Ok so I'm sure every blogger at some point in their blogging journey experiences blogging envy. You know where your insecurities make you stalk other blogs' content, designs, etc and try to convince you that your own blog sucks the big wad? That what you've got in your little blogging corner of the digital world ain't cutting the mustard, so to speak.
At least I can be honest and say it's happened to me, especially this summer as I stepped further into the "Mommy Blogging" universe. And by stepping further I mean reading some of the really famous ones and those on the "Top 50" "Top 100" lists those parenting websites generate to
feed your insecurities to tell you who's worth checking out. Even when it comes to those that are PPD related, man, there are some INCREDIBLE mamas out there who are rocking it and kicking PPD & it's stigma in the arse on the daily with every word they type. I admire these women. I've even envied them for fleeting moments. And I've sat back, looked at my blog and wondered: where do you fit? and when are you just going to bite the bullet and get a design that identifies your "brand"?
See how I just used the word "brand?" That's the social media consultant in me speaking. The business side of me that's been doing blogs for other clients, who understands all the SM mumbo jumbo (ie SEO, Metrics,Branding Identity, etc) and has been using those critical eyes to view my little space here.
I think what the question I've been asking myself is: where do I belong in the blogosphere? What's my niche? Why do I do this? What's the purpose? I don't have a great design. Or ads. I'm not syndicated on BlogHer. I've never been to a blogging conference. I don't chat with the 'who's who' of the Mommy Blogosphere on Twitter. I'm a mama who wasn't diagnosed with or in treatment for PPD til my youngest was a month shy of 12 months. And I'm a mama who now is realizing that while I may have had PPD, I was experiencing symptoms of BPD2 & anxiety before I was pregnant. I'm also a Christian but I don't always talk about my faith-if anything I talk about how much I struggle & muddle my way through it, so I'm definitely not one of those Christian bloggers who has amazing insight & can build you up with truths revealed to them. I'm working on rebuilding my self-esteem and my body image sucks-I care about those issues and how they impact myself & other women but I don't want to just blog about that....and sometimes I feel like my blog meanders, kind of up & down depending on my mood which might be too much or too confusing for people.
But you know what I realized? Why I stopped envy and my blogging identity crisis dead in it's tracks? What made me take off the consultant glasses I was viewing myself, my writing with? I'm not the labeling type. Categories & boxes are not what I fit myself easily into. I never have. I'm not stereotypical. I love diversity & variety too much. My closest friends have always said I'm like Baskin Robbins-only with more flavors. I don't like being told I have to be this way or be like this person. I never dress in season, shoot while I like trends, I never even know what to buy-I just wear what I like. One day that may be a pair of chucks with a funked out graphic tee, the next it could be a pair of ankle boots from Aldos with a stilletto heel. It just depends on my mood.
I'm nerdy. I'm a goofball. I'm a music junkie. I'm eccentric. I'm a Jesus chick. I'm up and other days I'm down. I'm a mama. I'm only 28 but I've been through abuse in every shape & form and have seen some things growing up I wouldn't wish on anyone. I'm trying to recover from a self-esteem that has always struggled to stay on the healthy side and I'm just now wrapping my head around & getting treatment for something I have to live with for the rest of my life. I'm the chick who never fit in and yet I still at 28 find myself trying to wiggle my way into networks or circles or groups of "friends"...this latest case being blogging.
I'm a myriad of alot of things, as am most people. And while I understand from a "branding" perspective I should focus on maybe just one thing-dude, are you kidding me? I just told you I'm bipolar-my attention span is like...nil, ok? (laugh) So I've realized for me, that just like what I say in my Who ? section (which I'm sure could use some work,but I suck at trying to be witty while writing my own bio) this blog is where I write about my life. That's my niche. My life. And all the dimensions, nuances, corners, shelves & closets of it. Being transparent about my life. That's my niche, because in my heart of hearts, I want to help people. Encourage people. Talk to people. I love people, even when I'm struggling to have faith in them.
So yes, my blog may be random, it may cover several topics, so if "one size fits all" subject matter is what you're looking for, you're just not going to find it here. And finally, after weeks of wrestling with that, and letting my insecurities telling me I have to be like blogger so & so or only talk about X, I'm at peace with it. I may not be in with the "in crowd" in the blogosphere or the daunting universe that is the world of Mommy Blogging. But I'm in and okay with me and what I write about, good or bad.
I hope, that if you're a reader here, that you are too. And that you at least get something out of what I spill here.
Ever suffer from blogging envy or have a blogging identity crisis? Struggle with the concept of "branding?" Does the term "Mommy Blogger" or the frantic pace of the Mommy Blogosphere seem overwhelming to you too? Why do you write? Feel free to share :)