Seven whole years

Do you know what today is? It’s my bloggerversaryyyy! (*Cue Babyface singing in the background, if we can’t book him cue marching band and confetti….and dancing.)

Woot woot!

Today April 13th 2021 makes it seven whole calendar years since I have been a blogger and since culturally, historically numerically, biblically and psychologically the number 7 signifies completeness, it is clearly something to celebrate.

In 2014 when I decided to take the leap and enter the world of online blogging, I did so with a huge dose of trepidation (ah did frighten bad!). I wanted to write a different kind of ‘mom blog’ than the usual template focused sharing tips, tricks or hacks to becoming a ‘better mom’. I wanted to provide a view that is uniquely Trinidadian and even more uniquely me. Would people ‘get’ my style of writing? Would I write content that people would be willing to engage with? Would I get enough of a following to engage with people in the first place or would I just be writing for writing sake? How much of myself would I be willing to share publicly? All of these questions I grappled with at the start but at the end of the day I just decided to start. MANY times (plentyyyyyy times!) I fell off the wagon simply because I didn’t care much for my voice and it seemed like it didn’t resonate. I didn’t really struggle for content as I had lots to express, just never the time (or the will) to sit and get it out and as such my posting used to be sporadic AF. Covid changed that for me.

Last year during the drollness of virtual teaching, I put a lot of focus on what will bring me joy as I navigated the effects of the pandemic on my sanity.  I decided I needed to get back to one of the things I love with the intention of writing more and writing consistently. I got a logo created, revamped my blog page for this purpose and strengthened my social media connections to share myself with a wider audience. With another dose of trepidation, I created an Instagram profile to help me get my content out there and honestly, to engage with more people to escape the feeling that I was writing into a void. I’m glad I swallowed and took that leap because it really took it up a notch for me in terms of feeling more comfortable and more confident in sharing myself and what I write.

So what have I learnt over these seven years of blogging? A lot, but these four stick out:

1. Write what you want to write and not what you think people would want you to write. Don’t lose your voice because it is what inspired you to write in the first place. It is the thing that sets you apart and makes you unique. I have had many moments of “should I say that?” and “I hope people get that” but no matter how much times I backspace, it always ends up being expressed as I want it.

2. Make blogging part of your routine. I used to think that blogging was something I did on the side like a hobby I got into when I was bored. While it may have started off like that, I now consider it as something that is a part of me, so I am this, that, the third and a blogger. Blogging is something that I do just like educating the nation’s teenaged humans or feeding the gremlinz three times a day (and ensuring that there are multiple snacks because apparently a thrice a day feeding is never enough).

3. Don’t force the inspiration to write. Yes, you will not feel like writing and yes that is ok but there are other ways that you may be inspired to show up. Instagram really helped with that ( and more recently Tik Tok which is another strange beast by itself that is fun to wrangle). Social media does help with consistency though as sometimes inspiration for a post will hit me in the bathroom based on some nugget of discussion had earlier.

4.  Don’t be too obsessed with the numbers. It is perfectly natural to check your stats and insights to see your engagement, as a matter of fact it is very important. The trouble lies when you monitor the bars every day, three times a day and the length of the bars drives your emotional state.  There is a saying that goes “watch food doh cook good” which essentially means to do like that Disney princess who unleashes herself in a frozen tundra…..

Sing it

I was there in the earlies, thank God I wised up and I have been enjoying blogging for what it is.

So Happy 7-year Anniversary to me! I’m so excited for the plans to make Trini Mom in the Middle into the juggernaut I want it to be so keep dem fingers crossed! I hope today sets off years and years of future blogging from my neck of the woods (and if you’re still not sure, I’m over here). Thanks to all of those who supported me, who advised me and who inspired me.

The inspiration

Thank you for being here, I really appreciate your presence, your shares and your comments when you can. If you haven’t as yet, firstly please feel freeeee to scroll down and click follow below this post and secondly check out my social media handles below, it’s freeeee and you get nothing short of seventy times seven more years of my supreme eloquence, greatness and of course, email notifications when ah post😁

Here I am on

Facebook: www.facebook.com/trinimomindmiddle

Instagram: instagram.com/trinimom_indmiddle

Tik Tok: https://vm.tiktok.com/ZMeuJeoeH/

Cheers and Blessings!

TMIDM

It is only Tuesday…

This wasn’t my next planned post but when the inspiration hits….

Now have you ever seen this viral moment?

#diddystaredown

Picture me as Diddy and #gremlin3 as Elijah Connor (complete with the naughty grin) in the ultimate staredown this morning over the word RAT. Watch it again.

Of the short list of three-letter phonic words that good old Nelson set up for us to go through today, RAT was the last word and I was determined that we finish with a flourish. It was already set up like a root canal appointment going through the list in the first place because he had guava jam for breakfast (a grave error, the buzz was growing) and I low-key needed him to just pronounce and say the damn word so I could tick off my own productivity list and move on with my breakfast. My Hong Wing, Crix and zaboca was waiting.

Not my images but name a more satisfying trio….I’ll wait

I prayed silently for the return of his teacher who was unfortunately called away from virtual reading this morning. I prayed even more fervently for COVID-19 to ROLL TF BACK because ah cyah take this no more and he needs his little playmates to keep him company so they could all be crazy four year olds together. Selling dreams…..

Now there is an opinion held by many that parents think that teachers are babysitters and they (the parents) are willing to shove their offspring into the teachers’ hands and take off like a rotating shift. I’m a parent and a teacher and I am here to admit that this is partially true. I say partially because as a parent I know what I drill into the gremlinz in order to make the teacher’s shift easier and I recognize and appreciate its necessity (take these chirren please! #ahbeg). At the same time, I also am fully aware of when it is my turn to pick up shift and sadly, A LOT of parents are ignorant of this and if they do know, they simply do not care.

#gremlin2 and I butted heads extensively when she was doing the SEA exam last year simply because she was more amenable to her teacher’s style. Now there is nothing wrong with that, I’m fully aware of the dynamic. Even when she was very much younger my words couldn’t hold a flame to what “Miss say!” At the end of the day, Miss will reach her where I could not. With #gremlin3 it’s a little of the same except instead of protesting, at times he just looks at me like I talking madness and switches the conversation to bullfrogs and giraffes (the latter has “looooooong necks” in case you didn’t know, just passing on the knowledge because it is something I am reminded of by him every…glorious…day).

Now if there are purists reading this wondering why I didn’t tie in RAT to his love for animals, I tried, and I was swiftly met with a look of disdain and the reply, “Mummy, rats don’t live in the jungle”. So there you go. My petty gland raised and I was about to respond with the factoid that giraffes ACTUALLY live in savannahs but I’m not one to crush a four year old’s dreams today and besides it would have been #diddystaredown all over again. (See above).

Sigh, carry on smartly. It is only Tuesday. When school opening? Stupid Covid. Steups. Sigh.

Blessings

TMIDM

The Process.

At the beginning of 2020 I had scribbled some thoughts to myself while reflecting on greatness and why it is a thing difficult for me to discover. While understanding fully well that comparison is the thief of joy, I looked back at my dreams and aspirations that I held when I was younger only to see my life veer into a path that beheld none of these dreams simply because they seemed not a part of my destiny. No matter how hard I fought, I faced wall after wall after wall (after wall, after blasted wall) trying to force my passion which led to depression and eventually a strongly-worded, tearful monologue to the Most High. Since that season, I have made myself content to live what I consider to be a very, normal, average life in comparison to my lofty dreams. It is a life which I love very much yet here’s what I had written:

I eventually got used to it, to the point where I sat and I counselled myself on why it was ok to run my average race.

“There is nothing wrong with being average, love yourself and embrace your wins even if others think that they are miniscule in the larger comparison of things.”

Loving myself for who I am has made me comfortable. Has it made me afraid of my potential though? For more than who I am? Because I have struggled to accept me for who I am rather than the ‘me’ who keeps wondering and comparing herself with who she could be….

What are you afraid of girl?

TMIDM

Ok so maybe some fallacies therein but it was a mini stream of consciousness so you get the gist. Basically I have conditioned myself to love myself as I am and to see greatness and appreciate where I’m at and not prove to dream and aspire to greater. Now, this isn’t something that it a new-found thought process. I have been accepting my averageness since I was a child. Though it may be comfortable state for me to stay safely on this side of the thin line, I’m also fully well aware that it is a defense mechanism to deal with emotional middle child trauma. I don’t need a couch and a one-hour session to identify that. But here is the funny thing: the gratitude that I feel for my average life which does contain many successes which centre mostly on my ‘superwoman’ domestic abilities, also leaves room for me to wonder if I am short-changing myself just because I’m happy and comfortable. Maybe it’s a manifestation of a need for more self-confidence. Maybe I’m afraid of a challenge. (I won’t even begin to express how this affects my parenting. That’s a dissertation for a next time.)

The day before I go back out to work in January is always a day for reflection. Today I stared at my new 2021 planner which prompted ‘Yearly Goals’ and my mind drew a blank. I mean I know what I want for my family and even for myself in terms of my own self-care, health and spiritual needs but actual SMART goals? I could come up with nothing and it largely has to do with the rocking ride of disappointment and unfulfilled goals that was 2020, as well as the aforementioned ideation. I’m flat out intimidated to identify what would launch me from this very comfy plateau I think I’m on.

Mood: Meh

OK, so they say admittance is the first step. Now I know I made a really big one by re-launching my blog and getting more of ‘me’ out there on the socials and hopefully that leads me into new awakenings. (Actually, I’m counting on it because I’m having more fun than I thought and I’m connecting with a host of awesome folks. A goal? Perhaps). New awakenings usually come from dark, uncomfortable situations, like a seed in the ground and my trainer used to keep ringing out my ears to ‘Trust the Process’ while getting comfortable with being uncomfortable. That’s only when the growth happens.

So for 2021 I’m about to get really uncomfortable as I believe it is time for ME to grow some more. I would be lying if I said was ready but I hope can you accompany me on my journey to self-discovery this year and living life a little less average.

Blessings

TMIDM