Back in high school, I used to read Dooce excessively. Not quite to the point of understanding all the stuff she was saying (because her writing style can be VERY long-winded and convoluted), but more so out of infatuation. Her site was something to behold. She kept people’s attention. She took lovely pictures of her lovely little home. I wanted that life and dreamed of it one day being mine.
I blogged daily back in the early 00s. It was what teenagers (and mainly girls) did online, exposing our deepest selves to the deepest voids of the internet. Reflecting back, I realize how foolish it was. Nobody really read my teen angst ramblings. I often forced my friends to read. They often feigned interest but never stuck around for the daily deluge of my roller coaster of insecurity and grandiose sense of self.
In my later years of high school, I started sharing my fiction online. People seemed more interested in reading the fiction, so I kept posting more and more. Granted, none of my stories were really all that good, but I guess my work work still showed a vein talent beneath the surface. So I kept writing. I kept sharing it. Then I realized that sharing it for free with the hopes that people would flock to it was the way to really build a writing career.
Real Life Sucks Losers Dry
In college, when I started dating my now-husband (named Jon, just like Dooce’s then-husband), my need to share my life dried out. It got reeeeal crispy. There was no longer any drama, any angst. The honeymoon period of my relationship pulled me so quickly into reality that I couldn’t escape back into the Internet. I had nothing to tell strangers because I was living out real-life shit. Experiencing it for once.
At one point I remember that having a relationship would give me SO MUCH FODDER for blogs, but none of what I experienced was anything I wanted to share. Because it was mine. Nobody else needed to know about it other than Jon and myself. We were happy. We were thriving.
At one point I DO recall us having a very minor fight when he wanted to practice with his band instead of hanging out with me, and I blew things way out of proportion thinking, “Oh, this is the part where our relationship gets rocky and I’ll have GOOD stuff to blog about!”
But then I went to work and the fight didn’t mean anything when he came over the next day. We made up and I had no reason to write about it.
Blogging was no longer that coping mechanism to feel like a cool and functional person in reality.
The Perfect Life
Flash forward to now, where my guilty pleasure is reading about Dooce on r/BlogSnarkUncensored, where there’s always a week by week discussion on, uhhhhhh, whatever is going on with Dooce’s life. She and her husband separated years ago, and then when the Instagram ideal became the main way of sharing one’s life online with strangers, it seemed the whole trend of “mommy blogging” was on the decline.
Dooce’s current status is bizarre and strange and many hate-followers speculate that she’ll use her remaining influence to inevitably turn her entire website into an affiliate marketing machine. WHICH IS WHAT ALL BLOGS ARE FOR NOW, ARE THEY NOT?
Well, now I’m a mom myself with a husband named Jon, just like Dooce was at one point. I have achieved the dream but was unable to properly write about it! Because I was writing fiction instead. And my life is kind of boring. I don’t do much. I work retail and refuse to write about it. Dooce taught me not to do that.
I had two kids but refuse to write about them because they need privacy and stuff and I hate talking mom stuff all the damn time. I already LIVE that much redundancy, why would I want to RELIVE it by writing about it?
I write fiction but I feel weird writing about writing fiction because I don’t know how to tell people to write well. I just want you to read the fiction I write.
I’ve tried to find enough recipes online and stumbled over “mom recipe blogs” blogs so cluttered with ads and affiliate links that the site practically breaks upon my visit. I’m so fucking done with this bullshit trend of people (mainly women) making a “side income” online by peddling a bunch of shit on Amazon.
I miss mom blogs. I miss blogs in general, when people would share the most mundane aspects of their lives. If there was anything to take away from that pretty crappy Netflix docu-series on the disappearance of Elisa Lam, it was seeing the impact that her Tumblr blog had with strangers online. Stories matter to people, nomatter how mundne.
My personal blogs might never get many hits, but they do get the most comments from readers. I do wish that I COULD blog more about my personal life, but honestly, it’s still pretty lame.
I work retail and would never speak ill of my job.
I do mom stuff but I’m a pretty mediocre mom.
I love my husband but there is truly nothing more awful than listening to strangers gush online about how amazing and handsome and wonderful their spouses are.
I also have a lot of self-esteem issues and anxiety about all kinds of stuff, which is worthy blog fodder, right? That’s the real meat, right? I should blog about that more often, right?
Getting More Personal
So I plan on it. Blogging more about me. Because there’s a generation of people online who I think are still craving for that kind of content. It’s harder to find now beneath the layers of sponsored content and MLM huns and filtered lifestyles, but people still desire to read real thoughts and feelings.
That’s why we all read fiction, I think. That’s why I prefer to spend much of my free time pretending to be somebody else. I want to use my story to tell other stories. I want to use my story to branch out and build metaphors and understand other people’s stories.
I’m 34 now, and the older I get, the more I realize little nuggets about myself that I never paid much attention to. And I should probably write some of them down.