Thursday, 1 April 2010

Happy Blogoversary to me!

This is no April Fool, it's been exactly a year today that I started Mummy do that! Somehow, this is an ambivalent landmark (if you can have landmarks relating to time). Thing is, I've been blogging for years, and I do see Mummy do that! as a logical continuation of my original blog, Cartside. There were reasons to change - Cartside had started out as a civil society blog and then, after my daughter was born, I found myself blogging much more about pregnancy, babies, motherhood and all that comes with it. There was a feeling that my blog didn't fit into the platform of the civic society community of civiblog. On technical terms, I was also worried that civiblog might cease to exist as emails didn't get answered and generally there didn't seem to be any humans behind the platform anymore. Another reason to change was that the civiblog community never really was that - all those civic society people were very much caught up in their own very busy spheres and there was no real community to speak of.

I changed to an ostensibly mummy blog because I thought that's what my blog had become, without every intending to letting go of the other stuff that I feel passionate about. I wanted to increase my readership, engage in a debate rather than blog in isolation with hardly any readers or comments. I wanted to make sure that I was on a blogging platform that wouldn't suddenly disappear.

In the past year, I did increase my readership. I was introduced to many more blogs - so many in fact that often I spend all evening reading blogs, rather than getting around to posting myself. I'm a real comment junkie and love the way that almost every post does get some comments (even if not the same number that many other blogs get). I'm not a community junkie - I'm quite happy to engage with just a few bloggers who I value for a variety of, but specific, reasons, and even that is fleetingly because I simply have very little time at my hands (how on earth do some people manage to tweet almost constantly? No way I could ever even think of keeping that up).

The one thing that I struggle with now is that I'm still not entirely comfortable with being part of the mummy blogger community. Muddling Along Mummy eloquently raised the perception of mummy bloggers as something not as valuable, possibly limited to just talking about babies and kids and that really, mummy bloggers all have their own identity, and an impressive breadth of topics they cover. And yet we let ourselves be defined by the term mummy. I try to see the positives - it is a very supportive community, one that anyone would feel comfortable in and I like that. I also appreciate the diversity of this blogging community and never assume that a mummy blogger has nothing more to say than when the first tooth of their firstborn came through. Yet it's a question of balance and after 3 years of being a mummy, most of my posts are not about the fact that I have a child. However, my perspective on life has been influenced by just that fact, so that even if I don't blog about being a mummy, it influences my views, my interests, my passions. Just from a different angle than before.

So, in a way, I wish I hadn't maybe picked a blog title that made it so blooming obvious that this is a mummy blog. I'm still happy with the label, because I do believe that we mummy (and daddy) bloggers can make the label mean so much more than it may currently mean for some people. But having it in the title, well, not so sure if that was a good idea (though I still love the title as such, as it comes straight from the mouth of my little firecracker).

The great thing about the mummy blogger community is that everything is possible, and I still feel this is where I belong. More so anyway than any of the alternatives. So you'll be glad to know that this blog will be continued. Possibly with more mummy stuff anyway, can't really ignore that bump of mine growing and taking on worrying proportions.



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