I attended a great live talk this week on the state of the Mom Blogosphere 2012 that made me think a lot about why I blog. I have had this blog for several years--six? seven? And although it lay dormant for a few, I always had intentions of coming back.
Apparently there is some money to be made by blogging. I have no idea how much. That's never really been my focus. I'd like to say that's because I am a purist, that I blog to lay bare my innermost soul to the world, to touch the hearts and minds of my readers. But that's not quite true; I could probably count on one hand the number of hearts I've touched, and as for touching minds? Highly unlikely.
The main reason I haven't been blogging for dollars is that I haven't figured out how to do it in a way that seems genuine to me. I have friends who have blogs on which they review or promote products. Their blogs are well written and informative. They don't feel fake or forced. I've had a few offers to review products. Most of them I've turned down, because it's just not something that felt right to me. I know in my heart that I would not turn pirouettes in real life over the virtues of tungsten wedding bands. So I'm not going to do it on my blog for a few bucks. Or a tungsten wedding band. (And just what would I do with that band, anyway? Say to my beloved, "Oh, sweetheart, I'd marry you all over again...with this inexpensive yet highly durable ring that I got for free!")
So, I'm not blogging for fortune, and I'm clearly not blogging for fame, since this blog has a readership of approximately two. Of which I am one. Mark you: I would love to be one of those bloggers that everyone knows and adores, to have all eyes follow me as I walk around BlogHer and to have all the cool bloggers want to be my friend. I would like to be in a cool blogger posse. I suspect the fact that I can even imagine a cool blogger posse marks me as terminally unhip. I am completely cognizant of the fact that when all eyes are following me around the room, I should check to make sure the back of my skirt isn't tucked into my pantyhose. Again. Dammit.
Why blog, then? For the same reason now as six or seven years ago. This blog is like off-site storage for the clutter in my brain. I suppose I could keep a diary to the same end. That would be more private, but would eliminate the other advantage of a blog: the chance that on any given day, I might write something that would connect with someone. That there might be that moment of recognition, that spark, that, "Oh my God, me too!" It's okay if there's not; those things can't be manufactured. In fact, I think it's what happens when you stop playing to the gallery and start speaking your truths. Whether or not anyone hears or agrees, those things are still true. And when that truth resonates with someone else, it glows, and you get a glimpse of what is true for them.
It's a little like looking out of your window in the dark and seeing a light on in a neighbor's kitchen, and someone reading or laughing or pouring coffee. And suddenly you can picture yourself there too, and you know somehow you'd be welcome.
And that, I guess, is why I still blog.