Why do I blog?
This is a question I ask myself often. Almost daily. I think it is good to keep this internal dialogue going, to assess things on a regular basis, to figure out why it is I spend such a bulk of time here weaving words. Because, the thing is, I do not have tons of time. Like so many of you, I am constantly racing between morning and night, here and there, now and then. Moments become minutes and minutes become days and days pass on by and, well, life happens. It is important that I spend my time doing things that are important to me, that give me (or others) something meaningful.
So. I ask this question. As a way of keeping it real and keeping myself in line. Why do I blog? And, invariably, a string of answers come. True answers. I blog because it helps me excavate self in a world often dominated by other. I blog because it forces me to flex writing muscles and find my voice. I blog because it allows me to connect with people whom I otherwise would never meet.
These are good reasons, right? I think so. But they are not exhaustive. No. I blog for other reasons. Ones of which I was reminded yesterday.
I blog because I am insecure. Because I crave, and need, affirmation. Because feeling heard makes me feel less alone.
Honestly, these are not easy things to admit. They never are. Isn't it much more compelling to be cool and confident, and utterly self-reliant? Isn't it more ideal to be an adult, to be strong and sturdy, full of robust professional and personal integrity? Of course. I could pretend that I am this, that I have it all together, that I am the master of my universe, that all is consistently peachy.
But I am not this. And I don't. And I'm not. And it isn't.
Yesterday, I attended an amazing professional breakfast at the 21 Club (details to come) and then had a wonderful, if zany day with my girls. I saw a good friend and her daughter in the afternoon and then we ended the day with music class. By the time Husband and I finished dinner and I consumed my handful of candy corn, I was beat. Shredded with exhaustion. But I was also sad. A bit defeated.
And I couldn't figure out why. And then I did. I realized that I was sad that I only got two comments on my blog post yesterday, a post of which I was plenty proud. Now I know that two comments (three - I got another one after I went to bed) is something, more than something. Once upon a time, when I just started blogging, I went several months without a comment. So, two or three, is something. But I have gotten spoiled, used to getting more, to hearing more voices, to seeing a conversation unfold in my space. And yesterday it didn't really happen.
Which is fine. Which should be fine and often is. But yesterday, the doubts crept in, the insecurities alighted. I thought terrible things: I must have said something offensive, my writing has lost its punch, people no longer care. I also thought practical things: I do not comment much these days, so I can't expect it in return. Sometimes, people love something and don't say anything. This is life.
This morning, I woke up and continued to drag a bit. Questions swirled in my head. If this blogging gig is causing me anxiety, should I keep it up? There is enough stress in my life. And then I checked my email as I finagled my prenatal vitamin out of its container. And there was an email from a girl in Singapore.
I just stumbled upon your blog and I have to say that it's a very interesting read. I love your stories, and as silly as this may sound, you are inspiring people from all over the world (Singapore included).
I'm still in the search of my happy-ever-after; your post "fear of the known" really struck a chord in me. I'm in my mid-20s, middle of my career, in love with this man (in a relationship, but haven't said I love you yet) --- and I keep on feeling lost, despite my many adventures. Thanks for being a voice, an inspiration, a part of the roster of the strong women I would like to be like when I grow up.
This email made me smile. It washed away much of the angst I am feeling. It reminded me of something important: That I am doing this for reasons I don't even know. I am doing this to make people think, and feel, and realize that they are far from alone.
I am doing this to make myself think, and feel, and realize that I am far from alone.
So, this blog post? It's part catharsis, part confession. There are many wonderful things going on in my life, but I have my moments of sadness and confusion and self-doubt. I am a week shy of thirty-two, but in many ways I am still that little girl. Wanting to be noticed. And loved. And needed.
(Aren't we all this little girl?)
Thank you for listening. For being here even if you don't, or can't, leave a trail of words. For allowing me to be a metaphysical mess from time to time.
- Why do you blog?
- Do you need affirmation, praise, attention too? (Is this part of what it means to be human?)
- Have you ever felt down when you didn't receive a lot of blog comments (or the equivalent)?
- Do you think that life entails a certain degree of insecurity?
- Do you have a hard time being vulnerable, admitting your own insecurities? Do you feel better when you do?