Calling it What It Is


There's no sense in pointing out that I've been long absent from my blog. Just comparing the number of annual posts from 2009 until today will tell you that.

Yesterday, the words "Absentee Landlord" came across my screen in a context that had nothing to do with me or my blog, it was an entirely different subject altogether. But this morning it struck a chord with me because that's what I've been to this blog. I check in, make sure it all still looks good and is functioning and then I leave. No added entries, no improved features, nothing. Just drop in, check and then I'm gone.

But there's a reason I've been this way for so long. There's this rough patch that every blogger is required to go through, it seems; a patch that many of us call The Personal Attacks. 

Many times these attacks come from individuals we don't know.  Like the anonymous comment I got a few years ago asking What's In It For The Man?  I have some ideas about who he may be, but ultimately, he's a name on a screen that has absolutely no role in my life.

But sometimes these attacks are from people you know "in real life" (IRL).  In what I've viewed from the experiences of other bloggers, they're often from family, friends or acquaintances who get upset because they have you neatly tucked in this little cookie-cutter mold of who they think you are and therefore expect you to be.  So if you don't fit in their little mold for you...well, the attacks begin.  And they think that it's nobody's fault but your own; shame on you for being your own person and not fitting into their expectations for you.

Not only do they not understand you, they don't understand the concept of blogging and what it is to those of us who do it.

When you start blogging the whole blogosphere opens their arms to you and welcomes you to their community and encourages you and helps you in any way possible. That's why blogging is so addicting. 

As time goes on, you get more comfortable with yourself, your writing and your blog so you start to share it with people you know "in real life". Of course, I did this as well. And since I have a great family and a great network in the community I was living in, I was met with more support and encouragement and a wider audience (which every blogger secretly craves, whether they'll admit it or not). That was the time that I felt like I was the most comfortable writing.

And then came along Mystery Man (now husband, Jason). And eventually I let him read my blogs, too. Even the MySpace blogs where my bitterness from my previous relationship seeped through every entry.  It was hard to let go and let this man--who I only wanted to see the best in me--see me at one of my lowest and most embarassing times. And he read through them all if I remember correctly.

That's how you can tell about a person's true feelings. Jason read through my blogs because he loved me and he wanted to know more about me and he wanted to see how my mind worked and how my past had brought me to the present that he loved very much. You can tell how a person really feels about you by what they draw out of your writing, especially your most vulnerable of entries.

And that's where my silence has come from. Because several individuals I'm acquainted with poured through my blog looking for secrets and reasons to despise and degrade me. They used it to mock and make fun of me and they also used my blog as an excuse that my life should be public property. Open for investigation.

Because if I make some or most of my life public to them, they assume that they have every right to know my private matters as well, they have every right to demand knowledge of me that they really and truly have no right to. And they used my life (yes, readers, we blog about our lives so when you make fun of our blogs and our writings, you're making fun of our lives) to poke fun and mock and make fun of me.

Even--quite tackily--to my face in a few instances.

Pettiness, jealousy, childishness, selfishness....I don't know where it came from.  But it cast a shadow over this place for me.  What I previously experienced as a bright, whimsical, almost perfect place for me to be me (thus the previous more-lighthearted layout) has now become dull and gray and overcast.  And maybe that's, subconsciously, why I switched to the new layout.  Not so it would look cleaner...maybe I just needed it to fit how I currently feel about it.

But that needs to change.  So my options are that I can either call it quits or I can call out my persecutors if necessary.  (And so help me, I will.  I don't want to ever again be that person that airs out events and misdeeds and private disagreements, but I will if it become necessary because I have kept my nose clean.)

So I will resume writing and, if I have to I will write it all because I am not a victim, I am a blogger.
Ashley Wife & Mom

Ashley is a thirty-something wife and mother of two boys. She enjoys spending time with her family, as well as reading and decorating their home. Her blogging adventures began in 2006 as a single mother and have carried on through marriage and a new life with a husband, a ten-year-old, and an infant.

Tyisms: Good Answer


Ty and I were play fighting this morning and in slow motion I acted like I was hitting him in the jaw.

Ty then reached over and pinched my belly and I asked him (acting like I was offended) asked him if he just pinched my fat.

He paused for a second and I could tell he was trying to figure out what to say. Finally he said, "No, I pinched your belly."

"Good answer!" I told him, proudly.

"Cause I'm not supposed to tell you you're fat, am I Mama?"
Ashley Wife & Mom

Ashley is a thirty-something wife and mother of two boys. She enjoys spending time with her family, as well as reading and decorating their home. Her blogging adventures began in 2006 as a single mother and have carried on through marriage and a new life with a husband, a ten-year-old, and an infant.