A Blog Manifesto

In the blogging world, it is so so easy to just get caught up in what everyone else is doing. There are so many people doing so many things and often they are so similar, that it's easy to forget why you started. Sometimes I find myself wanting to write about the most recent makeup palette even though I'm extremely aware that that's not who I am. I don't want to write product reviews all of the time, I want to open discussions and explain my views and hear other people's views. I want to learn new words and find new ways to say things. 

We used to joke in my house quite frequently about how I’m going to become a famous blogger and then we’re all going to go and live in notting hill. That’s the dream. Of course that’s the dream, but I’m not doing it for that. I don’t really want to be famous because I don’t look that great without makeup on and I quite like going to uni wearing leggings and a jumper, and I don't want to turn my blog into what I know I would have to turn my blog into, in order to become that. 

I write, that's how I process things. That’s always, always been the case. About 15%, in a good week, of what I write ends up here. Sometimes there are lucky recipients of text messages,  sometimes iPhone notes will do.

When I was at school I would just sit writing what seemed to be nothing, and somehow still paying attention to what was being said, because I physically cannot only think about one thing at a time. It occurred to me at some point while I was still at school, that what I had to say might, at best, prove to someone that they weren’t on their own in ‘ok so growing up and being at a girls school is more complicated than anyone ever warned me it would be'. Or gain me some sort of cult internet following. Either of which, was fine, according to my 15 year old self. Not such a fan of the cult internet following idea now, nor is the former plan my sole purpose. Though, whatever works, I guess. 

There have been several blogs since then. More tumblr accounts, a blogspot account where you could find me ranting entirely about musical theatre (and not even in a well written way, ew), another blogspot account where you could find me ranting entirely about life (which I never gave anyone the link for? What was the point, I hear you ask. Great question), and then when I got really excited about life/Jesus/everything, came this. Which didn’t start out like this at all. 

I seem to have taken a ‘wearing my heart on my sleeve while trying to avoid excessive emotion’ approach. That’s the best way I can put it. I’ve wondered whether or not put my heart on the internet, so to speak, for a while now. In the past, I’ve tried to be as honest as possible without people freaking out and thinking I wanted attention. Which I do not, for the record. Sometimes I have to remind myself of that. I’m super open with basically everyone around me and if anything it’s the attention that sometimes stops me wanting to carry on being that person. Sure, when my hair and makeup are done I want people to tell me I look great, but vanity and the depths of my heart are very different things, you know? This became chatty quickly, didn’t it.

I tried really hard for a while to portray some kind of 'look, life can be really hard and everything but look it's wonderful really’ image. I do still think that, with all my heart I believe that it's amazing if we look at it properly. But that is a huge 'if'. 

There comes a point where authenticity and honesty is more important than holding onto your pride. Failing to mention the fact that I accidentally acquired a weird mix of depression/anxiety and ended up on anti depressants, and that a year and a half later I'm still taking them, would be to completely undermine the truth in what I write. It would make everything I said two dimensional; not because you have to have depression to have a third dimension, but because I do - that is part of my emotional state. Ignoring the way that that affects me would also fuel the idea that we shouldn’t talk about it. That it shouldn’t have happened. Damn straight, it shouldn’t have happened, but I don’t get to make that decision. So we work with what we’ve got, because while I maintain that we shouldn’t be normalising these situations, it goes against everything in me to put across the idea that there should be some kind of secrecy and lack of political correctness surrounding them. Equally, I’m not about to change the entire direction of everything/stop writing about musicals/food/Jesus/the education system/getting on my high horse and giving my opinion on things for which I am only half qualified. 

So here’s what I’m aiming for. To share what I’m excited about. To share truth, when I realise it. To share truth even if I don’t feel like I’m ever going to realise it again. To share the things I love. To just not mention the things that I hate unless I really think they’re worth talking about. (Like the protein world advert, because that was important). To share what I've learned, and to give my opinion, when it actually matters, and to steer clear of giving my opinion when it doesn’t matter. 

Perhaps mainly, to process. Honestly, writing things in a coherent enough manner to be publicised for actual other people to actually read, is the best way to make them make sense. It makes me so, so rational. Which is impressive. to say the least.