“Sometimes, I sit down to write something and think I’m going one way, then I get done and went somewhere totally unexpected. Then I realize, I don’t know where it came from, but it’s obviously something I needed to say.” – A Girl
As a blogger, I basically live my life online. It’s easy to say that I’m anonymous so that must mean that I hold some things close to my chest… maybe I do a little bit. But the reality is that, as a blogger, my whole life is on display. Everything. The good, the bad, the weird, the unfortunate, and definitely the ugly.
It also means that this is personal for me. I am sharing my personal life with you. I am telling you the secrets that the people in my real life never get to hear. I share my fears with you, the ones that I would be afraid to tell my psychiatrist, let alone someone I had to see regularly. I share all of this and many of you keep coming back.
That means that, unlike having word vomit at a party full of strangers, I share my life with you, the good, the bad, the weird, and (unfortunately) the ugly, and have to live to face you again tomorrow.
I write for a lot of reasons. I write because I always have. I write to process my world. I write simply because I woke up today and had something obnoxious to say. I write to laugh at myself so that I don’t have to feel so terrible sometimes. Sometimes, I write to laugh at myself because laughing at yourself, even if you don’t truly mean it, gives you a leg up on those who might point and laugh at you first.
But it all amounts to the same thing: As a blogger, I live my life online.
I share my daily thoughts and follies on Twitter and Facebook with all of those who follow along. I post conveniently created pictures of my ridiculous life on Pinterest to drive traffic to the tragically funny life I have displayed on my blog. And I email with readers, I comment back when they comment, and I interact in a million different ways with a public that amounts to being strangers I’ve never seen, but have grown to know and consider friends.
BUT, living a life online opens you up to ridicule. It’s one of those silly little things that many bloggers don’t think about. I sure didn’t. So imagine the surprise and pain I felt the first time I was attacked for simply being me. I have not grown a thicker skin over time, just gotten better at laughing faster at myself to diffuse the voraciousness of laughter pointed at me.
The danger of being a blogger who blogs about her life is that, when you are laughing at me, you are laughing at ME. The real Me. The Me who I am when no one else is looking. The Me I get to be by being anonymous. The Me I get to be when I sing in the shower or when I cry in secret, hidden in my bedroom.
I am snarky, bratty, snotty, and sarcastic. Someone described me to their followers as “snarktastic” recently, and I felt that was the best description ever. But behind that sass is a very real person who is really laying her life out for you.
And while I understand that I have opened myself up to whatever may come at me by blogging, I’m still sad to think that there are those who are so quick to forget that bloggers are real people. We are a mixture of self and persona. We are an amalgam of who we want to be and who we really are. We are a finely tuned balance of real life and whimsy, and we are humans who make mistakes, laugh at the wrong time and say the wrong thing (some more than others *ahem* me).
A life lived online can be both wonderful and horrible. I have made some of the best friends of my life through my blog. I consider pretty much anyone who reads a potential friend; heck, you know all my dark secrets anyway. And really, if you can love the person you read about here, and like her at the end of the day, then you are mountains away from how I feel at any given moment about who I am sometimes. And really, while I want to pretend that who I am when I write is this mythical girl who is amazing, she’s really just a klutzy, socially clumsy girl, who encourages you all to laugh at her so it won’t hurt so much when you do.