Did you know there is a right and and a wrong way to throw a fish back into the water?
Or that you should reel in your fish with a certain hand?
I didn’t. But apparently there is, because my darling husband was just telling me so.
But maybe I should explain how this conversation came about.
This morning I have been feeling a little bit flat. I’ve been looking at blogging and what I want to achieve with it, and also what my original goals were. When I started at the beginning of the year, it was an avenue to promote my book, when I get it published. My ‘target audience’ would be Christian mums, and I would write inspired words of wisdom that would encourage all who read them to be better people.
Turns out not a lot of Christian mums read blogs.
In fact to be fair, no one read my blog because I was too scared to tell anyone about it. It was only through Tim mentioning it to the girls at work (who aren’t Christians) that anyone found out about it, and gave me the self esteem boost to put myself out there.
Here I am five months later with a Facebook page, and account, twitter, and at last count 36 followers. Modest beginnings, but I’m grateful no less.
But with my ‘success’ (a handful of people liking and reading my blog), comes a shift in my objectives. Since my ‘target’ audience is not my actual audience, how does that change what I post. Do I become one of those preachy blogs, intent on saving your souls? Or do I ignore my faith and write about random, daily happenings?
Or do I go somewhere in between?
I can’t ignore my faith; it is so much a part of who I am, that it is naturally going to be reflected in my writing. Christianity colours the way I view the world, and how I raise my children. I believe it makes me a better person. I can not help but write about it from time to time.
But part of my belief in God also says that he is a gentleman; he does not push himself or force himself on anyone who does not want him. As a result, neither will I.
I recently engaged in a debate over baby sleeping techniques. Short story is, I read a blog, I got fired up, wrote my own reply, and then posted it. Since then I have had quite a lot of comments from people disagreeing with my views (some published some not), and in many ways I feel like I have been attacked personally.
My goal in my post was not to highlight why one parenting philosophy is better than another, or why people should do things my way, but rather to point out that it is not ok to judge another human being. We are all different, and we all do things differently. Our children need us as parents, to do what we consider best for them, because our children need us to be authentic to ourselves. For some this mean attachment parenting, for others it means sticking to a routine. Are their good points in both practices? Yes. Are their flaws and legalism as well? Of course. But if the parents are acting in the child’s best interests, and with love, does it really matter?
I have a view on parenting, that obviously I think is best, and that’s why I do it. If you agree with me, that’s great we have something in common. If you don’t that’s ok too. I am not going to judge you or unfriend you, or think less of you in any way. That’s not up to me.
It hurts me, that other people can not extend the same grace, and I guess that is why I am feeling a bit down this morning. Down and misunderstood.
Enter husband with his fishing show analogies.
Apparently Paul, the presenter on I Fish gets all sorts of negative feedback about the way he returns fish to the water, or the way he winds them in. (Amongst other things.) According to Tim, some people are so outraged by his fishing technique, that they won’t watch his show. Tim’s view is ‘who really cares?’ If you’re focusing on left or right hand, you’re missing the point of the show; seeing new places to fish, and trialling new equipment. Besides if you’re an avid fisherman like my husband, you don’t care because you’re preoccupied by the fact that people are catching fish!
So I guess what I am trying to say is this: I’m not judging anyone, nor am I trying to convert anyone. I’m just trying to be real and authentic, and gracious to everyone. I like to think I am a nice person. I like to think I can inspire and help, and maybe occasionally provide a laugh.
So I guess that’s my new goal. To be authentic and carry hope. I think that’s all I can really do.