Saturday, December 18, 2010

Blahg Crisis

Blogging is weird.

Well, it is

I have been in a head space where I don't understand why I come here and talk about whatever is on my mind.   It's not some over-blown existential crisis, it just feels sort of silly.  

More experienced bloggers are probably nodding their heads knowingly, thinking:  Ah, yes.  I remember that phase.  At least I hope they are, because it would be comforting to know that what I'm experiencing is typical and that it will pass.

The words don't come easily to me these days.   I'll come up with an idea for a post on addiction or recovery, and then I'll think:  I already talked about that.  Or the kids will do something clever or funny and I'll start to write a post about it and just lose steam.    Nobody actually wants to read this stuff, do they?  I'll think.

This isn't a fishing trip; I'm not doing a blog post to get comments telling me to keep blogging, blah, blah, blah.   It's just the honest truth:  I feel out of things to say.

So why am I here talking about it? 

I have no idea.  

I was in the supermarket the other day, just watching Normal Regular Ordinary People (NORPs) go about their business and I was thinking about how most people don't go home and feel compelled to write about their life for the world to see -- so what is it about me that wants to do that?

What drives bloggers to put their life out there into cyberspace?

I think part of it is that I'm kind of bored with myself these days.   I'm flat and uninspired.  I occasionally get jazzed up about some new jewelry, but how much can one person talk about making jewelry before peoples' eyes start to cross?  

I'd like to think I blog to become part of a community, not just to project into the world.   But it's almost impossible to divorce ego from blogging.   Of course I'm getting something from it - why else would I do it?    But I'm losing the thread on why I blog.  

I know why I read blogs, at least.  I read other peoples' blogs because I'm in awe of the talent out there.   When I read a post that reaches in and touches my heart, or makes me laugh until tears flow, it fuels my spirit.    I'm not interested in reading bloggers that prattle on and on; I'm drawn to blogs that make me think, laugh or view life in some different way.

I'm feeling like a prattler.   Look at this post:  prattle, prattle, prattle.

Tonight I had dinner with my friend Corinne.  We're talking and laughing, and it hit me:   I would never have known Corinne if I didn't blog.   Or I'll be chatting with Heather on the phone and it will occur to me that a year ago I didn't even know she existed.  Corinne and Heather are like oxygen to me now; I feel like I've known them for ages.    Those friendships are very real, even though they were born from the pixelated world of the internet.  

Maybe that is why I keep on blogging ... because the connections that have come to me since I started are incredible.   Maybe I blog for the same reason I stay sober:   because of the possibilities, the new friendships, the opportunity to become part of new worlds.   Sobriety feels flat to me sometimes, too, when I lose sight of all the gifts it has brought me.   Maybe what I'm missing is good old-fashioned gratitude

Will you help me?  If you're a blogger, will you tell me why you blog?   If you're a blog reader, will you tell me why you read?   Not mine specifically - like I said, this is not a fishing trip.    I'm genuinely curious.  

Maybe you can help shake me out of this, well, flatness.  


  1. I read because I need to hear what you're saying. You've been strong and dealt with the issues that I'm not ready to deal with yet. But I need to hear and be reminded that I can't keep on like this forever. Please keep writing.

  2. I wish I knew why I blogged. I go through this cycle of questioning why I blog and what the heck new can I say several times a year. Every time I come this close to saying the hell with blogging and then it passes and I keep writing. I just try and hang in there until it doesn't feel like I'm being tormented by the why question anymore. So hang in there my friend. Only you can tell your story. And I don't know about you but I am fascinated by peoples' stories.

  3. dude. ME TOO. I feel this way a whole lot these days. In my insecurity I assume I'm doing this for the wrong reasons or that everyone who has ever come across my blog is gagging, they're SO sick of my drivel. (yes, those things flash through my head.)
    But it's also the same for me in that I know such lovely people this way. I really know them. People like you and Corinne and and and....I feel so blessed.
    I'm trying to never force it, to just write when something strikes me (even if I've written about it over and over). I figure there's a reason for whatever is on my mind so I release it to the person it must belong to out there. But then we enter that territory of how much responsibility I have to help everyone else as I tell my stories. blah blah blahg :) I want to, but I can only do so much...just the telling, and then I, once again, have to let go.
    Rambling. And we've talked about most of it. So I shall stop now :)

    Love you.

  4. Oh lady :) I love that you tagged this navel gazing, haha!!
    You speak so much truth about the blogging blahs! I blog for the same reasons that you do, the relationships and whatnot, but also to feel heard. So in that sense, I do write for me. And maybe you need to consider that as well? Write what you want to write about, regardless of if you think someone is going to read it or not, write for you. (easier said than done... doh...) :) xoxo

  5. I enjoy writing and I love reading. But I also check for comments again and again and again. Hmmmmm. I hope that my blog will serve as some sort of a journal for when I am ready to share my recovery with my children. Like when they are 27, ha!
    Keep writing. Your words are like oxygen to someone else. Someone who hasn't talked to you on the phone yet....

  6. I blog because it's an outlet for me. In the bad parts of PPD/A, I NEED a way to release those feelings and emotions because keeping them inside is no good for me or my family. But in the times when I'm feeling whole again? I find it really hard to write because I think people don't want to read about sunshine farts and rainbow dust, you know? But the truth is, they do. People who read our blogs (most of them at least) want to read about our good days AND our bad, because blogging is a community. It's friendships, just like the ones you wrote about here. So keep blogging, Ellie. People are reading.

  7. i read your posts because you're honest. though my personal struggles and past are different than yours, there is commonality there...we're all human, we all make choices we wish we hadn't, we struggle to set things to rights, we keep parenting and creating and learning. your posts keep me more aware, make me feel less alone in my growth process, and remind me that we're all in this life together. even blog entries by someone we'll never meet can create positive change. thanks for your voice!

  8. I like to read blogs to learn about people's lives who are very different from mine, and to remind myself that everyone has to deal with challenges in life (not just me!). I blog because I love writing and getting to know people, and I love that it provides a forum to explore things that are nagging in the back of my mind.

  9. Just wanted to add that I also worry that people don't want to read "another infertility post" or something. But if you write just to please everyone, it won't work anyway, because you can't!

  10. This is so helpful, everyone. THANK YOU. It's comforting to know I'm not the only one who struggles with this...

    I feel like for a long time blogging was like jogging along on a flat, straight road, not effortless but it felt really good, and then WHAM I ran into a brick wall. Now I'm having a hard time getting back up and at it.

    Corinne what you said hit home, too. I think in the earlier days I blogged just for the sake of writing, I wasn't thinking about anyone listening (indeed, I though nobody ever would be listening) and now I'm getting all tangled up in what people want to hear, instead of what I want/need to write about. Not because of some ego-trip, but mostly out of fear that I'll be uninteresting or repetitive. When I started blogging it was much easier to just write and let it go. Now, not so much.

    Like Hope says, I have to stop dwelling on the why, and just do it, I guess. And I realize the world won't end if I take a little break, or post less frequently. I feel afraid that if I'm not out there actively that everyone will go away, and I know that's my own insecurities talking.

    Because I NEED you guys. I really do.

    I need to get back in that head space where I'm doing it because it makes me feel better, like Heather, Miranda and mommaof3 talk about.

    And mdiangie - you touched on perhaps the most important thing - blogging does create a sense that I'm not alone, that there is a community out there of people who understand. Certainly, writing keeps me more aware, and peoples' comments usually give me insight into things I couldn't have come up with on my own.

    Thank you so much for your insights. Please - if you have something to add, I'd love to hear it.

    You guys rock.


  11. I don't know why people blog, but I do know why I read blogs. I read them because I love a good story, carefully crafted and artfully told. I think it is what makes us human, this love of telling and listening to/reading meaningful stories. From the very beginning of time, stories have united people. At the root of all cultures are some commonly shared and deeply loved stories that help explain what is important to that culture.

  12. Sometimes you just need a break until you can find your voice again. I have had to do that many times in my blogging life.
    Now is a perfect time. Give yourself a break until the new year.
    We'll all be waiting....

  13. i blog because if i don't have somewhere to put the running commentary in my head, my head might actually explode. now having said that, the holiday season has numbed my brain and my awareness to the point where i'm just left empty and wordless at the end of the day. my last post was about lolsquirrels. that i photoshopped myself. if that isn't a sign of a blogging roadblock, then i don't know what is. i think if we can hold out until the end of the season, it'll come back to us... i hope...

  14. I have started this comment three times, trying to be witty or heartfelt, and I'm just not pulling it off. For some reason, blogging is a touchy subject for me, right now, as well.
    I started blogging because I needed to take what I was dealing with, and put it somewhere. For me, the hardest part of dealing with a serious issue is not while I am in the midst of the issue, but in the afterward-- trying to understand, and process, and return to normal. Writing has always helped me to organize and calm the thought-stream in my head, and my husband and friends suggested that I go ahead and put it on a blog. I never thought that anyone would read. Sometimes I feel bad for writing down the random crap that enters my head (why would anyone read this?), sometimes I feel like I should just get over myself (do they really want to hear me whine again?), and sometimes I feel like I am doing all of this for the wrong reasons, although it was never my goal to publish a book or make money from advertising, or anything of the sort (do they think I am fishing for something?).
    The worst feeling, however, is the feeling I get after certain posts-- when I think, "I wrote that too fast, that should have been harder, or other people spend more time on their posts and their blogs." I always feel as if I am not really blogging like others blog, since I don't seem to use the same amount of time or the same process as others. Of course, these are only speculations, as well! I have to keep reminding myself that different people approach things in different ways.
    I think that's the greatest benefit of the blogging community-- you have great access to different types of people living their lives in different ways. I crave diversity, and as I see more and more diversity in the blogosphere, it pulls me further and further into the realm!

  15. I read blogs for a variety reasons. Most are amazing writers. Some posts provide the laugh I needed. Some can provide insight into similar situations. Some provide inspiration. Mostly they all help me feel not alone. Even though I don't coment or connect I feel like I know the bloggers and want to see how they are doing today.

  16. I do think it's the connections, for sure I met people through blogging that were in the same place I was when I couldn't find them in real life. And they are precious

  17. Well I read your blog because I want to be sober. I read your blog because I want to know I'm not the only mom and wife out here who feels like its just all too much sometimes. I read your blog because I'm lonely and you make me feel less alone out here. And I read your blog because sometimes your words keep me going and help me to do the right thing one more day at a time, even when it feels hard.

  18. I write because it helps me calm my mind. Get all the stuff swirling around inside out. Like dumbledoor's pensieve... I've had a blog for years not for anyone but me and maybe some family/ friends who were interested then I noticed it was getting 100+ people a day and I shut it down that freaked me out who were these people? Were they gonnna use it against me? Why did anyone care what I was writing? Freaks! I made it private and invited people to ask - let me know who they were and they could see it out of the 100s only two did.

    And then life overwhelmed and I wanted sPace to get it out but more restrained - share ideas I had, uplift, get dialogues going about things near and dear to me, connect with others in similar circumstances. I did that and it started to creep up again and I got talked to at work.../@(:! I don't even know how people findit because well what I had was innocent but people are asses. So I privatized again. Then I was talking to another single parent and we had a bunch of ideas for a space , I set it up and she flakes so I've been going back to my space and figuring out what I want from it.

    I read if I know the person, am amused, gain insight, feel a connection, learn, am inspired or sometimes just want to be a voyeur into lives far different from mine yet people remarkably similar.

  19. Blogging for started as an outlet for my creativity...I felt like those around me were getting their fill of my creative projects. So, I started blogging and sharing not really thinking anyone cared or even saw what I put out there. But little by little the comments came and followers appeared and I discovered a little community of talented creative women. All who are supportive, inspiring and encouraging! These past few months I've been where you are, not sure why I'm doing this and kind of hitting a creative slump, which is why I read blogs, all you out here in the blogosphere inspire, your words and/or photos get me out of lots of slumps!

    Thanks for your honesty and sharing your feelings! I found you through Corinne BTW

  20. hi there --
    i found your blog through some others that i read.
    i have to tell you that i was immediately drawn to your style of writing and your sincere honesty.
    thank you for being so real. your words are powerful and i find myself feeling as if i'm reading my own story sometimes.
    i am new to recovery (3.5 months) and also a mom of 2 - a girl and a boy.
    keep blogging! you are an inspiration!

  21. Hey Ellie - I blog because motherhood is so hard for me - it's nothing like I expected - so I put my experience out there in the hopes of connecting with other mom's who are experiencing something similar. While I love the lovey-dovey mama blogs, I also love the nitty gritty honest blogs - I read them to feel less alone in the world. I read them to feel a little bit more worthwhile. Sometimes I feel so alone in motherhood - reading blogs and blogging makes me feel better, it's that simple. And I know you didn't ask for it but I read your blog because I love it - I take strength from your strength - I'm inspired by your life and your writing. So, thanks :)