Whoa there's a big debate going on over at making time about 'craft blogs as a domestic fantasy'. Green kitchen has blogged about it too and I think it might have started with a rant from this blogger. The gist of it is that some people are wondering how the stay-at-home craft bloggers have time for making things, running a home, looking after their children, having a blog and having a relationship with their husband too! The other debate going on is whether bloggers should reveal more of themselves ie personal stuff? Are they/we just projecting some sort of domestic fantasy?
It's certainly made me think about why I blog and what I decide to say each time. For me having a blog is about being part of a community. It replaces sitting around a table with a group of women and talking and sewing. I've been at home for over twelve years now and a few years ago I discovered that I could sew and knit and make things. So I started. At first I'd make things when the children went to bed even if it meant staying up till midnight. The sense of satisfaction that I got was great.
But I was lonely too. Not all my friends made things and even if they did our time together was limited. Then I discovered a whole crafting community through blogs that was available all day and night. Having a blog has done so much for me. It's a place that I can share ideas, give and receive feedback, be inspired and connect with other women all over the world. It's also something that I do for myself. But having a blog I've noticed, is not like sitting around the kitchen table where you know each other and can share all your intimacies if you want to. It doesn't have that safety net and I'm always conscious of how much I want to reveal about myself and my family to people I don't know. Having said that though I have made friends through the blog and flickr and they have taken place via e-mail and skype where I feel I can be more intimate. The other thing I wonder is, do people really want to know that you've argued with your husband, or that you ate too much chocolate yesterday or that you shouted at the children again? Maybe they do. I don't know.
So I suppose I just end up showing you one side of me - the crafting side. But some of you might be wondering how I get to do so much. A friend of my sisters' asked her ironically if I was on speed - I love that one (just think what I could acheive if I was!). The answer is that I don't find time for everything and some things just don't happen - I don't watch telly, I hardly go out in the evenings or clean my house much or spend hours cooking anymore. I have just the same amount of time that you have in the day but I chose to use it differently and it's where I am at this point in my life. I need ME time and I need it in this way.
Finally, I'm going to stick my neck out and say that I think a lot of this has to do with the perfect/earth mother syndrome. So many of us feel that we should be the perfect mother whatever that is. Maybe it's someone that cooks, bakes, makes preserves, sews, knits, does things with the children, the list is endless. Sadly, most of us don't think we're IT. But we're scared that other women are because it shows us up, makes us feel inadequate. We don't mean to be jealous but we are and instead of admitting it we criticise and look for ways to attack each other. But ofcourse no-one is the perfect Mum, no-one ever was, we're all the same, we just do things differently and excel at different things and we should accept that and stop comparing ourselves. I've had friends in my house who run public groups, are brillaint musicians, fundraise or whatever but as soon as they see a doll that I made or a homebaked pie they start criticising themselves or worse, me - in the vein of 'do you ever rest, you're always at it'. I suffer from this too. I compare myself and the stuff I've made and how I spend my time.
I think it's time to stop and connect with each other on a soul level......................