Stay Curious.
Dig Deeper.
Nurture What Matters.
Be BoldHeart.
Enjoy Your Life.

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The BoldHeartMama desires to enjoy living out the choices that she’s made for herself and for her family. She is a relentless learner: curious, inquisitive, and open to the possibilities of her life and of the human condition. She understands that there isn't one right way—she asks questions that dig deeper to make sense of it all and to find her own path.

She pays attention to and nurtures whatever it is she really cares about, letting go of the rest (for now) knowing she can't do and be everything all at once. She embraces her imperfections in favor of "good enough"—her imperfect self, her imperfect home, her imperfect mothering, her imperfect desires—and she never stops evolving as a woman and mother. She is a BoldHeart, authentic and true to herself.

The BoldHeartMama knows there is only this one life and she's all in. She is present and engaged and making things happen. Her intuition is her guide. She seeks to be inspired and relies on her creativity and her resourcefulness to solve the big and little challenges that she and her family face together as they navigate their relationships and their world.

The BoldHeartMama is willing to take calculated risks to make her biggest dreams come true. She is living out her BoldHeart in the moment, making small moves and taking little steps that add up, and she's cultivating a good life for herself and her family in the process. Read More!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Moving forward from BlogHer '12, the end of marbles rolling?

For the first time in my life I meticulously planned out my wardrobe and carefully packed my carry-on so as not to forget a single component, as opposed to dumping my entire dresser into two suitcases. I was determined not to check my bag and like the fashionista that I am not, I created outfits that with a few easy swaps transitioned from daytime panel sessions and workshops to late night NYC swag and dance parties.

I prepared the household for my absence with printed-out daily routines, and a menu plan with meal options and snack suggestions. I stocked the kitchen with food, a few more processed and convenient this week, to make it easier for everyone.

I stayed up late the night before to finish packing, which meant that Wednesday morning was quiet and peaceful and we were able to go about our routine as normal until about 8:30am when the four of us drove together to the airport. I tried to be upbeat, and to not show that my catastrophic thinking was already giving me doubts about leaving them. I kissed the boys on their sweet little cheeks, and nuzzled their noses for a few extra seconds, turning before my eyes gave me away. A hug for Andy and I was off.

I waited in the terminal thinking of the boys embarking on their first solo flight as a threesome. I knew they'd be fine, hanging on tight to each other, and that it would be good for them.

All morning I felt calm and reflective. This was my first trip alone since becoming pregnant with Roscoe in 2008, and my first time leaving the boys since they were born. On the brink in other ways too, I had been hugely anticipating Blogher '12 for the better part of the year, curious about how my writing might be affected by what I would encounter and learn, and in what direction my blog might be pulled as a result. I was excited to finally meet in person the online community that I've been contributing to for the last four years, thrilled to be traveling to an unfamiliar city, and craving inspiration.

I arrived home late last night, my body and my brain exhausted.


Time spent in the big apple was liberating for me. Introverted, public speaking often leaves me frozen with anxiety. In a sea of thousands of women, I felt warmth, welcomed, right at home, still, and thoughtful, and eager to adopt the wisdom of women who have come before me in this journey of sharing. I felt confident, even though I occupy such a tiny footprint in the sand. I belonged there too.

It struck me that, in stark contrast to real life, there were no mommy wars, or politicking, no competition, or judgement, or separation. It was a collision of women from across the world with stories to tell. Five thousand powerful women with influential platforms, in our own right, connected by our truths and bound by our words. Writers at heart, honing our craft, connecting our voices and knowing that we are not alone.

Beyond networking and social marketing, the technical aspects of monetization and SEO, even the opportunity to hear from Martha stewart and Katie Couric, I came to BlogHer for clarity about the future of Marbles Rolling in content and style.

What I took home was this: The clearest path to finding my voice as a writer is to have the courage to be vulnerable in my writing and to take greater risks in my storytelling. It seems obvious now, the necessity to tell and retell our stories in order to find what is true and to own it without hesitation, or fear of how that truth may affect others.

I heard from many women over the weekend and their awareness resonated deeply:
"The way we spend our day is the way we spend our lives." 
"Writing [my blog] is a map back to myself."
"The more I write, the clearer I become in my outline of who I am."

A need for acceptance. A need to be heard. A need to hear myself.
I need all of these things.

I am very seriously considering taking this blog down to start fresh in a new space with a nom de plume. I am cautious about my decision either way, and so I may just sit on it for a while. But I have stories and feelings and a perspective on events in my life and of this world, that I haven't felt comfortable expressing here. I've always been honest here, but my words are tempered.

I think it may be time to push the boundaries and confront what currently constrains my growth as a writer, as a mother, and as a woman with a voice carrying stories that need to be told.
For my own good.

I turn 30 in nine days. I recently quit my job. I'm in transition and this blog may have to go with me.

7 comments :

  1. Nooooooooo! I love it just as it is. (End temper tantrum.) :)

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  2. Jacqueline, I will respect whatever decision you make. I can imagine how a friends and family blog could be restrictive as not to hurt anyone's feelings or cause friction...ultimately "the way we spend the day is the way we spend our lives"...time is valuable so LIVE (write about) your priorities...I may not blog but I journal/write for clarity and focused purpose. When I do, I am not reserved. Obviously no one is reading! In an e-mail I sent you when our friendship was first evolving I said that I enjoyed talking with you and in so many words said how lovely it was to learn from each other and still respect our differences. Agree to disagree...if you were ever to blog about something that mattered to you but others couldn't tolerate... your real friends will love you and respect your written voice whether they agreed with you or not. Cheers to the future and the coin toss! The continuation or the completion!

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  3. I'm assuming it's the audience of the blog - i.e. family and friends? Or a professional thing? I'm curious to hear more about the hesitation.

    I have purposefully, since the beginning, discouraged my mom (my dad has yet to reply to an email I've sent him, so I'm not worried about him taking the time to check out my blog) from reading. I didn't even tell her about it for a long time but a cousin-in-law mentioned it several times to my aunt (my mom's sister) so the cat was out of the bag. I sent an email with the link and with a warning. My mom graciously said that she would not go there unless I directed her, she wanted to keep it my space. She has kept to that (that I know of) except when I was in labor with B and was anxious for news (of course I called her/informed her before the blog readers!). Anyway, at one point my husband kept wanting to talk about my blog to his parents because he is proud of me. IT caused some argument between us because I DID NOT want them coming near it. Not for the reason that I wanted to write posts about them (oh, but i would love to vent on the blog!! about all family, in fact!), but because I don't want to share some of that with them. They know me a certain way...it just crossed a boundary for me. Would leave me uncomfortable. And I keep it kind of discreet on FB. I mean, I occasionally link to a post but that's few and far between. All these things have left me with enough mental freedom to write what I want to write. Having a open husband helps a lot, too, although he finally learned not to share the link with co-workers (DUH!). I do shy away from certain topics - parents, in-laws, other family stuff - things that involve others outside of me. I check for husband's "okay" on anything he might feel weird about. And how do I get that other stuff out of my head? THERAPY! Otherwise, my blog is enormously therapeutic. I do find clarification in my life after writing, especially when it's the type of posts that dig a little deeper and maybe take longer - a few sessions - to complete.

    Anyway! Just my thoughts :)

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  4. Heidi: you are the best :) I will never worry about you or any of my real-life friends. I know you'll support me either way. I will share with many of you where I go next, if I decide to pursue that route ;P

    Laura: I get your whole comment. And agree with it all. I have too much to say here, but will find time to write you in email...can't wait to discuss more!

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  5. I can't wait to see the path that you choose; I love your blog as is but I know that you are going to WOW me even more (if that is possible) when/if you decide to just let it ALL OUT!!

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  6. First and foremost, Happy belated Birthday! Turning 30 is a big transition within itself. I hope you had a wonderful celebration and are looking forward to the next decade of your life.

    It looks like you ended up having a great time at BlogHer. When we met (on Thursday) you seemed stressed. Perhaps you were just tired. I hope you were able to have fun, experience camaraderie, yet get the alone time you needed.

    Both when you spoke, and within this blog post, you express the strong need to exorcise past pain. Go with that intuition. Get it out through your writing. Why not have two blogs? Also, don't forget the Web site I mentioned: 750words.com. It may help you.

    Whatever it is you choose, I hope you find peace of mind.

    And if you do choose to start a new blog, let me know. I'd love to keep up with how you are doing.

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  7. Hi Jacqueline -- we met at BlogHer at one of the writing tables, though my mind is so garbled from the conference that I can't remember which one. But I'm finally here, reading your wonderful blog. I, too, am feeling like my blog is in transition. It started as a humorous look on being thrust into being a SAHM, and now that I'm going back to work part-time and I've been doing it for a while, I'm feeling the need to dig a little deeper. It's scary. Especially as I have some old college friends who read my blog. How much am I willing to reveal? I suppose if you feel you are being true to yourself by doing deeper, as Wendy said, it would probably be helpful to follow that intuition. I hope to do the same!

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