I have a confession to make.
I think blogging is stupid.
Don’t get me wrong; I love-love my blog-folk with mad-crazy ferocity. I really do.
The people with whom I’ve developed a virtual comradery are as much a “real” part of my day-to-day life as the poopy diapers I change and the seventy-three bags of garbage I take outside after dinner and the eighteen loads of laundry I wash, dry, and fold in a twenty-four hour period.
Maybe that’s why these otherwise perfect strangers have come to mean so much to me: they are my daily honeymoon from the real-world monotonies of being a stay-home mother of five boys.
Blogging is a vacation, during which I travel to distant lands and relax in the novelty of some unexpected idea for half an hour or so, being romanced by the experience of thoughts exchanged. Every few hours I get to take a mental hiatus from the twins fistfighting; the pre-teen disappearing; the three-year old teaching the infant how to dump the contents of the refrigerator into the toilet until the water turns into a condiment-colored waterfall and makes rainbows on the hall carpet; the neighbors stopping by to visit and catch up on the latest catastrophe; the casserole burning in the oven while the phone continues to shriek incessantly, the ringtone ruining my love of that favorite song and reminding me that my husband is nowhere near as busy as I am while the satellite repairman asks for the fifth time where he can access the attic; the pre-teen reappearing followed by a riotous outbreak of adolescent screaming over the pre-teen refusing to join in their wrestlemania…
This isn’t an exaggeration. It’s a fairly accurate glimpse into the life I lead, on days that don’t involve trips to the hospital or broken furniture or nervous breakdowns, of course.
But “blogging”? The word sounds archaic and desperate. Like a nerd, trying too hard to get invited to the “cool kid’s” party on Friday night. Like something all the mid-lifers do to substitute the less intellectual-seeming habit of facebook trolling. As a practice, I (still) have yet to call myself a “blogger.”
It isn’t the blogging that has us hooked like suburban cyber-junkies. It’s really not “blogging” at all. It’s writing, publicly. It’s thinking, publicly. It’s daring to throw yourself onstage — and discovering there’s a REAL, LIVE audience waiting to hear what you have to say. Most of all, it is the magic and wonder of words. Words on fire. Words in motion. Words with kinetic power to transform your day into a more vibrant shade; a more thoughtful frame of mind; a more aware and centered vibe with which you can return to everyday living. It’s a break from reality — for ten or fifteen or forty-five minutes; on your laptop, on your smart phone, in your car or locked in your bedroom while the children get a crash course in survival 101.
It’s a community of people who are interested, and interesting. You don’t have to sort through news feeds of who-had-what for lunch and where that one guy takes his hamster for emergency veterinarian care, or who’s child is ten times cuter than yours (for the fifteenth time today).
I still don’t know all the rules. Can I change the word? That would really help. I say we call it YES!-ing. Or dackta-ballooping. Or some similarly ridiculous term that seemingly comes from nowhere and sounds much like an underwater sea-lion doing some underwater thing. You know. Whatever.
I respond too sporadically to my fellow bloggers, too seldom at times, and yet with too long of a response when I do. Yes, I’m the person who hijacks your threads. I thought it would be a compliment! My way of expressing how much your thoughts inspired my thoughts. . . (Boggles my mind. Hey! Let’s call it “boggling”!!)
I have no idea what a widget is, or how to pingback (wait, is that a verb or a noun?); I probably don’t follow as many “boggles” as I should but I’m ADD, and frankly I’m doing well to manage the few I’ve followed without one of my children seriously injuring themselves, or worse. (I mean, not really. But sort of.)
I can’t figure out all the ‘ins’ and ‘outs’ of “blogosphere” ‘etiquette’. I’ve irritated quite a few people, gained and misplaced a handful of followers, and yet somehow I manage to continue making progress.
Just do me a favor WordPress: have some mercy on me. I’m a frazzled, couped-up stir-crazy mom who also happens to be a writer. I’m not here for notoriety or accolades, and I’m likely to mess up the all these manners I know I should have learned by now; but I promise, I’m learning and growing.
I love this place, in all its diversity. I love the brilliant minds, shining like diamonds, illuminating their own perfect wonder into my days.
I cherish what all of you have to say. And for what it’s worth: I’m listening. 🙂