Blogaphor’ia n. a sense of delight taken by an author as they consider new topics to write about in their blog. The pleasure taken in mulling over ideas, suggestions and events and their worth as blogging matter.
I am, probably as all new bloggers are, currently in a state of blogaphoria. There are frequent moments during my day now where ideas for blog content present themselves, so much so, that I think I need to carry a notepad with me at all times… Who knows if this feeling lasts? One of the first blogs I read when starting my research was http://yetanotherbloomingblog.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/in-which-i-use-phrase-here-we-are-far.html. In it Antonia shared some of her disillusionment over the last year or so with blogging (she’s been blogging since 2006, and despite how she’s feeling, writes brilliantly). I guess there are inevitable high and lows in the process and much depends on why you choose to blog in the first place. It’s also the case that there are downsides to blogaphoria; I’m already just a little too attached to checking my ‘stats’ (finding out how many reads I’ve had or followers I’ve got, for the uninitiated), and I probably need to have a quiet word with myself about letting that go! Nevertheless, I am blogaphoric and proud, and in it for the long haul.
Does blogging make me a better mummy?
I find myself wondering whether it does. I have a hunch that we all occasionally modify our parenting when we have an audience. You know the sort of thing I mean; those times when someone’s watching, so out of embarrassment or some other emotion, you choose not to completely lose the plot with your tantrumming toddler. Well having a blog brings a new dimension to that phenomenon. It’s as if someone else is with me all the time, standing back and casting a supportive but objective eye over what I am doing and occasionally injecting ‘is that really how you want to handle this moment?’.
Not that being a parenting blog author means I am making any kind of claim to being an exemplary parent. Not at all. I recognise that I come up short quite a lot of the time. Before I had kids (yet so desperately wanted them) I often fantasized about how great I would be at playing with my kids, coming up with brilliant activities on a daily basis, so that my children would consider me the most fun-lovingist mum in the whole widest world. I’m pretty certain, in reality, that my four-year old daughter considers me far too serious for my own good, and utterly incapable of ‘chilling out’. We get in from pre-school, and sadly I don’t immediately turn into a happy blend of Mr Maker and Justin Fletcher. Instead, I rush round ‘getting stuff done’, asking her to wait just a bit longer for mummy to be free, numerous times over. Oh well. At least I can admit it.
But you know, since I started writing this blog, I have stopped to savour the moment with my kids more often than usual. I’ve got down on the rug, put a silly wig on, and made my little girl laugh. I’ve extended a cuddle with my son for a few more moments than previously, finding it easier to hold off the long list of tasks in favour of enjoying the moment. I’ve resisted the temptation to feel exasperated, and had rather more wry smiles to myself, than I did the week before. And today, when out for a Sunday afternoon walk through magnificent autumn colours, I felt really emotional about my intense good fortune that the four of us were together, and could call ourselves a family. Clichés exist for a reason, and that one about enjoying these years because they are soon gone really is true. Somehow, this blog has me remembering it more often, and I’m grateful for that.
P.S. Thanks to those of you who’ve started to follow me, it means a lot!