I have always been one who wanders.
Since I graduated college in 2004, I’ve lived in two states and six cities.
Ever watch me play an open world RPG video game like Skyrim or World of Warcraft? It’s maddening. I stray from main quests like the plague, exploring the terrain for every nook, cranny, secret chest of gold, and Easter egg.
We’re coming up on our fourth-year anniversary in our house. I’ve already been dropping hints to Larry that I think it’s time to move. I’ve got the itch to pack up and wander again.
I have trouble staying in one place for very long.
It’s no surprise then that my wandering ways have followed me online. The last two weeks, I’ve built or redesigned four different websites. You’re reading one of them right now — hello and welcome. One website is awaiting final client approval — and the other two?
I’m like some kind of coding hummingbird, flitting from stylesheet to stylesheet in search of sweet web design nectar. My hunger is voracious, my appetite insatiable.
Hi. My name is Keiko and I’m a compulsive blog starter.
The move to this new blogging space came about from a perpetual identity crisis since the birth of my son last year. (Actually, I think it even started as early as 2012, when I first got pregnant.)
I entered the blogosphere an infertility blogger. I never set out to become some blogging and social media sensation. I just needed a space for emotional catharsis as I made sense of the derailment of my originally-envisioned family building future.
When I relaunched my blog as The Infertility Voice in early 2012, I had a very flimsy idea at the time of where I wanted my blog to go, what I wanted it to become. My personal goal behind it all at the time? I wanted to become the everywoman spokesperson for infertility.
(It’s a goal that I still have, but I’ve clarified it some: pinning down some of the vagaries and taking a more realistic approach about how I can actually make that happen.)
And then I got pregnant.
Let me be clear: it wasn’t a bad thing that happened to me by getting pregnant. But it did significantly alter the way people interacted and engaged with me online at my infertility blog. I struggled with survivor’s guilt, never really feeling comfortable in my own space.
So then I started #GoTeamZoll.
It was supposed to be the place where I wrote about my pregnancy and eventual parenting. The mommyblogger blog I had been dreaming about for years. And then I got hired to write for Disney Baby… and that eats up just about all the mental bandwidth I have to write about parenting.
So #GoTeamZoll mostly became a place to share the intimate details of Judah’s epic birth story and a landing page for out-of-town guest info for his first birthday party this past May. I hadn’t updated it since then.
I struggled with feeling relevant as an infertility blogger once Judah arrived. The survivor’s guilt ate away at me and my posts at The Infertility Voice became less frequent as I suddenly found myself desperately wanting to write but without a real place for my words to comfortably land.
Then, I thought it would be a GREAT idea to maintain a separate professional blog, writing about all things social media, design, and marketing. For all intents and purposes, I had this crazy complicated vision to maintain four separate blogs, each with their own niche.
With all of my writing and client commitments (because, let’s not forget: I work from home to take care of our son), I just couldn’t keep up anymore. Something had to change. As I pondered what to do, I had a lot of posts just sitting as half-written drafts, or one-off sentences rattling around in my brain, or on scraps of lost paper, or notes without context in my phone.
And then Robin Williams died.
I’m not the kind of person who seeks to capitalize off of a celebrity death for the sake of pageviews. But as someone who has struggled with depression for much of her life, his death struck a chord with me.
And so just like the reason I turned to blogging in the first place, I needed to write. I needed the catharsis.
I wrote a really good piece of writing, if I do say so myself — and I had nowhere to publish it. I pitched it to a few reliable content publishers like HuffPo and BlogHer, but it was too late: the blogger commentary cycle was already saturated within the first 24 hours and yet here I had this well-written blog post with no place to call home.
And so, Good Strong Words was born.
My professional website still has a blog, but it’s centered exclusively on showcasing client work. #GoTeamZoll is now an aggregate for my Instagram and Pinterest feeds since they’re pretty much all about Judah; visitors can pop on over for a quick peek at what’s new with Team Zoll family life. I’ve migrated all existing Team Zoll blog content into this new space just so they didn’t get lost to the wilds of the WordPress drafts folder.
The Infertility Voice remains a destination for online infertility empowerment, healing, and hope. As I live and breathe, I can never walk away from my first blog. I will be tailoring my editorial calendar to reflect a more realistic approach to keep it updated, current, relevant, and fresh. As an infertility survivor, I owe it to the community who carried me in my darkest moments to maintain and innovate at that space.
Good Strong Words was born out of a need — a compulsion — to write. About parenting. About politics and entertainment and what I had for dinner and what I think about life, Judaism, my cats, social justice, and the season premiere of Doctor Who.
So here we are.
My wanderer’s spirit will find plenty of places to roam and explore but for now, right here, at this very space —
I’m planting my flag and claiming my blogging home.