I Can Only Be Me

There are times when I struggle with how honest to be in Blog World. How private do I want to be? What secrets am I willing to reveal? How vulnerable do I want to be to complete strangers? Ok, some of you aren’t complete strangers anymore, but you get the drift.

I started this blog as an experiment. I had an idea for another blog, with a much more specific purpose. I created this blog to play around, get my feet wet, see what it’s all about. And I have to tell you: I’m having a blast.

Most of the time.

The other times I struggle. Not with what to say – but if I should say it. And if I’m saying it “right.” Oh, I have plenty to say. I’m not kidding. There have been times when I have the posts scheduled a week out with 6 more drafts waiting in the wings. But do I share it? Who else will I expose by sharing it (my family)? Who will judge me and what will they think when I share it?

And then there’s the pressure I put on myself. I wanna be funny like Shauna Glenn and The Bloggess. Or cerebral like Steven. Or host the perfect parties like Velva. Or write, with such grace as many of you do, about your children, your lives, your adventures. And now this is becoming a link-fest — but I think you understand what I’m saying. I read and read and read other blogs and I think, ugh. I could never be that funny, kind, smart, adventurous, have such great photos, write that beautifully, etc., etc., etc., after etc.

All I can do is what I do. I can only be me.

Hey. Now that’s a revelation. And I’d love to say I discovered it myself. I didn’t. I found it here.

I have a conversational tone to my writing. There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s a valid style. I’m more the straight man with a few funny one-liners. Everybody needs a straight man. (Funny aside: when you google “famous straight man” about 1/2 the hits are about being gay vs. straight than about comedy duos. Oh, how the times they are a changin’!) I’m a Google nut. I’m interested in so many things I’ll never be an expert at any one thing. Eh, there are too many experts out there, anyway. I write in incomplete sentences. I like incomplete sentences. I’m a rule follower that sometimes doesn’t play by the rules. Deal with it.

You’re going to judge me. I’m going to offend you. Some may never come back to this blog again. But I promise you this: I will always be honest. I will always write from the heart. I am not perfect. I have moments and pieces of me that I’m not proud of. And you’re going to hear about one of them tomorrow.

 But it’s who I am.

Imperfect ME.

(P.S. Don’t forget about our get together Friday, November 13th. Collect the craziest search terms for your blog and we’ll all share them on Friday. You can write them in the comment section or blog about it – but don’t forget to link/comment here so we can all see them! See you Friday!)

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18 Comments

Filed under Self Image, Soapbox

18 responses to “I Can Only Be Me

  1. Yes, well you know that writing what is *really* going on is a big issue for me. I had an online journal 10 years ago now and gave it up because I became tired of watching what I said so that I wouldn’t reveal the true identity of my friends and family. Everything is much more open since blogging came along but I realise that it’s just not in my nature to reveal too much of the inner me. However, I think if you can then it’s much healthier.

    Er, all of which is a very long-winded way of saying that I enjoy your writing precisely because of your honesty. I also think that sharing with others can be very helpful (even if I currently find it hard to follow my own wisdom)!

  2. Steven Harris

    I always come back to the honest bloggers. Especially when they call me cerebral ;)
    Seriously, though, it is a quite self-conscious thing at times, blogging. I have been told I am quite candid but there are plenty of details I leave out. Names, places and often times are either obscrued or left out entirely. Hopefully that way people know that what I am writing is not THE TRUTH in all it’s glory, but my truth. As do you.

  3. I love your blog–incomplete sentences and all! I’m sure you’ve noticed that I like incomplete sentences also…

    I think all bloggers struggle with that issue–wondering if you’re funny enough, or good enough, or private/public enough, or thoughtful enough…it can make you crazy, if you let it.

    I think you’re doing it best by staying true to who you are and being honest. Bravo.

    ps: I love Free to Be!

  4. Yes we all struggle with this, how honest should we be. For each of us it is a different answer so the struggle continues. I like your blog Jane. You walk the fine line of humor and honesty well.

  5. shaunaglenn

    I think you’re perfect just the way you are.

    xo

  6. What a great post! I am typically drawn to blogs that are ‘real’ – that talk about the messiness of life along with the good stuff, that are candid and honest, and who inspire my own writing. (And who don’t give their kids cutesy nicknames that I can’t remember . . . is Peanut the 18-year-old or is that Snook-Ums?)

    I struggle a lot with what a put out into the blogsphere, and have even gone so far as to shut one blog down and start another (though neither was anonymous.) I tend to put more out there because I don’t mind the judgement, and hope that maybe what I say will be helpful to someone else in my sitiuation (though that is easy to say because I have not gotten any hate mail.)

  7. Great post. I am new to blogging and feel the same way. What do you share? What is your specific voice. It is tough. There are so many talented people out there. Keep on posting and it will come!

  8. The more closed a blogger is, the less appealing their blog is to me. I’m not really interested in funny, intelligent, well written etc. I’m interested in something that is written from the heart. I’m also drawn to a blog where someone has a story to tell. Every day chit chat about a pet isn’t really my thing, but that doesn’t mean it’s bad, it’s just not my cuppa tea. Just as I am sure my blog isn’t to everyones taste.

  9. I am feelin’ the love! Thanks, everyone. I certainly didn’t mean for my post to come off as a pity party. Just sharing how I struggle with what to share, how much to share, how to share it. And then the self doubt that comes along with it. Plus, the post I’m sharing tomorrow (which, by and large, is just a normal everyday post) reveals something about myself that I’m not really proud of. And this post (that I’m finally getting the guts to share) sat in my queue for about 2 weeks. And that bothered me. One tiny paragraph, holding me back. It was as if I WASN’T willing to be human, show my dark side. I’m a perfectionist that isn’t perfect. Talk about an inner struggle! But it’s so good to hear that I’m not alone. That many of you struggle, too. AND (I’m so filled with warm fuzzies now!) the validation from you all is so appreciated. Blog World is sooooooo cool! I love it here!

  10. submom

    I struggle with how much to share and what to share too esp. since I do not have a mental filter. I know there are some subjects that if touched, will prevent me from becoming as wildly successful as my wildest dream allows, but hey, I’ve got to say what I’ve got to say. Otherwise I’d be missing the therapeutic purpose of having a blog. As cliche as this may sound: Thank goodness you are you and you decide to just be you. Perfection.

  11. I agree — if I read too many other blogs I just feel like crawling into a hole and pulling my little blog in behind me. I’m also fairly non-confrontational, so I’ve struggled with how much to say about what I really think. The great (and, admittedly not so great, at times) thing about blogging is there’s a place for every style and personality. And I’m getting closer to thinking that at some point it might be interesting to piss someone off :).

  12. Great post! I love your writing style and your honesty. I also struggle with how much to reveal. In the beginning I was too open, sharing my full name and a lot of revealing info that could get me into trouble at work. Now I am more careful but I still fear that my students will find my blog.

  13. You, offend?
    I think not.
    I am glad you are “just” going to be you.
    You rock.

    Now, could you tell me how to find these search words???
    Hey, thanks for the linky shout-out ( see? you really are the best)!

  14. I totally empahtize with you… I struggle with the same things. But then I realized that I don’t care what other people think of me. The best I can do is be honest and be myself. Hopefully, people will like me for who I am. I like YOU for who you are and I like what you write about!
    -Jen

  15. I love this post – and this blog – because it is real. It is you. You are not trying to be something you are not. The fact that you worry about what you are saying here and how you are saying it makes you authentic. All of us bloggers have inferiority complexes and rampant insecurities. It is all about insecurity. But how many of us are honest about that insecurity, willing to wade through it, stumbling, reaching, doubting out loud. Not too many. This is why I will keep coming back.

  16. I think your blog rocks! When I fall behind reading it, I kick myself as I catch up because I’m thinking how could I go a day without this.
    Besides it’s hard work being the straight man. And most of us need one; it’s why I married my husband.

  17. LisaF

    Your writings are refreshing, raw (sometimes) and very much human. I love the way you share your inner-most thoughts.

  18. I get a knot in my stomach just about every time I hit that publish button, so I understand how you feel. I think we all do at some point. But being honest is real. I like real. I try to be real. I always worry if someone will read what I wrote in the wrong way, with the wrong tone and wrong meaning. I have such worries over all that stuff that I am constantly debating whether to just chuck the whole thing! Keep writing and thanks for sharing. It’s good to know that other people struggle with the same issues. That’s what I like about your blog, because you aren’t afraid to be you.

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