I feel as if I'm stepping out of character, as I feel most of my blog posts are written in more of a journal format and don't address that this is a blog. I started my blog just to express my own thoughts into writing. I didn't really know how the whole process of having "followers" and "following" worked. In fact, Amanda G (who introduced me to blogging) had to explain to me how to use the "add a gadget" feature in order to gain followers. My goal was never to have a large following and I was fairly selective about the blogs included in my feed. I selected women who were about my age, or had similar fertility issues. I also chose women who were generally interesting, throughtful writers and seemed like someone I would befriend in real life. Over the years, I began to regard many fellow bloggers as actual friends. It started with exchanging Christmas cards, then becoming Facebook friends and communicating outside of the blogsphere.
Much like relationship in real life, there have been times when some bloggers come and go. I know many women struggle with what to do with their infertility blog once they become pregnant. During my own pregnancy, I tried to convey the infertility perspective in my updates. I know other bloggers have noted that it seemed easier to write during the dark days of infertility struggles. Posts following a failed cycle practically wrote themselves. If I were really dry for topics, I just had to talk to Myrtle and she'd inspire at least three posts. (she's continued to make a few insensitive remarks, so watch this space...) Recently, I've noted a few of my favourite bloggers have resisted becoming "another mommy blogger".
You are not just another mommy blogger. Over these years we have felt your heartache and pain during your journey. We've cheered each cycle, held our breaths during the 2WW and kept our fingers crossed until the first ultrasound. Beyond infertility, we celebrated your accomplishments at work, travelled with you on vacation and enjoyed the glimpse into your life. Those of us who were IVF virgins relied on the wisdom of the veterans who could lead us through PIO injections and the stress of fertilization reports. We formed a community, a virtual network of support.
Now, perhaps more than ever, we still need that community. Unfortunately, it's not as simple as 'finally have a rainbow baby and live happily ever after!'. Well, hopefully live happily ever after, but as we all know that's not achieved without a lot of work and there still are some difficult times. I know it's harder for Infertility and Pregnancy Loss survivors to complain about the more difficult aspects of motherhood. Perhaps that's why I still feel that I need support from this community. I still fear fertiles could look at me and claim 'well you should have known what you were getting into before you went through the lengths you did!' Your advice is so valuable and your voices are the ones I trust most. I must have read Amanda's post about having a spirited baby almost a hundred times while Jate was in her fussy phase. As she wrote the words, "think of this as a fist bump, a 'solidarity sister', and a hug," it felt tangible.
I know when I was dealing with a pregnancy loss or failed cycle, I skipped reading many X months updates. I felt as if I didn't have anything interesting to contribute in my comments and it was hard to read about something that seemed so far out of my grasp. Now I'm looking through your archives and am taking notes. That's the beauty of a virtual community. You can check in and check out as you please. Just please keep the music going. I can understand if you are too busy to keep writing, or if you've lost interest. Just please don't stop out of fear for the 'another mommy blogger' label. You're not just a mommy blogger. Just as you were so much more than your infertility.