When I started this blog, my twins were infants, my Sam was just out of diapers, and my now-two-year-old wasn’t even in our imaginations.
I was an adjunct instructor trying to figure out how to translate my nonprofit advocacy career into the classroom and into nonprofit Board rooms, while spending the bulk of my days at our local parks.
In other words, a lot has changed.
And much hasn’t.
My kids are older and, in many ways, need me more.
I am more thoroughly ensconced in academia, with all the tremendous rewards and considerable additional responsibilities that come with that (Case in point, I’m wrestling EPAS curriculum standard tables this evening. Those of you in social work education are shaking your heads right now.).
I am satisfied beyond measure with my advocacy consulting work, having grown significantly as a practitioner, in my theory base and my skill set, and still struggling alongside nonprofit advocates to figure out sustainable ways to drive at advocacy impact.
How I use this blog has changed, certainly: recently, it has been much less a transmission of what I have learned and more of a conversation with those in the broader field, including my own students, as I found a lot of success assigning blog comments in my advocacy practice course this spring. My reach has grown, and I still find the chance to have a substantive exchange about social change work the most rewarding aspect of this whole exercise.
I would say that I’m struck by how little has changed in the advocacy landscape over the past 5 years, and how much time I’m still spending talking about the very same issues.
Except I’m not really surprised at all. I am encouraged by how some concerns have percolated up a bit more–income inequality certainly rises to the top of that list–but others seem even more intractable than before (immigration reform, I’m looking at you).
And I’m still trying to fit in as much park time with these dark-haired wonders as I can.
I would be beyond honored and delighted if anyone is willing to share any reflections on their own last five years–what has changed, what hasn’t, and perhaps any small role that this online space has played. It has been a rather incredible journey, even through the haze of my sleep-deprivation.
Thank you for sharing it with me. It’s supposedly our ‘wooden anniversary’ together, but I say we just virtually pat each other on the back.