My Life As A Blog Guest Post By . . .
Blogger: Lindsey Johnson
Blog: Cafe Johnsonia
Once upon a time, my best friend confided to me that she had a blog. She had to explain to me what a blog was, and upon further inspection, I was immediately hooked. It wasn’t too long afterwards that I convinced my husband to let me trade in my cell phone for the luxury of having internet at home. We were poor as church mice, having just finished grad school, with a 1 year old and another baby on the way. My days were spent changing diapers and lying on the couch to combat morning sickness and exhaustion.
Enter Blogger, my lifesaver and game-changer.
I never realized how much I needed to express myself through writing until I clicked on that “Create a Blog” button. It didn’t seem to matter who was reading my blog as much as knowing that someone, anyone was reading. Or not. Even if no one was reading, it was still out there floating around in cyberspace. That was good enough.
I started out writing about the funny things my daughter did and my pregnancy woes. Sometimes there were funny stories. Sometimes I was brutally honest about my self-esteem issues. Sometimes I posted a recipe.
A few months of immersing myself in the blogosphere led me to the strong desire for a DSLR and the ability to use it. It had been a few years since I’d last picked up my film SLR. Photography was my hobby when I had money and time to burn—both of which were lacking as a new mother of soon-to-be-two small children.
For Mother’s Day, my husband used our tax return to buy me a Nikon D70s with a 50 mm f/1.8 lens. My son was born a few weeks later and I was completely in love with him and my new toy.
Blogging brought back a spark of creativity that I’d long since put on the shelf. I loved and craved the immediateness of taking, uploading, editing, and posting pictures on my blog. I couldn’t paint or draw, but I could take pictures, however rough they seemed to anyone else, I thought they were fantastic. And that’s all that mattered.
Somewhere along the way, maybe a year later, I decided to create a separate recipe blog. Cooking+writing+photography = my true love. My other blog fell by the wayside.
As time passed and my children grew like weeds, I became a little disenchanted with blogging. More blogs were popping up all over and I started comparing myself to them and feeling low. I didn’t have as much time as I did at the beginning. I had hit a wall with my photography. The joy vanished and morphed into ugliness. I hated my blog. And I hated myself.
Eventually I realized that I had been struggling with postpartum depression. That and other issues made me realize I needed to step away. I took down my food blog a few times, always putting it back up at the request of readers. I took over a year off after my third child was born so I could regroup and deal with my depression. Yet I couldn’t deny that blogging was still a part of my life and that there was a little nagging to go back to it.
I met so many women (and a few men) who had really become dear friends and who supported me through all of my craziness and were there when I wanted to come back. It was because of some blogging friends that I realized I had postpartum depression in the first place.
I went to therapy and the gym. I spent time curating a lovely little garden. I got back into touch with who I really was/am. I didn’t stop writing either.
Finally I was ready to come back. I was healthier mentally and physically. It was time. I pulled my creative spark off the shelf again. I picked up my camera again. And I got to work.
That’s not to say that I don’t still have a love/hate relationship with my blog. I do. I wish I had endless hours that I could spend cooking, photographing, uploading, writing, editing, etc. But the dishes need to be washed, homework needs supervising, mouths need to be fed, husbands need attention, and I’m okay with it.
I’m finally okay with myself. And I have blogging, in part, to thank for that.
I hope you enjoyed Lindsey’s post, which is part of an on-going series on Blogstar. If you would like to contribute your own My Life As A Blog post, please email me at sbrydenbrown[at]gmail[dot]com.