you all are some sort of collective therapist, I’m going to chat like we’re friends meeting up for coffee. Maybe not besties, but pretty darn close to best friends. Food, music, books, general day- to-day chit chat. We’ll keep it light. We’ll keep it positive.