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random thoughts on blogging

14 Random Thoughts On Blogging

As I mentioned in my previous post, I have been wearing my blogger’s hat now for five years. This post is #424. When I started this blogging gig, I was in the midst of chemo, probably not the best time to start a blog, or maybe it’s the perfect time… I certainly had no idea I would end up having so much to say about breast cancer and loss. Who knew? 

I’m still an educator at heart, so I guess it makes perfect sense I started blogging at the beginning of a new school year. As we move into the ‘new year’ again, I thought it might be fun to share some random thoughts about blogging. Sometimes I just love being random, don’t you?

  1. Writing of any kind, including blogging, is risky. You put yourself out there and sometimes this creates uncomfortable-ness. Feeling vulnerable is a feeling most bloggers know quite well.
  2. Having said this, the risk is very much worth it because the rewards are great.
  3. The biggest reward by far for me is the community I have come to know, respect and love. As a whole, breast cancer bloggers and blog readers are a very welcoming, non-judgmental and forgiving lot. And realizing you are not alone in whatever it is you are dealing with, well, you just can’t beat that.
  4. Sometimes you pour your heart and soul into a post and you do not get the response you expected.
  5. Sometimes you pour your heart and soul into a post and you DO get a response like you NEVER expected.
  6. So you just never know what may or may not strike a chord with readers. Challenging, yes, but keeps me on my toes I guess.
  7. I consider many of my blogging pals (including readers) to be friends. Real friends.
  8. Working from behind a keyboard works out great for this introvert.
  9. I learn stuff every single day.
  10. I hate cancer and I REFUSE to pretty it up on my blog. REFUSE!
  11. Related to #10 I suppose, somewhere along the line I got a bit rebellious and morphed into some sort of advocate and this still surprises me sometimes.
  12. Blogging and reading blogs is addictive. I have no idea how many I read. I should create a system of some sort, but as you may or may not know, I’m basically very unorganized…
  13. I also have no idea how long I’ll keep blogging. I have a whole notebook full of ideas. Finding time to write about them is what holds me back. And being unorganized doesn’t help either.
  14. I don’t want to keep blogging too long though, ‘cuz who wants to become that old worn out blogger who merely keeps repeating herself?

My friend Jody of women with cancer once told me, “Keep at it (blogging) as long as it feeds your soul.”

That’s what I intend to do.

Thank you for hanging around with me as we enter another ‘new year’ at Nancy’s Point. 

What sort of posts interest you most – personal experience, loss/grief-related, information sharing, advocacy, rants, guest posts, reviews, or some other?

Share a random thought or two about blogging or reading blogs if you want to (and I hope you do). Feel free to share your blog link if you have a blog.

I guess this could be another one of those blogging challenges (14 random thoughts on blogging) – hint, hint…

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random thoughts on blogging

 

17 thoughts on “14 Random Thoughts On Blogging

  1. Thanks for writing this. I’ve attempted to blog many times before but failed after just a few posts. I’ve never kept a diary or journal except for school when I was required to. This is all so new for me but I love it. I really love it. Numbers 3, 4, 5, 7 and 10 really resonate for me. Sometimes I write something and think I’ll get a huge response (huge for my small readership) and it doesn’t happen then something else that maybe isn’t as big or vulnerable for me will connect with others. I also love the people I have met and am meeting through blogging and hope to get to know people more. As for number 10, I vowed at the beginning of this process to honor the place I was at. For a time, that was really positive. I had the fighting spirit. But lately I’ve been really angry and depressed and that has come through in my writing. It’s not as fun to read but it’s real. People should know that this happens during the survivorship phase. I will not pretty this phase up. It wouldn’t be fair, I don’t think.

    1. Carrie, Blogging can be challenging for a lot of reasons that’s for sure. I hope you stick with it, especially if you are loving it. I think it’s very important to honor the place you are at. That’s quite a profound statement. It’s all about being real and connecting with others. Prettying things up too much hinders genuine healing and it’s definitely not fair. You’re right. Thank you for sharing some thoughts.

  2. Nice list Nancy, think I’ll try tonight to make a list.
    Funny but even though I see my medical team face to face (though not very often) they don’t give me any hope at all. Most of their “person” is a machine-like presentation of policy and procedure. Sometimes I imagine looking sideways through the eye holes in their mask and seeing a person inside but they never appear. If I feel bad, they are angry that their phoniness and mechanical care isn’t appreciated. Think I blog to reclaim myself from their indifference. And of course the support of the blogging community is very important.

    1. Scott, I’m sorry your medical team comes across as so phony and mechanical. No wonder you turn to blogging in order to reclaim yourself and to find community and support. I wouldn’t settle though. You have every right to feel validated. I hope your concerns can be properly addressed.

  3. Nancy, I never thought I would enjoy blogging because I admit, I am not so disciplined. Blogging has turn into something special for me. I no longer worry about sharing my cancer story. I also feel the need to speak up about the cancerland culture most of us dislike so much — the more voices the better.

    Like you, I enjoy reading other blogs, especially those about cancer because I can relate so much. Here’s my only issue though, I care too much and sometimes certain posts I read by other bloggers affect me (specifically by stage 4 patients). I wish everyone was doing well health-wise. But I can’t walk away. I consider those who have been affected by cancer like a family — we’ve built strong connections.

    You mentioned two important words: non-judgmental and forgiving. Two of the reasons I love our community.

    I also enjoy reading blogs about grief, inspirational stories — those people who do unusual things — and reviews.

    Now you got me thinking about this new challenge — one of the many reasons I enjoy reading your blog.

    1. Rebecca, You’re right, we do build strong connections and it is hard to hear when people we’ve come to care about are struggling and some even die. It’s happened too many times. But we are all in this together and this is exactly why every voice matters. Thank you for being part of this community and thank you for reading this post.

  4. Hi Nancy,

    I doubt you would ever become a worn out blogger who keeps repeating herself. Your blogs are always interesting. Regarding point 11, I think as people, we evolve over time. So I totally get how your blog morphed into the advocacy arena. My blog has also evolved. How I think is so different than how I thought 5 years ago.

    Even if you get to the point where you don’t want to blog about breast cancer and loss anymore, you can always blog about other topics. Your work is so good, people will continue to read it. That’s what I’m planning to do at some point. I also have lots to say, but I don’t just want to write on cancer. I want to write about other topics, too.

    Great post, Nancy, and keep writing!

    1. Beth, You’re always so kind. Every person evolves over time, so of course, their writing evolves too. Some of my early blog posts are hard for me to even read now, but I haven’t edited them because I think it’s important for me to see how I’ve evolved and I don’t just mean in my writing style, but even in how I looked at my cancer. I do sometimes write about other topics and more than likely will continue to do that when the mood strikes me. Thank you for always being so supportive, Beth.

  5. I hope you’ll still be blogging in five years time Nancy because you share thoughts, information and sentiments that are always helpful, thought-provoking, uplifting or simply say ‘you’re not alone’ which is essential for anyone going through a tough time – cancer related or otherwise. Though I wish we hadn’t been thrown together through cancer and loss, I’m still glad I found your blog 🙂

  6. As you say, writing is risky– especially when we’re putting ourselves out there in very personal ways, such as by writing about our breasts! But I agree, it’s been so worth it because as I’ve opened myself up in my blog posts, people have opened up to me in ways I never would have expected… and people whom I never would have expected to open up, period, have shown whole new sides of themselves. It’s been rather miraculous. Even though I still get a bit nervous every time I press “post” (especially when I’m writing about, say, nipple reconstruction and imagining my father-in-law reading all about it!), I am so glad I’ve taken the risk and, as a result, formed new, unexpected, wonderful connections online and in person.

    Thanks, Nancy, for once again sharing your thoughts and getting me thinking!

    1. Jenny, Yes, sometimes I can’t believe that I’ve shared such personal things online and now I’ve got this book coming out too… Yikes! In addition to being risky, it’s also rather freeing though, don’t you think? Not that many of my relatives read my blog these days. At least I don’t think so anyway. If they do, they are very quiet about it! And you’re so right about the amazing and wonderful people we ‘meet’ here. The community is just wonderful. Thank you for reading and sharing some thoughts. Keep writing!

  7. This one really struck a nerve for me because I constantly question why I blog, do I call myself a “cancer blogger”, advocacy and a whole host of topics I’ve been writing drafts about. But especially the issue of repeating myself. To some extent, that cannot be helped because the culture has not changed. This has frustrated me greatly–so many women have written great critiques of the image of breast cancer as a sexy party, yet that image persists. I am not a patient person, and the small baby steps forward (like the recent race I wrote about with the tagline “a fun event for a serious cause” which I took as progress) have left me unsatisfied.
    But it is a comfort to see you still putting yourself out there. So I hope you are able to keep at it for a long, long time!

    1. CC, I know what you mean about the repeating myself part. Sometimes I do wonder how many ways we can say some of this stuff. Progress is painfully slow, I agree. And a few giant steps would sure be nice once in a while. Readers and bloggers like you keep me going. So thank you for your ongoing support. I hope you keep blogging with your unique voice as well.

  8. Hi, Nancy, I just discovered your blog. I look forward to going back and reading some of your past posts. I also recently started a blog, and I am finding it good for me to write about things that are important to me. Even if nobody reads them, it’s worth it to me anyway just for my own satisfaction. I haven’t done any writing in years, so I have found it good for my brain. I, too, have had breast cancer. I am about 14 months post diagnosis and about to finish Herceptin treatment. I hope to get my port out by the end of December and maybe then I won’t feel like a cancer “patient” anymore. Thanks again for sharing your thoughts with us. Many blessings to you. 🙂

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