It's hard for me to believe that I've been blogging for three years. Three years ago, I didn't know what a blog was, had never read a blog, and didn't know that I'd ever have my own blog. I was a busy corporate mom, working way too many hours, feeling out of sorts in both my professional world and my personal one. My only source of "venting" was a daily call to my mother and emotionally unloading more on my spouse than should be allowed in a healthy relationship.
In a nut shell, I was struggling.
I still remember the day that I received an email from an acquaintance of mine, Jill Asher. We belonged to the same Mother's Club. A club that I was desperately trying to make "work" in my life but wasn't feeling the support I needed. Jill sent out an email on the Mother's Club calling for writers. Jill was co-founding a blog for mothers in Silicon Valley and she needed mothers willing to write about their unique experiences mothering children in the land of high tech.
Without giving it much thought, I emailed her back. I wanted to write about my life as a working mom. One that I was finding more exhausting than rewarding. I wanted to tell the truth about what it's like to work in high-tech where many women "opt-out" of their careers to have kids. Where VP's complain about not having enough money. Where I fight every day to not get put on the "mommy-track."
Honestly, I was afraid that the SV Mom's blog would be one-sided with SAHM's talking about taking their kids to the park and paying for enrichment classes for babies. I wanted to be the voice of the working mom. I know, sounds a little pompous when I think about it now. At the time, I was feeling like I was the only working mom in the valley. I was disconnected from my community.
Turns out, I found my "mother's club" in the blogging community. Most of these women, I've never met in real life. We are a virtual group of women, writing honestly about our lives, telling secrets and sharing advice. We were a mix of homemakers, executives, teachers, corporate moms, and entrepreneurs. We were all struggling in some way. I connected with these women on a whole other level. I realized that the SAHM wasn't my adversary (as I had felt in my real-life Mother's Club) but my ally. My friend.
I never expected to meet some of my closest and dearest friends through blogging. I never expected to find a community literally by the click of the mouse. Honestly, I never expected that my biggest group of support would be from stay-at-home moms willing to set up play-dates around my work schedule or offer to bring over meals when I'm sick.
And it's not just in my own backyard. I've made connections with women all over the world without ever having to the leave the comfort of my living room. Through this virtual world, I think we've really begun to create a discourse about motherhood unlike any generation before us.
Did I imagine any of this when I started writing three years ago? Not at all. And that's what I've loved most about blogging. It has surpassed all my expectations. It's created a whole new avenue for me to not only express myself but connect with the world around me. And it's not just mother's connecting. It's people of color, dads, artists, singletons, humorists. Even big corporations have blogs. Online media has transformed. Social media has made a name for itself.
In a nut shell, blogging changed my world.
I'm still the exhausted, over-worked, stressed-out corporate mom that I was three years ago. But this time, I've got people. I've got a community. And I know that I'm not alone.
This post was written as a part of the Mabel's Label Blogher '09 Contest. Mabel's Labels (a product I love and have used for years) is running a contest to send a blogger to Blogher's conference in July. I'll tell you, there is no better feeling in the world than meeting a fellow blogger in person. It's like sort of like bumping into your best friend from elementary school. Only this time you don't have to waste any time asking what they've been up to all these years.
UPDATED: I was selected as one of ten finalists for the Mabel's Labels BlogHer 09 Contest. Please go over there and vote for me. Polls are open until Noon EST on February 23rd