Life admin. Newborn. Non sleeping toddler. Illnesses. Work. Depression. Anxiety. Imposter syndrome. More work. Wedding. Toddler. Newborn & toddler.
These are just some of the reasons I’ve not written a single blog post in 618 days. I’m those 618 days I have put my son into nursery, started back at work, planned a wedding, got married, been pregnant again and have had another baby (not including all the work happening parallel to this!) So why am I bothering now? Well I pay for the hosting for one… but in all seriousness, because I miss it. I miss how cathartic it used to be for me. I miss how much it showed the real me and all I’ve been through. I’ve been listening to podcasts recently – for pretty much the first time properly – mainly Fearne Cotton’s The Happy Place and Happy Baby, Happy Mum, and particularly with guests Paloma Faith, Matt Haig, Fearne and Sarah Turner aka “The Unmumsy Mum”. They made me realise just how much I missed this, miss writing, miss being creative and and miss showing the real me. Something that has been a part of what I am since the 90’s with Live Journal and is a big reason I’ve ended up where I am today career wise – so why let it go?! Even if I’m the only one who reads it, it’s done something good for me.
Of course I’m into social media and have been on the forefront of it most of the time, early adopter and what have you – it’s my job – but as microblogging/sharing platforms came about, blogging tailed back massively. I could share my thoughts in a 140 characters (then!) on Twitter and have a real-time discussion, what wasn’t to love?! As an insecure person, this was a great next platform to share my thoughts, experiences, learnings etc – without having to share my physical self and I could still edit before hitting send.
While I have a degree in photography and have studied video editing a number of times, the capacity for dedicated time in my life to keep on these things as personal hobbies (mainly due to partying, working too much and hangovers no doubt – and now children!) never really worked out. I never got big into visual content creation in the film realm. Then snapchat became big while J was a baby, but if anyone of you have had a non-sleeping baby, you know that anything you need to watch with sound to engage with, well it probably isn’t going to happen! Along comes Instagram Stories and the same problem. From the watching and filming front to be honest – come on Instagram – integrated automatic subtitles!)
On top of technology bypassing my skill levels (and the lack of time to ‘level up’ – I’m a hopeless perfectionist.) it also bypassed my comfort zone.
In the industry I work in, I spend time around various types and ages of people, as well as work with ‘influencers’, brands etc and am very, very aware of how some people judge others quite ruthlessly and without a second thought. This on top of already existing anxiety and depression, whilst striving to be a successful career woman, good mum and living with the career/mum guilt have piled on insecurities that would be most commonly recognised in a young high school girl as opposed to a 37 year old adult. So I rarely talk to the camera. I do post the selfie here and there, but try to show the reality of my life more than the “Instaperfect” side – and to be honest? If you know me – it’s pretty hard for an imperfect perfectionist to have an Instaperfect feed! Especially when I can’t use my real camera because my toddler steals it (and tries to break it) and I don’t have a more recent phone.
Social media and Instagram especially are funny (for lack of a better word) in how they can have such an impact on how you feel about your own life. I am always so thankful when someone who seems to have it all together shares a bit of insight into the other side of their life/their reality. It says more about my insecurity than their lives, but if it helps me, it must help others. The struggle is real, let’s not hide it!
Then there are the topics I feel very strongly about – personally or work wise. Do I put them in writing, will it effect my career, friendships, reputation either directly or indirectly? Am I giving some sort of secrets away I didn’t realise were secrets? Did I overstep an invisible boundary I wasn’t aware of? Obviously, if really in doubt, don’t, but if it’s just mild insecurities and self-doubt holding me back, then that’s another story.
So here I am now – on the back foot? I don’t know. I see mummy bloggers etc document their days and to be honest, if I try to get something with my children/while with them it usually goes tits up (as one might say). I break my phone screen (again), they break their bodies or something that no doubt can’t be replaced. I’m not sure that’s me or ever will be. Not to mention the husband would not be impressed if I put tantrum pictures up!
My goal for this post is to get me going again, get me back feeling confident in my comfort zone, not worried what others might think and just being true to myself, both here and across my social platforms. Perhaps by spelling it out and having it visible for public consumption, I’ll be held to it. I’ve already got my girl gang on call to keep me in check and powering forward. Newborn & toddler permitting! So here we go again…