#AtoZChallenge Theme Reveal

AtoZ2019Theme

Yo, here I am on a Monday after a (yet again) too short weekend, and today is the #AtoZChallenge Theme Reveal!

I vowed that I would choose a theme early this year so that I could prep my entries, given that I’m doing two other writing challenges, and so that I could ensure that this year, my posts could both have focus (instead of being meandering messes) and be relevant to my blog.

So, that’s being said, my A-to-Z Theme is, My Life with ADHD.

I’ll blog a bit about neurodivergence in general, and share personal stories and opinions (and advice, for what it’s worth) about living my life with one.  I’m excited to dive a bit into this, and hopefully find/attract some other adults who are dealing with some of the same issues.

I’m looking forward to combing through the Master List for the Challenge later and maybe finding some new blogs to follow!  (I’m also hoping to both get some drafting done and get a few non-Challenge entries written soon).

Is everyone else psyche for April??

The Ever Evolving Nature of the Blog

top view of creative workspace with keyboard and coffee
Photo by Kaboompics .com on Pexels.com

AKA:  Jess can never make up her mind/is never satisfied/(to put a positive spin on it) is constantly learning and growing.

I’m back in the proper head space to be creative and work on the blog and creative projects again!  The last half of January was kind of a blasé month for me, mentally/creatively (not in a dire way, just sort of fatigued, hence the complete dearth of blog posts), but February has been a creative high point, and I’ve been thinking about this blog again.

I finally, finally moved all my OCtPoWriMo posts over to a separate blog – Rarely Tidy Writing – which is where I will host my contributions to all future writing challenges.  It’s accessible via my Navigation Menu, and if you are someone who followed me during one of the challenge months and are only here for creative writing, it might be a good idea to go and follow that blog either instead of or in addition to this one (I’d love for you to stick around!  But I know that it’s entirely possible that you followed me under the faulty assumption that I was a “writing blog,” and if my ADHD ramblings aren’t your cuppa, I understand and encourage you to check out Rarely Tidy Writing instead).

I’ve also been thinking of a previous post I made, talking about honing the focus of this blog somewhat, and reflecting on how that’s been going for me so far.  I’m enjoying, I think, that I am still able to talk about things that are important to me and that affect me personally while still having a lense through which I can focus my writing, but it remains important to me to keep a personal presence on this blog.  Over the last week, I’ve been considering this, and decided to try out combining two things I’d been mulling over for a long time: making #weeklycoffeetalk posts, and incorporating vlogs into my blog.  Since I plan on talking about my personal life during these weekend vlogs, my Friyay! posts will become more fully centered around media and products (i.e., things that you, as readers, can seek out and consume if they sound interesting or uplifting to you) instead of personal milestones or celebrations.

Anyway, that’s what’s what.  Hope you have all been well, and I’m looking forward to new projects on the horizon!

The New Year, Executive Functioning, and This Blog

black and white blackboard business chalkboard
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

I hope everyone had an amazing holiday!  (For those who don’t celebrate, I hope you still got some time off to relax and spend with loved ones).  After some touch-and-go moments the prior week where Bear seemed to be picking up every contagious stomach bug, cold, and infection known to man, he was feeling like himself by the 23rd an had a wonderful Christmas.  My family (in particular, my husband and my mom) also made a point on going crazy when it came to gifts for me, so I’m coming out of this holiday season with a ton of crafting supplies (so much paint!) and a lot of inspiration.

Speaking of inspiration, it’s been a goal of this blog since the beginning to be a tool to help with recovering my sense of inspiration and creativity.  As someone with a neurodivergence, time management and organization are notoriously hard, as is the “simple” act of sustained attention on certain things – even things I ostensibly want to do.  Keeping a blog introduced me to some great creative challenges that had enough external structure and gave me enough positive, affirming feedback that I was marginally more creatively productive than I have been in the last several years, which is great.

However, that self-same neurodivergence meant that, going into this, the purpose of this blog was incredibly vaguely defined.  I’ve said before that I don’t love niche blogging – I like to talk about whatever comes into my head – and that remains true.  However, I’ve noticed that a number of my followers come here during my challenge months, when I’m posting poetry or creative writing, even though the rest of the year I’m not a creative writing blog.  I started to wonder if maybe posting fiction and poetry on this blog wasn’t the best idea.

When I started this blog, my whole “thing” was, I didn’t want to feel boxed in as a “niche” blogger.  I didn’t want to feel like I could only post poetry, or only write about children’s literature, or only post recipes.  I kind of just wanted a space to talk about life and share my interests.  I still feel that way; I just also feel like, without being boxed in too rigidly, I should step back and think about perspective: who am I?  I can write about my life, sure, but through what lens am I experiencing my life?

At the beginning, when I chose the name of this blog (Rarely Tidy Ramblings), I loved it because it encompassed the messiness that was the inside of my mind due to my ED et. al.,, and because it came from a wonderful quote (of ambiguous attribution) framing a disorganized mind as the hallmark of the creative individual.  I thought, initially, that this could give me leeway to post just about whatever I damn well pleased.

But really, what Rarely Tidy Ramblings should be about is my life through the perspective given to me by being neurodivergent.  Parenting with ADHD.  Working with neurodivergent kids as someone likewise ND.  Planning, organization, list-making, goal-setting.  Trying to be creative when your brain works against you.

Does that mean I can’t post my son’s weekly book rec from the library?  No.  Does that mean I can’t photo dump when we take a fun family trip?  Of course not.  Hell, even the niche-est of niche bloggers have chatty and personal posts, sometimes.  It just means I can’t forget that I’m writing about my life from a perspective colored by something particular, and I should use that as a way to focus my writing, and as the impetus to produce new writing.

It also means no more posting creative writing.  I can talk about the process, about the pitfalls and difficulties and successes, but I can’t post the finished work (here.  I’m considering opening and linking a sideblog for those interested that would be accessible via the navigation menu).

This is not an overhaul, or a revamp – just a refocusing.  I’ve gathered enough followers through endeavors like Inktober and NaNoWriMo and OctPoWriMo that I thought I’d perform a courtesy and explicitly let you all know that those instances were the deviation rather than the norm.

Relatedly, I’m currently working my way through The Adult Executive Functioning Workbook, which has made me really think about organization, focus, and goal-setting, and in part is what spurred me to really think about what I’m using this space for and if I could use it better, with more focus and purpose (the answer was “yes”).

I doubt I’ll be back before the New Year (I might!  I have something I’d love to post either prior to or very, very early in the new year, but I make no promises), so I will wish a happy, safe New Year to my followers, and I look forward to being more active and productive on this blog (and overal!) in 2019