Why blog?

The question isn’t a rhetorical one. It’s one I’ve been asking myself a lot lately. I think bloggers (I still think of them as people other than me, but I guess I am a blogger by now right?) are prone to asking themselves this, especially if stats are low, or comments aren’t forthcoming, or your Tots100 score drops. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t bothered about such things. I am a bit. But probably nowhere near as much as I should be if I want to call myself a blogger.

No. For me the trigger for the question was something altogether different: the end of another blog. A blog I have read avidly (I think every single post). since a few months after Boo’s birth. A blog that has got me through some pretty tough times. A blog that has given me hope and a blog that has made me feel less alone even though I have never met its author and she lives many thousands of miles away.

The blog is Ain’t No Roller Coaster and if you haven’t read it, stop reading this post and go find it now and read it. From start to finish. You won’t regret it. It’s a blog by the wonderful tell-it-like-it-is Tatum and her family, including her youngest and amazingly cute son Owen who was born extremely prematurely, has a PVL diagnosis (like Boo) and a CP diagnosis too. Owen’s journey – the family’s journey – is not over, of course. But the blog is. The last post on ANRC was published on the 31 July. The blog had achieved what it set out to do, Tatum wrote. Time to stop.

And this started me thinking. Why do I blog? What is it that this blog sets out to do? And how will I know when I have done it? And is the goal of blogging ultimately not to need to blog any more?

Of course people blog for all sorts of reasons. Some blog as a career or to set up businesses. Some blog as a kind of journal keeping (this wasn’t my intention but even I find it useful to look back at the blog and see when things happened and how far we have or haven’t moved on since). But I don’t blog primarily for any of these reasons. I’m much too selfish. For the most part I think my blogging is motivated by the things I struggled to explain in this blog’s first ever post: to connect with people; to feel less alone; to find my voice. I blog, in other words, for therapy.

And I suppose if these are the main reasons I blog then maybe the goal of blogging is perhaps not to need to blog any more. Maybe the goal is to be self-sufficient to the extent that talking to friends and family and healthcare professionals is enough. To be at peace.

Somehow I can’t ever see that happening.

And partly I don’t want it to. My disquiet with the way things are – not that Boo was born early or has CP, you understand, I love him for all he is – but that life is made so hard for him by all that comes with these things – the bureaucracy, the appointments, the endless therapies, the prejudice and so forth ,keeps me going. The challenges he faces make me determined to tell other people about what life is like this side of the SEN track, to try in my own limited and flawed and probably hopelessly idealistic way to try to make a difference.

I know Ain’t No Roller Coaster did that. I don’t think this blog has. Maybe if and when it does I can stop blogging. Maybe. I don’t know.

To be honest, I don’t really know exactly why I blog. All I know is for some reason, and despite my dissatisfaction with Premmeditations (that I don’t post enough or advertise posts well enough, that I don’t connect with as many bloggers as I should, that the blog is always at the bottom of the to do list), I can’t stop.

So maybe why blog is the wrong question. Maybe I should be asking myself why can’t stop.

 

 

 

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6 thoughts on “Why blog?

  1. lookingforbluesky

    I can’t stop either.. Nor do I advertise my posts in the way that many recommend. Nor can I do funny. But I don’t care any more. I don’t think you should either – if your blog helps you as well as other people (which it definitely does) then just keep going as long as you enjoy it xx

    Reply
  2. aint3113

    Now, see, I need a blog that I can write a reply to this post! Since I no longer have one of my own, I’ll use your comment section instead. First, thank you for your review of ANRC. I really value your opinion and your place in the community of preemie bloggers. We really are similar. I’ve never considered myself a blogger. I refused to monetize it, or really even it market it. I’m a brand marketer by training and profession and I just couldn’t market my blog. As you say so well about your blog, ANRC also was never meant to be a business … it was always a form of therapy and this really strong need to share the whole story. Not just Owen’s story, but the rest of our stories…most specifically, my story as Owen’s mom and my story as the younger sibling of the 1970’s version of a micropreemie. ANRC was my therapy. In hindsight it was therapy of a very specific point…it was my personal exploration of my own vulnerability. You know, I’m kind naturally this “has it mostly together” “Extremely Type A” MBA type. I came from a typically dysfunctional family and was determined to not live like my “crazy” family. Instead, my life was grand and I was in control of everything…and then I had kids. The first was pretty scary and hard. Surprise labor at 34 weeks, fetal distress, emergency c-section, 10 days in a special care unit but it didn’t fully phase me. I was scared in the moment, but it didn’t alter who I was. I still worked at my job, I was still in control, I was still me – and damn it, I was smart and had my shit together! No Vulnerability. And then two years later I was admitted into the hospital at 24 weeks, five days later Owen was born. You know the story…NEC, CMV, PVL. The 34 years of my life that I worked up to being perfectly in control were gone. Being smart and having my shit together meant nothing. I was reduced to praying in the fetal position, begging God to please not let my child die. Goodbye control. Hello vulnerability. Type A and vulnerability don’t go well together. It took me two years of writing about what I thought was the issue…my son’s prematurity. But in the end, once I finally (and I mean F-I-N-A-L-L-Y) accepted my own vulnerability…mostly by hitting and then admitting that I was dealing with depression, I suddenly didn’t have anything left to say. And so, after writing the post in June and sitting on it for nearly two months, I stopped trying to find things to say. Because at the end of the day, I never identified as a blogger. I was just Tatum, trying to figure out some stuff and I was given the courage to do so in the most public way by the amazing readers and other bloggers who nurtured me as I went.

    I for one am glad that you’re writing. I love your honesty and your analytical approach. I have a feeling we will meet one day. I’m pretty sure I’ve told you before, I love England (admittedly it was sunny most of the time I was there) and I will be back. Traveling is a passion and I can’t wait to show my kids the world. Boo, Owen, you and me…there will be a playdate one day, I’m sure of it.

    Reply
  3. Momma P

    For me it’s a few different reasons: therapy, a way of recording keeping, a way to connect with others , and for something for the boys to look back on. I originally started the blogs as a place I wrote them letters.

    Reply
  4. womanunadorned

    I think I blog because it gives me a voice. It’s not exactly therapy for me, but I understand why it might be for other people. It’s the ability to do something positive and creative with a difficult experience.

    Reply
  5. Complicated Gorgeousness

    I love your blog so please don’t stop. I read too many blogs when I was in a “worse place” with Gabe and just when family life started to settle and things turned a corner the blogger would stop and I needed to know if they were okay, what happened next etc. I have no clue why I blog and think often it brings me more frustration than joy. So why do it? Because I hope it will help someone in a similar boat one day, that I think I need to record this very unique journey – the highs and the lows! I do hate how the scoring systems put pressure on people – the people in the top 250 work really, really hard and deserve their rankings built up over time. I’ve resigned to the fact I can’t commit that level of work to it – although the competitive head does raise its head every now and then. xx keep going lovely xx

    Reply
    1. mrboosmum Post author

      I will do. Thank you. I am really struggling to find the time to write and to plug posts etc at the moment and it doesn’t make me happy not doing it or not doing it so much. I think I need the blog. Just like I need you to continue yours because I love reading it!

      Reply

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