When I say, “I’m a blogger,” what am I really saying? That I have a blog? That I have X number of followers? That I post Y times a week? That I make money from it?
There are all sorts of definitions you could attach to the label, but to me, being a blogger means being a part of a community. That’s the biggest thing. It means that I spend time reading blogs, commenting on blogs, replying to comments on my own blog, sharing links I’ve enjoyed, joining in blogging events… it means engaging with other people. Writing and publishing my own posts is honestly the least important part of it.
Yes, I like writing. I like hashing out my thoughts and feelings and then putting it all out there. But I like the community more.
Which is why I’m really struggling with my place as a blogger now. In a couple months, I’m not going to be able to engage with other bloggers the way I have in the past. I’ve already been pulling back.
When I first found out I was pregnant, one of the first things I started doing was stepping down from various online responsibilities. It was a relief at first (and it still is) not to have people counting on me when I know I don’t have that extra effort to give… but it also means that I’m not interacting in the community as much. Because as much as it’s something I want to do on my own, it’s nice to have that extra push to make sure I make the time. Now I don’t have that push.
So the past couple months, I’ve been slacking. It’s been harder and harder for me to engage; even when I enjoy a post, I struggle to comment. And I used to be really good about sharing other bloggers’ posts, which is a great way to show support even if I don’t leave a comment myself… and then I fell out of the habit of doing even that.
I know that I don’t have an obligation to anyone to do anything, especially when I’m in the middle of a huge life-altering event. But if I’m not a part of the community… then why am I even here?
Why are you here? What is it that you get out of the blogosphere, whether it’s as a writer or a reader or both?