5 ways blogging saved my sanity
Not yet a blogger? This run-down of blogging perks from Mumsnet Bloggers’ Network member Kirsty Smith (aka Eeh Bah Mum) may convince you to try your hand...
In 2012 I moved back home to Yorkshire from London. We acquired loads more space in which to keep plastic crap - but I left all my baby friends behind. Who the hell was I going to talk to about my leaky nipples?
'Random strangers on the Internet - they'll do!' I thought. So I started writing a blog.
Here are five reasons why - incredibly - that was actually a good decision.
1. It gave me a voice
Image credit: Laugh Spark
One that speaks in sentences and uses long words. When you're at home with small children you have a voice - but it is a shrill, high-pitched one with an edge of panic, that says things like 'put that down!', 'please stop licking the floor' and 'have you been eating rabbit poo again?'. Blogging gives me an opportunity to have an adult conversation. At home, no one listens to a bloody word I say, but 170,000 people read my blog in August this year. Only a tiny minority of them will have ingested rabbit poo.
2. I learned new skills
Image credit: ABC via VibeVixen/Wordpress
I built a website. Sure, it's not a very good one - and I'm not entirely sure how I managed it - but it exists. I did it. Sitting at home swearing and ramming Tunnock’s Teacakes down my terrified gob, I googled 'How to build a website' and did what the lady in the video told me. Since I started blogging I've edited websites, become a social media whizz and mastered the art of writing whilst picking raisins out of coir matting.
3. I met some nice people
Image credit: Columbia Pictures via Surviving College
I was going to put 'I'm part of the blogging community' - but that sounds tedious. And it's not.
There are people out there using their blogs to change the world. Mums and Dads, sitting in the kitchen writing about their lives and being fucking awesome. Through blogging, I’ve met people online and in real life, and they were funny, they were inspiring, lots of them were outspoken, a few were shy - but none of them were boring.
They were all busy: doing stuff, taking pictures, reviewing things, raising money for charity, raising awareness, raising children.
4. I went away for the weekend
Image credit: Paramount Pictures via Giphy.com
When I told my partner I was going away to Blogfest with a load of gobby women I'd only ever met on the internet, he pointed out that it sounded like a brilliant idea for a horror movie. But <spoiler alert> I didn't get killed by a vengeful troll intent on wiping out parenting bloggers. Instead, there were free cocktails, a goody bag and no children to look after. Terrifying.
5. I carried a watermelon
Image credit: Artisan Pictures via Blogspot and imgflip
I didn't actually carry a watermelon. I have people to do that for me.*
Instead I appeared in the local paper dressed as a Morris Dancer - which, let me tell you, is way less cool than lugging a popular summer fruit past Patrick Swayze. I should probably point out that this kind of embarrassment is not necessarily a by-product of blogging - but writing a blog can open the door to all manner of wonderful adventures, only some of which will involve making a tit of yourself in the local paper.
* I don't. Although I'm trying to train my children to do this.
If you want to find out more about blogging - or simply want to hear from some incredible speakers and grab the free cocktails and goody bag Kirsty mentions - join us for Blogfest on 8 November.