Wednesday, April 7, 2010

blogging about blogging.



so i've been thinking about this one for a while now.


it might turn into a vent.

it might turn into a rambling tangent. (i know, i know. this one is more likely.)

it might be offensive.

it might make you agree, or not agree.

i'm just forewarning you that there may be danger ahead...i don't really know since i'm just going to start typing and see what happens.

so anyway, read with caution. or just ignore this. either way, you've been warned.



i have heard several friends at one time or another say to me that they were no longer going to read blogs because they become depressing. that everyone (generally speaking here) posts about how WONDERFUL! life is. and how FABULOUS! their marriage is. and how BEAUTIFUL! their children are. how CRAFTY! they are. what great and marvelous CHEFS! they've turned into.

and that it's depressing enough to these friends that they want to swear-off blogging for a while.

and then the comments. ohhhhhh, the comments. why in the world are some people basing whether or not they feel fulfilled for the day on how many comments they've received???

why do comments affect a person's self-esteem? why do we let others' blogs affect our self-esteem?

here is how i feel about it, and about blogging in general.

i started our blog in 2007 when we were at a group home full of troubled teenagers and i felt that aside from ben and our co-workers, i had no outlet. i lay awake at night disturbed by whatever had gone on that day, and was trying desperately to fight away anxiety-induced nightmares that one of the kids had hopped in bed between us while holding a knife to kill us.

pretty, no?

so i started writing. and the more i wrote, the more i could see the humor in a humor-less situation. and i felt better. i began sleeping better and getting through some days with the single thought that i could blog about the trauma of the day later to relieve some of the stress. so i kept it up.

and as blogs began to catch on like wildfire i was so excited! to be able to keep in touch with some of my family and friends who were across the country from me pretty much saved me from losing my sanity while finishing out the year. i could look at pictures of family vacations, of new homes and new babies and keep tabs on a world outside of the chaos i was living.

sad to say, but it became my social life. i didn't have the opportunity to go out with friends or to go on dates with my husband during that year. there were times when i felt like i was a total loser because of how much i looked forward to blogging, but the more i think about it....the more grateful i am that at least i had it to take my mind off of things and to be able to vent and have others read about a little of what we were going through.

when we moved to arizona it was hot, i was pregnant and i didn't know anyone. i again found my outlet through writing and keeping in touch with friends through blogging.

most of my posts were reminders of how good things really were, and brought me out of my loneliness and the heat and put my life back in perspective.

and that is what it does for me now. puts things in perspective.

is my life perfect?

absolutely not. whose is?

everybody, EVERYBODY has something.

but is it a good life?

absolutely.

do i have a perfect marriage?

no. we have our good days, our bad days, our days spent annoyed with each other.

but do i have a husband who loves me, is committed to our family and who treats me well? do we work hard at taking care of our marriage?

definitely.

am i the perfect mother?

(good grief, is there such a thing?)

NO. i'm not even close! i question my mothering skills all of the time. being quite honest, i have absolutely no idea what i'm doing! i take it one day at a time, just like the majority of moms i know. i do the best that i can. i read, i pray, i feel guilty, i second-guess myself.

am i a completely secure and happy individual?

ummmm. did you read this post?

no. i struggle with the same things that the majority of women struggle with. self-image issues, inadequacy, feeling like i don't do enough and i should be doing more.

but.

like i mentioned before, when i blog, it seems to help with these things. it puts my life back into perspective. makes me realize that i have an enormous amount of blessings. and that i can choose to feel inadequate about the fact that i haven't done the dishes in 2 days or haven't cooked a meal in about 4 days, or i can focus on the sweet and funny things in life.

but just because i write about this stuff it doesn't mean my life is perfect.

i try to be realistic and also write about times when i'm frustrated and bummed, or my vacations aren't going very well, or i have had it up to there! with my kids, or i'm completely insecure.

i do think it's great to be honest and write about the hard times...but i also think that anyone who blogged about that stuff all of the time would probably not only depress anyone who was reading, but also eventually end up depressing themselves.

i think that we as women need to stop comparing ourselves to what is portrayed by others and instead realize that blogs are just that. they are what people want to portray about themselves and their life. it doesn't mean that life is actually all rainbows and bunnies and kids holding hands in the backseat. those are moments. and some choose to focus on those and that is awesome.

but my personal preference is to read blogs where people are realistic. they acknowledge that life can be tough and people go through hard things but that there are also beautiful way to look at hard situations.

i also love that through blogging we can find support. we can realize that we are not alone, that there are other people...sometimes strangers... who feel exactly the same way that we do. through others baring their souls about tragedy or trauma it causes me to pull out of myself and remember all that i have. to be a better mother, a better wife, a better person. to take better care of myself and of my life.

for me, this is a blog about my life. the good, the bad and the ugly. and hopefully the funny.

i turn these bad boys into books that i can look back at and remember the struggles as well as the joys. there are things that i feel are too personal to share to random strangers who happen upon this blog page so i am cautious about what i share here, and things that any family member...like my kids when they're grown...wouldn't be embarrassed to read, or have read about themselves.

so anyway.

um.

(this is the part where i just re-read what i've written and realize how random and all over the place this is but have no idea how to re-write it to be more coherent.)

in a nutshell:

let's be realistic! support each other! stop comparing ourselves! realize we all have problems! we all have blessings! you're great! i like you! let's be friends! forgive my ill-written tangent!

wow i'm a botard.

okay, that's all.

amen.



24 comments:

Lindsay Jane said...

I second that! Oh...and I heart and miss your face.

janine said...

I totally agree!!! I often think how our mothers made it through the years of young children without the support and outlet of blogging as corny as that sounds. Another hard truth is that many of the struggles that families face today are not ones that you can really blab about on the blog. Often, it's not your story to tell. Often, the issues are delicate and can hurt those close to you. It's not secret necessarily, just not your story to tell. And lets be honest, while we write about our wonderful lives, we're sitting at our computers make-up-less, unshowered and still in pj's at 3pm but that doesn't mean we're not grateful:) thanks for sharing your thoughts lynsi.

Fawn Becker said...

Can I get an Amen sista! I loved this...it's soooo true.

Except I did consider slitting my wrists because I only had one comment today.

lynsey said...

lol fawn! i love ya, that was the perfect comment!

and amen to that janine~as i was writing i was unshowered and in my work-out clothes trying to talk myself into getting on the treadmill instead of eating a chocolate fudge bar. oh, if people only really knew! ;)

and linds-i can't wait until we meet again. hopefully it will be me joining you on one of your fabulous cruises. it will be a reunion to remember!

Itsagirlsworld said...

No comment.

Andrea said...

that last comment was from me...ooops. So I just want to say...no comment

Andrea said...

You are a fine specimen

lynsey said...

andrea~ your privilege of commenting on my blog has now been revoked. :)

Andrea said...

I am so jealous of your perfect life...no really I loved the post. Way to keep it real. I think that's why I do love reading you blog...you do keep it real. I never feel like you are writing for "show." Keep up the great work

Andrea said...

Why...I am just sayin. You are a beautiful woman. why shouldn't i shout it to the world.

lynsey said...

and your privilege of commenting has now been re-instated. welcome back. i missed you.

Andrea said...

So So Fine. Such a mighty fine woman

lynsey said...

revoked.

Andrea said...

Lynsey smells like roses. He skin is like buttermilk. He hair...like sunflowers rustling in the wind. He eyes, oh her eyes, are like big sapphires floating through a river of love. Perfection.

lynsey said...

REVOKED. I REPEAT, REVOKED.

Andrea said...

Ooops in the last comment I wrote he on accident. Please substitute (wonderful perfect woman) for every instance of HE. Thanks
Andrea

K Harker said...

Can I just say AMEN! We women are too hard on ourselves and each other. Did you read my "comparison" post? We just need to stop comparing in all aspects of our lives.

I know you may think you sounded totally random but to me those were my exact thoughts (Accept for the botard part, I don't think you are a botard :), so I understand random, I guess.

For me that is exactly what blogging is, my out-let for the good and the some times not so good. But I try not to share the terribly bad because it's nobody's business :) I do filter what I blog about but not because I want people to think my life is perfect, there are just things I don't need to share with just anyone who comes across my blog.

I LOVE that I can keep in tough with friends I might not have, if it were not for their blogs and my own.

P.S. You and Andrea CRACK me up! I saw that you had 16 comments and then realized half were from Andrea ;)

Rachel H. said...

Lyns. I know, yet again, I will seem like a copycat in saying this, but this has been on my mind so much! How we each have our own way of blogging--and it has to be to each his own. Ya know? Clearly nobody is perfect.

I have felt super guilty because I think several people found my blog while I was at my craftiest point...and slowly, I have seen the numbers dwindle. I wish I never would have noticed...because now I feel very much like I have nothing to offer anyone. I write for me...yes. And I have to keep doing that--whether crafts and sewing are involved or not. It just stings a little bit to see and realize how things have shifted over the past year.

Why I wrote all this here? Who knows? :) But there ya have it. Thanks for this...you're a super fab blogger...and I always love coming back for more!

ohmylanta said...

WOW- With 18 comments and more on the way, I'd say you struck a chord! I guess I'm in a blogging zone because I don't really care what other people think of my blog. I'm like you, I blog for myself and for a record of our full lives. There's no doubt that a blog fills our various needs at any given time. I've gone through cycles of needing an outlet, needing friends and needing reminders of my good life.

Although, I'd be lying if I didn't admit that there have been times I've looked at a persons blog and thought "man..... they have it good". But, in the back of my mind, I know that life is life is life - for everyone! I will admit that more often than not, I steer myself in the direction of blogs like yours. Positive and Upbeat, But so REAL.

I know some gals feel upset when they don't get the response they want on their postings. But really? Life gets busy for mom's and not everyone is on top of the blogging world at the same time. I know I am shocked (and pleased) if I get 3 comments on a post. But who cares? I print these pages for my family journal and what else matters?

ohmylanta said...

HA HA - I just noticed that half the comments were you. PPFFFT! Hey..... I'm going to stick to my comment and say YOU STILL STRUCK A CHORD!

Rachel Chick said...

You are a botard. I can't believe you would ever write something so offensive to your humble readers!

LOL! I love you.

I have heard people express statements like that before. Things like saying reading blogs is depressing. -- Honestly, I've never quite figured out what the heck they are talking about. OF COURSE everyone isn't perfect. Such a funny conundrum to me. That by someone writing about the things that made them happy or the things that went well, it could "make" someone else feel bad. Sounds to me like a lot more people out there need to take responsibility for their own feelings.

There, now I've offended even more people than you! Hooray for me! :) -- Thanks for the post. I entirely agree. Thanks for being so awesome!!

Mike, Sarah, and Addison said...

I want to join the many comments above. I think blogging or anything else for that matter isn't done in order to be liked or compared to others. It is an oulet, journal, confessional, or even a creative endeavor.

Writing is so theraputic (sp?). Life is hard enough without comparing ourselves to those around us, especially when we only get their prepackaged and prepared blog entries that edit out all the behind-the-scenes issues. Enough of my soap box.

Clancy Pants said...

This is all news to me... I didn't realize people get depressed from reading blogs about people's happiness.

Well, that's not entirely true. I, myself, once read a blog obsessively for hours and in one sitting and after I stopped reading I started crying because I wondered why I couldn't be as awesome as the person who's blog I read. But then, I wrote myself a little poem thing on my blog and I felt better.

So, yeah, my blog is my therapist... or was, back when I used to write on it 100 years ago. Now it sits and waits for me to write and I neglect it and, instead, nuzzle my newborn babe.

Life is good.

And.

Your post is good.

And.

Botard is not a word...

And.

It made me laugh because you're so awesomely botarded.

Jules said...

hear hear!