Intentional Blogging #1: Why do I blog?
Why do I blog? I’m afraid to answer that question sometimes because I’m afraid of being labeled a sell-out.
Around here I hear a lot of talks about how a blog should be, and I understand, I really do. Why wouldn’t I? I started out with the same motivation and intention. But life moves, and my blog automatically moves along with me.
When I started blogging, all I wanted was to talk about my son and my life with him. I was a stay-at-home mom and my life was basically made up of taking care of him, the laundry, dinners with the hubby and the baby, and time spent with good friends, and my faith.
Then I became deeply involved in ministry and my blog then also became a platform in sharing about how God has been moving in my life, clearly aware that there were women looking to me for encouragement in their own spiritual walks.
But I wasn’t blogging full time until a little more than two years ago when I started doing marketing and I needed to learn how social media and the internet work as a whole. I got into blogging communities and welcomed other work-at-home and blogger mommies into my life.
It all happened at a time I agreed to move away from our friends and families to be nearer where my husband works. With a busy husband and two young kids and a baby to look after, going out was rare. I couldn’t seem to fit in the way I fit in back in the South too so I relied heavily on the internet for my social life.
Virtual friends not real friends?
I’ve read articles that say that online friends cannot be real friends…this is not entirely true. In my opinion, it just takes longer time to build a relationship, after all, friendships are tested through time.
There were some whom I got disappointed with and others who were disappointed with me just as it happens outside the virtual sphere, but I’ve found some good hearts, fellow blogger moms like me who basically share lifestyles close to mine.
Unlike traditional friends, we have lesser opportunities to bond in person. We get to see each other in blogger events such as Blogapalooza on Sunday which happens once a year, but most of the time we just connect through Facebook and through each other’s blog posts.
Other moms get together for kiddie play dates, but it’s quietly understood that our priorities are our families and taking care of them.
Marketing in blogging
The mom blogger communities I’m in are wonderful and most of us share the delight of getting invited to try items, products, venues, restaurants, or shows to see or try and blog about them.
So my blog evolved into that, too. And the word “sell-out” rang in my ear. (Let me clarify that no one bluntly accused me of it, but I can’t help feeling that way every time talks like that come up).
I love trying out products and joining recipe contests for bloggers (I even won one!); I love taking my kids to kiddie places for free, or scoring tickets to shows to take them to,or we wouldn’t have been able to otherwise; I love being able to do stay-cations with the family in hotels we never imagined we would ever be able to afford for a long time, and I love being able to ask my husband on a date at one of the best buffets in town!
What I’m trying to say is that, yes, my blog is full of stuff like the ones I mentioned. There’s a lot of marketing involved in there, I admit. And for a while, I’ve been happy with it. I took each brand to heart and I integrated them into my life. There’s nothing there that’s not authentically me. And I genuinely want to share my joy for them to others.
But since I joined Intentional Blogging last year, I’ve had this nagging feeling of wanting to give my readers so much more.
I want to give more of me.
So why will I blog?
If you read my posts, you’ll find snippets of my personal life threaded into my content. That’s because deep inside, I know there’s so much more I want to talk about . Not just about these products, these venues, or these shows. There’s another side of me that has some stuff to teach, to share, but I chickened out last year. I wasn’t ready.
I read a lot of blogs and I have my favorites. And these blogs are nothing like how my blog has turned out. At times, I wish I can be as courageous as these women. For the past two years, I doubted that anyone would want to hear what I have to say, after all, who am I that others should listen to me?
But maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m just letting my fears get the better of me.
So why will I blog?
I will blog because I want to reveal more of God’s work in me. That woman that battles it out to honor God through her relationships – with her husband, with her kids, with her parents, with her family, with her church, with her friends.
That woman who’s gone through some dark times in her life and was redeemed through the power of the cross.
That woman who sees the blessing in a free pack of pasta, or in the two balcony tickets to a play, or at a free trip to the museum.
That woman who is just like every woman who has her struggles, her issues, her frustrations and fears, but who also has her victories, her faith, her spiritual breakthroughs, and her strength.
That woman who wants to bless others.
I admit, I didn’t show much of that woman the past two years.
I will this year.