OK so not necessarily ‘the world’, but they certainly rule.
When I pregnant with my first baby I read everything and anything I could lay my hands on about carrying and then raising a child.
To me knowledge was power. I sucked it all in. I even listened to my mother.
I believed it would mean that I could make informed decisions and say things like ‘but Spock told me it’s OK to do that’ (I’m kidding).
Just because we have the ability to get pregnant and give birth doesn’t mean we immediately become baby experts.
Well, not me, for sure.
I was convinced I would be hopeless at it, that my maternity gene had been switched off and that I needed to find a way to jump start it into action.
So my son was born and I think I did a pretty good job of it and then when he was three I stumbled into blogging. I mean totally stumbled. I had no idea what it was or who these women were pouring their hearts out and writing about all manner of random stuff; really bottom of the heart stuff. Stuff I found I couldn’t drag myself away from.
And I discovered that actually, some of things I had read in books and magazines were not entirely accurate. I was not being given the full story.
I felt duped.
Mummy bloggers write about their lives with a level of honesty and grit that I wanted to read when I was pregnant.
This is the motherhood I craved to learn about; the deep, dirty, pull your hair out, cry in the dark in the middle of the night sort of motherhood.
The breath-taking joy, the boundless love. Reality.
I wanted to know what it would really be like, not the sanitised, 1950s version with 2.4 kids, perfect housewife mum and a dapper dad from Mad Men.
Blogging is a conversation. It’s one woman saying to others ‘yes it’s bloody tough. It’ll make you cry until you have no more tears to cry. But it will be OK. It will be worth it. I’ve come through the other side and so will you’.
Or even just ‘I’ve been there. I’m listening’. It’s amazing just how comforting that can be.
And it gives you the ability to share. You’re not just listening, you can ‘talk’. You can shout back, shake your head, nod your head, say ‘thank GOD you feel like that too. I’m not alone’.
Before blogging, anything I read had the difficult, ugly bits taken out.
There was no talk of the crushing boredom, or the guilt or the fact that you were fed up to the back teeth of being a snot rag to a housebound poorly child. There weren’t the sort of stories that make you gasp and put your hand to your mouth in shock (I’m pretty much looking at you here now More Than Just A Mother!) because someone else was saying the things that you’d considered but never dared do.
Likewise there wasn’t a feeling of what those simple pleasures are really like; When your baby smiles at you, breastfeeding in the middle of the still of the night with your your baby’s smell enveloping you, the day your child goes to school.
Then I immersed myself into blogging and I discovered others like me, many others nothing like me.
But we all had one thing in common; we were mothers, finding it hard, looking for reassurance, looking to reach out – and looking for a touch of entertainment into the bargain.
Through blogging I have discovered amazing humour, heart wrenching tragedy, insecurity, loneliness, soaring joy, crushing lows, people living from one crisis to the next.
People who I feel a connection with because they are sharing intimate moments of their life with me and even if I can’t understand what they’re saying, I can reach out and listen.
Right there is the sort of amazing network of support and understanding all parents crave.
I have been blogging since 2007 and have been lucky to make some amazing friends along the way. I’ve met inspiring people, stumbled on many many new bloggers and read some utterly amazing stories.
I blog for me, for my family, to give us all a reminder of the journey we’re all travelling together.
And if just one person visits and feels a sense of ‘oh god, I’m not alone’ then that is the icing on the cake.
All of which is my way of asking you all, what does blogging mean to you? And what do you get out of it?