This is our 50th post together! I hope you have still been benefiting from the content. Looking back, this blog has been an adventure. Sometimes, I feel like I have grown through the blog as much as I expect you have. Thank you for going along on this journey over the last year. For the post this week, I wanted to share this experience with you of reflecting back on the last year of the Rock Solid Fatherhood blog. Bare with me, this post will be more “free-formed” than is typical. I wanted to give myself the freedom to share whatever came to mind as I discuss the experience of writing my first, and Rock Solid Fatherhood’s first, 50 posts.
To begin, I wanted to share with you the experience of writing my first blog. It didn’t take very long before I felt that I had nothing left to share. Somehow the ideas (from me and from others) kept coming. Fatherhood comes with many challenges. The hardest part of writing a blog on the topic is finding meaningful, relatable, and helpful things to say for each issue. I also wanted to balance my tone so that each post wasn’t too instructional or too personal, too positive or too negative, too simple or too complex. It takes more time to write even a few paragraphs than one might think. Thankfully, I have had a very supportive team to help encourage me and keep me on track. For anyone that might ever consider writing a blog, I would highly recommend having a few people read over your work and provide constructive criticism. Something else that I have learned from writing this kind of blog is that it is easy to feel like you are repeating concepts or thoughts. I constantly have to go back and make sure I didn’t already cover an issue or share an illustration. That’s the hard stuff about writing this blog.
What I have enjoyed about writing the blog is the opportunity to slow down and contemplate subjects that are easy to fly right over in our busy daily lives. Writing the posts has caused me to have to look closely and critically at what I believe, what is healthy, and what is common among fathers concerning each topic. Another good part about writing the blog is the ability to use some of my creativity and love for story-telling. In fact, I often feel that I have to pull back from turning the blog into storytime. It is much easier and more fulfilling for me to write about being a dad than writing about how to be a dad (if that makes sense). I also appreciate the comments that I receive from readers of the blog. There haven’t been very many, but each response is like a warm meal after a long day. Thank you so much to those of you that continue to follow and interact with the posts. It means a lot!
Another part of writing the blog has been going through the spam comments that show up each week. So far, there have been 359. I find them mildly entertaining, but they can also feel discouraging when I begin to wonder if the blog is having any impact. I figured I would share some of the comments for your amusement.
These are spam comments that I have gotten over the past year that have cracked me up or left me dumbfounded:
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- And, my absolute favorite… “Professional and kind staff, the only trustworthy mercedes benz service in Croatia.”
Rock Solid Fatherhood is the most trustworthy Mercedes Benz service in Croatia. How true, how true.
One question that I asked myself was if I would change anything that was written in previous posts. I don’t think so. This is not because I believe that I have written perfect masterpieces. In fact, far from it. Instead, I like that you, as the reader, get to see my personal growth along the way. You can analyze my discrepancies in thinking and pick away at my weaknesses as a human. I try to have this picture of you and I sitting at a table together and hashing out some important father stuff together. Just as I am growing as a father, I want to be an encouragement to other men that are trying to grow as well. Hopefully, that has always come across in my writing. I don’t know what the next 50 posts will look like, and I’m not sure if I will be able to get there. But, I wanted to stop and say that I appreciate the journey and I appreciate you coming along with me.
I’m not sure what I would like to hear from you this week, but feel free to share any of your own thoughts in the comments section.
Brian Faust is the Fatherhood Program Coordinator of Rock Solid Fatherhood in Warsaw, IN. He is the husband of the world’s best wife and father of three beautiful girls. He has nearly a decade of mentorship and mental health experience. Brian has a Bachelor’s in Psychology and a Masters in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from Grace College. It is his desire to come alongside men of all walks of life as they embrace their role as partner and father with rock solid strength.