Posted on | February 19, 2013 | 26 Comments
This blog used to be my safe haven. It was my therapy at the end of a long day or during a long nap time. It was a place I could go and vent or share good news. A place where other mamas could relate to me, and I could feel not so alone while my husband was deployed or while I’d spent another long day as a stay-at-home mom. I would come with a jumbled mind, furiously type out my thoughts, close the laptop, and walk away feeling refreshed and lighter. The feedback I got was all positive. Other mamas, looking for a bit of honesty, were happy to see they weren’t alone.
Y’all have celebrated the birth of two of my babies, the return of a husband from two deployments, the purchase of our first home, and almost five anniversaries with me. Many of you have become close friends. Some of you have shared coffee and laughter and even tears with me. Some of you have sent emails that changed my view on the idea of “internet friends.” I have learned that you don’t always have to meet another woman in person to know she’s a sister at heart.
But as this blog has grown and changed, I’ve been met with resistance. It started with a few anonymous comments that were meaner that anything anyone had ever said to me in person. I felt like I’d been slapped in the face, and I had no idea who did it. When I shared my hurt with other bloggers, they would sadly nod their heads and say, “That’s just part of the deal, babe.” So I moved on with life. But then I got some mean emails. And then it seemed like any post that wasn’t complete fluff was received with something negative, something stinging. So I began pulling back.
I found myself questioning every word I wrote. Writing and re-writing posts. Hesitating. Finally hitting post, and then fretting for hours every time my inbox with ding with a new comment. I stopped commenting back as much because I always feared being misunderstood or not conveying the right tone. I became less and less personal and more and more obtuse, and this blog has become a place that doesn’t really feel like “me.”
If I share too much, I’m potentially scarring my children for life. If I only talk about the puppies and rainbows in our life, I’m being “unrealistic, fake, and a liar.” If I complain about any thing that bothers me, I’m not being grateful for what I have or enjoying my life and my children. And how is any of that fair? In the last six months, I have deleted and blocked comments from more people than I care to admit. Not just little snide comments, but flat-out meanness. And I’m over it. I’m over seeing people write things about me that could not be more untrue, and I’m sick of feeling overly sensitive to comments that are well-meaning but don’t sit well with me because I’ve already been knocked down by someone else. And yes, I realize that as a blogger, “We put it all out there,” and we’re expected to take what we get in return. I disagree with that sentimate. Just because I choose to share a part of my life with the public doesn’t mean I deserve to be raked over the coals every time someone thinks differently. Maybe I should grow tougher skin, but I’ve always been sensitive, and I kind of like that aspect of myself.
At the end of the day, I am just a woman. I am a mama doing the best damn job she can, and sometimes I falter. I’m being a wife to a husband whom I adore, but sometimes, we trip along the way. I’m trying to help lead an FRG, write a blog, volunteer, be a friend to women who are great friends for me. And it’s all great, but sometimes a ball drops, and lately it’s been the ball right here. If anything has to fall off the radar, I guess I’d rather it be this blog than anything in my personal life. But truthfully?
I miss it here. I miss being unabashedly honest and open. I miss rushing into your hypothetical arms with tears in my eyes and being able to emotionally drain everything here. I miss being able to scream with joy when something awesome happens with no fear of being accused of bragging.
I’m not sure where that leaves me. Please know, this post is not directed at anyone in general. Those who have left nasty comments have been blocked. I have replied through email to any comments that stung, so you could have already heard from me. This is just a general “speaking out loud” of sorts as to where to go from here. Do I keep it fluff and bare and write only when I feel guilty because it’s been too long since I took it to the blog? Do I get back to my roots and learn to find the love in writing again? I don’t really have an answer. This blog has been a piece of my identity for so long that I have a hard time imagining myself with out it, but I don’t like what it is on a day-to-day basis now.
I guess it’s just something that will take a little time to work itself out. But to all of you who have been here and been supportive, to all of you who have made kind, constructive, supportive comments (even when they don’t align with my point of view), all of you who have agreed to disagree, and pulled me up when I’m down, and been happy with me when good things in life happen, to all of you….Thank you. You have brought more joy into my life than I could even let you know.