Just now, when I reached my dashboard here on Blogger, and then clicked that little "pencil" button to post something I felt very sad.
I love this blog. I am feeling like this is the end of an era. 7 years of writing. 7 years of so much that has happened to our family. So much good, some just "meh" and some kind of bad. But mostly good. This blog has been an incredible source of figuring out who I am. I go through our archives from time to time and just read away. I see how much our family has evolved and how much my, still not that great, writing has evolved. In 2005 and 2006, I wanted to use this site as a way to store photos of our "Baby James" and put a few captions with the photos. Then I remembered that I can fit a few more words in there. This was right around the time that I discovered SO many other bloggers out there. Bloggers who had been doing this whole writing thing for WAY longer than me. And way better I have to add. I think of Amalah, Joy Unexpected, and artistmotherteacher and that's just naming a few. Those are just the bloggers who are still out there. I've met Bloggers who've ended their blogs and I've stayed in contact with them through Facebook, email, and Instagram. Moms who had children right around the time that James and/or Natalie was born. It's been that long! I followed a blog about a little boy who was born right around the time James was. For about a few months later, I noticed the updates ended for a while. Then I found out that the mom had died in a tragic car accident. I mean... it's hard to not feel touched by these families and their photos and words. Especially when you follow them and hope to see great things happen for them. You think "why wouldn't great things happen..it's supposed to be great!"
One of the other crushing things I noticed with blogging was how the tone and readership changes drastically right when you post about having your second child born with a severe heart condition. My only wish is that someone could have told me ahead of time that that would have happened. I totally get it. Truly, I do. Not many people want to read about sad shit. They don't want to see a family go through this too real of an ordeal because it makes them sad. I've done it! Without realizing how slightly shitty that is, I've done that before Natalie was born. But we've kept a following going of people who have stuck with us through everything! Everything! And I mean everything. From the birth of James, to the discussions about his love of eating avocados, to him walking, to me posting a birth story about his little sister. Then these same people have followed our journey as a "heart family" and to this very day, they are still sticking around. THAT'S the shit that I love and continue to focus on. We've even gained readers because of Natalie's special heart!
I dreamed of being the next attendee at BlogHer. I've dreamed of making money from our family blog. I've dreamed of finally meeting some of my favorite bloggers and people going "OH you're from that Bent blog!!" I know..that's so cheesy and stupid. But those are mah dreams.
I've had rants that I couldn't believe I posted. I've cried while writing a few of these posts. I've even made myself laugh if you can believe that! I never had those dreams become a reality but I can always look back at this blog and feel grateful. Not only did a special group of people follow my family, but this blog has been my scrapbook for the past 7 years. If you took a look at James and Natalie's closet and dug into their big bin of baby books and scrapbooks you would be horrified. This blog has been the best source of documenting their first 5 and 6 years of beautiful life.
I am in awe that I have 2 beautiful children and a husband. I started this blog on September 26th, 2005. During these past 7 years I have successfully given birth because I seriously thought that I would be a human incapable of handling myself during something so intense. And I did it TWICE! I married my best friend in the summer of 2006 and boy oh boy we have had some ridiculous piles of shit thrown at us. Phew. But we keep knocking those balls of shit out of the park. We've gotten hit in the faces a few times with some curve balls but no permanent bruises. Lessons? yes. Scars? nope.
We've moved 5 times during the course of this blog. We've lived in 2 states. We've even included so many photos from an actual CAMERA before our days now of Instagram abuse. I do love my "1977 filter".
Please don't forget to bookmark "The Queen of Hearts". This blog is entirely Natalie. It was my way of having our own little corner on the web that shouted CHDS!!! because we need more of those in my opinion. The blog isn't just about CHDs, it's also about hope and inspiration. I will be sure to throw a ton of sarcasm and eye rolls in there too, so don't worry! But all in all it's about a truly remarkable young lady who I am very lucky to joke with and call her "The Queen". I'll update whenever I can..but mostly when I'm not competing with a 6 year old and his Shaun the Sheep game.
So this is goodbye... but it's a huge "hello" to more good times and shitty times. I just won't be documenting those here. I think that I can only post about boogers, farts, and crazy stuff the kids say in more separate areas of the interwebs. Maybe I shouldn't have been keeping it in one spot? Because just like the good and shitty times, the boogers and farts are bountiful!!