Is a title I have shamelessly borrowed from Ruth Ridgeway’s blog post with the exact same name (thank you Ruth xoxo). Ruth’ s writings are worth reading, so take a small break and have a look. The thing is that making space for what I want, is precisely what I have NOT been doing and for a far too long time. Back in 2007 I think it was, I got a sparkle of an idea for a book. Words got scribbled down on whatever paper was handy, genius plots were formed sitting on the outdoor loo (sorry for being so graphic..) at our summer cottage and I even mustered up enough grit to sit down and start writing on a Word document. Years later, full of that famous Finnish ‘Sisu’, I joined not only one, but three creative writing classes. Some how along the road those ‘well-meaning yeses’ that Ruth is writing about became more and more. Not ‘yeses’ for writing on my book, my big fancy bombastic epic novel, but yeses to other people´s asks and obligations. My day job started to be more intense with a lot of inspiring and intellectually demanding but also energy-consuming projects, which did not leave room for very much intellectual endeavors on my free time.
I have been the good girl all my life, doing what other good girls do, stepping in and helping, supporting when I feel there is no one else who can take on the task. And mind you, it has not been completely selfless on my part. When digging a bit deeper, it feels very rewarding to be able to help friends, family and whoever might be in need. And when those you help are grateful it feels even better. As a little girl I wanted to save the world, be a missionary and help starving children – this was during the horrible crisis in Biafra and it felt incomprehensible that there were people on this planet who did not get enough food and had to die because of that. It still does by the way… As a slightly bigger girl I honesty do not know what I want anymore. The world seems to be even more in need of saving and my part in supporting that, feels so intimidatingly inadequate.
When taking all kinds of personality test I always score high on team work, helper, nurturer (even if I do not see myself as especially nurturing). The worst thing anyone can accuse me of is being selfish, which has led me to do whatever it takes for that to not happen. And let’s just say that coming from a family where everyone has always put other people ‘s needs before his or her own, has very much strengthen that helper’s muscle. This is not necessarily a bad characteristic – on the contrary, but taken to it´s extreme it can be exhausting.
But, and here comes the big but, at some point saying yes to other people’s need and agendas can become so draining that you also have to be selfish in order to survive. And that famous space – yes you do need space, emotional as well as physical space to create something new, to fill up your cup and to be able to fully support others again.
I am not entirely sure about me writing my book anymore, it might be that I do not have the stamina needed for that, but I do have other ideas and dreams that I want to fulfill. One that has also been itching and should have been due a long time ago, is to create a website a.k.a. my own hub on the interwebs. A dream that I have had for almost as long a time as my book idea. I have reserved the domain name and as my holiday has now started, there is actually no excuses anymore for just creating the darn thing. Which is why I am instead sitting here enjoying my green tea at one of my summer sanctuaries in Turku 😀
During the last couple of years I have filled notebook after notebook with outlines and structures for my internet hub, listened to countless webinars on everything from traffic generating to plugins and yet I have nothing to show for. Now I have a feeling that if I do not create my website this summer, it will never be created and the train will forever have left the station. Woot! Woot! Last question remains, should I choose WordPress or Squarespace? Yes, these are the kind of issues that make me stay on the station and let the train pass by… It is considerably easier to say yes to other people ‘s requests than to decide on how to go further with your own projects….
But being me (the mad rabbit) I have naturally signed up for a summer blogging challenge and have already opened up a fresh new document on my Google Drive solely for this purpose. The purpose of creating my own website, for real this time.