43 and 14

Where does the time go? I started this blog when I was 29 years old, had already suffered a miscarriage, and was looking for a way to connect with people–my family and friends in particular–but really anyone who wanted to read.

Now, fourteen years later, this space goes largely forgotten in my daily life. As many bloggers who have bowed out of the blogasphere before me have said, the kids get older and their stories seem more theirs…more private. Less open to sharing on a platform like this.

It’s definitely happened with the Sluiter kids. Eddie is a middle school kid now. There is SO much I wish I could write about–mostly wonderful with a side of typical middle school kid annoyances–but it would be so embarrassing for him to have his friends’ parents or people from church know those things about him. Charlie has gone through a ton. I could start an entire blog devoted to just one part of who he is, but I won’t. That part of him is his. And anything I do share, I share with permission. And Alice–who is very much her own person–is still #3. I have written all the things that are shareable about having a kid her age.

And I am 43. I turned 43 almost three months ago and wrote nothing about it, which gives the false impression that there is nothing to say about it.

There is PLENTY to say about being 43–middle-aged.

I feel my middle-agedness these days. I feel the age gap between me and my students, grad school peers, and the new teachers in my building.

I have come to realize that I relate better to my professors than the other grad students in my classes.

I am finding that my oldest child who used to think I was the beginning, middle, and end to all that is cool, finds my claim of ultimate awesomeness a bit “sus” these days. (Thank goodness Alice still looks to me for tips in coolness.)

When I read Young Adult Literature, I relate to the parents and other adults.

I do not bounce back from a night of too much fun like I used to.

Random aches and pains make me ask, “did I sleep weird? or is that just be being over 40?”

It’s not all negative things, though. Oddly, I feel like younger adults listen to me as a veteran mom, teacher, scholar. Which is…a different feeling. It feels good, but it also feels like a huge responsibility to get things right.

The biggest thing that I have noticed, however, is how I spend my time. As I said, I used to pour lots of time into this blog. I wrote about all the baby things and toddler things and having two little ones things. I did sponsored posts and wrote about my postpartum depression and anxiety and OCD. I supported small businesses and wrote poetry. This space has held so much of our life from my point of view.

And now there are cobwebs because honestly, it is a chore to log in. There are so many plug-ins that always need updating. There is just so. much. content. that it lags when uploading photos or opening a draft or even just logging in. In fact, I have had to log out and log back in a couple times because the “autosave” keeps giving me an error. I just don’t have the time anymore to fight with it.

I don’t have this blog to be a money maker. It used to bring in a few bucks or free product here and there, but it’s never been supplemental income.

More than anything this space is where I keep my memories.

And now, as approach…ok, as I am now IN…my middle age adulthoodness…I just don’t have the time.

Yes, I want to write and share photos. Like look! I had my lazy eye fixed and don’t need glasses or prescription sunglasses anymore and it’s so fun! Plus my hair has grown back enough to actually get shaped into a real style, so I have a CUTE bob going right now that I LOVE!

But I don’t want to fight having this huge blog anymore.

So I think I am closing up my WordPress blog. I’m going to download it so I can make a book…or books…out of it. I’m going to go back to writing on a free platform, I think. Unless someone can tell me how to keep this space, but downsize? I’ll keep the url because why not? But I don’t want to pay for hosting anymore when I blog like 5 times (if I am lucky) per year.

I’ll probably delete my Sluiter Nation FB page because I don’t maintain it.

I just want a space to write and I don’t feel like this (waves hand at blog) is that anymore.

I am 43. Sluiter Nation is almost 14. And it feels like the time for a bit of a change.

About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.

Comments

  1. I’m right there with you. It’s so different when the kids are older and the connections we were seeking back in the day are now filled via Facebook and Instagram. I’ve been going back to delete old posts that are honestly so stupid. How many times did I call myself a crackwhore? And whyyy?? lol I don’t want my kids to find all those old posts and I think it lightens the website a bit. I do miss the old days of blogging though. We were fun!

    • Yes! We were so fun! And the word “crackwhore” was so popular! Why did we think that was so funny? I think I might go back and delete useless, dumb posts too. I just deleted a TON of plugins that are just not necessary anymore and it’s already quicker. Maybe I will stay in this spot 🙂

  2. I soooooo get this. I actually switched from WordPress to Squarespace because the upkeep is so much easier but have I blogged – no. I’m 42 and have many of the same feelings. But I’ve been having to urge to write, to reconnect, to somehow make it feel a bit more like the old blogging days. I’m thinking about starting a newsletter for a more intimate crowd, for people who truly want to be there without having to worry about sponsors and advertising and keeping up with the youngsters and the latest social media trends.
    I love reading your writing so I do hope that you will do it in a place where I can find you but either way, you do you and enjoy!!!

    • I just deleted a TON of plugins that really aren’t useful to me anymore and things are already quite a bit speedier. I may stay here after all 🙂 I’m glad you still enjoy my writing. I’ve got a lot to write about, just no time to fight with a blog that doesn’t want to load and behave. Maybe I can fix that!

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