Thursday, December 8, 2016

From Despair to Don't Care: A Hello

Once upon a time I tried to make it as a blogger, whatever make it means. More comments, some notoriety, increasing page views, site visits, a little money or maybe a lot, maybe a wee bit of fame in a world of www.famewhoring.com. But I didn’t make it. Instead I got a job job, and I continued to write because I like to write. Maybe not as much, certainly. My posts went from everyday to once a week, then maybe once every few weeks. But I continued to write, thinking maybe one day my children will read this and know me, not just as their mom, but as a 37-44 year old woman going through life in all of its delicate, durable life-y-ness, bad language, muddied musings, mistakes and all.

That is why I still write here. Because I like to write. What I don’t like is dealing with people that are unkind. People that are small-minded, bigoted, people who are looking to fight, or looking to sell viagra and cigarettes, people who turn a comment about diapers into an inexplicable Penthouse letter. Yes, I’ve had all of those comments, and worse (just check out the comments on the post below, although I regret to inform you I deleted the diaper p0rn).

Here’s the thing, and I don’t think it’s a popular notion in the world of blogging (which may or may not be deader than a blog about doornails)--but I don’t owe anybody anything. By blogging, I don’t owe anyone any explanations. Nor am I obligated to publish nasty comments. This is my blog. My tiny, little blog with a small readership that makes no money.

Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE it when people read my blog. I LOVE it when people comment, either here or on my Facebook page, or when I meet people who mention my blog. I have met some amazing people through blogging, and by “met” I mean I know their username and I am so glad to have them in my life. Maybe that’s how you make it as a blogger? By meeting new friends.

Which reminds me...lately I’ve taken to asking Ozzy each night if he had done anything kind for anyone that day. At first he didn’t know how to respond. Um, no? I don’t know? But I told him that I was sure he was doing kind things all the time. Sharing a toy, or helping a friend, those are the obvious ones, but also asking someone if they want to play, or just saying hi to someone. Ozzy is famous for saying hi, and saying it loudly. HI MATTEO! he shouts as we walk across the blacktop, HI OLIVIA, HI LEON, HI MAXIMUS! Now Ozzy has something to talk about every night before he goes to bed. It’s nice to end the day talking about kindness.

So I will end this with just that. I have thought about quitting this blog because I don’t have enough time and not a lot of people read it anymore and there are so many mean people out there and and and... But I won’t. Instead I will just do this. Because I like to write. Simply. HI.

Xo,
S

48 comments:

Jen said...

Hi!

priscilla said...

Hi back!. I know many of us would be dissapointed if you left.

Anonymous said...

You're an amazing writer with a unique style and point of view. Thanks for writing - it's very much appreciated!

Allison C said...

Please don't quit! I love your blog and I'm always excited for a new post. Wth is diaper porn? I am so confused, but perhaps it's better that way. :)

Ali said...

Oh darling. I skim through my Feedly every day deciding which blog posts to read -depending on my mood. But not yours. Never yours. I click every time. I read your brillant words and admire your spirit, your parenting style, your wit and your beauty. You are magnificent. Please continue writing. I will continue reading. xo

Diane said...

I love your blog and it delights me when i see you have a fresh post. don't worry about the distance between them.
it has been interesting over the past 10 years, watching some bloggers hit it big. they started out same as you, then suddenly they have a staff of 10 people!?!? but there are plenty of people who just like to share their words and pictures and don't need to make money from it. and we your readers are recipients of your talents.

Michele Ryan said...

I LOVE reading anything and everything you write and I have for a very long time. I am always excited when a new post comes up on my Feedly. Thank you for continuing to share your gift with the rest of us. Also, I love the thought of talking with our families about one kind thing we each did that day. Thank you for sharing that! Much love to you and yours! XOXO

Rosalie said...

You better not ever stop. Ever. Till the kids are having kids. Then, Ok, maybe.

Petunia Face said...

Thank you all. Seriously.

And the diaper comment--well, wow. Let's just say it was about an adult wearing a diaper during sexy time. It was...interesting.

Erin said...

Way back when, one of your readers posted a comment about how they hit 'refresh' several times a day because they couldn't wait for your daily post. I was doing the same thing! I continue to do the happy dance when I see that you've posted something new. You have a gift.... thanks for writing!!

Richie Designs said...

I'm still here!

SH said...

And here I thought, based on your title, you were going to talk about the election. Because I can't even bring myself to care about what he is doing, which is really, really bad.

Stacey said...

don't give up...am reading your first post and love it!

Petunia Face said...

Ahhhh! I love you guys. Thank you. Last week I had a commenter tell me to stop writing, that it is a crap blog that no one is reading. So thank you all for getting that bad taste out of my mouth.

<3

Kirsten @Apothecasf.com said...

I'm so glad you keep doing this thing. Yours is some of the best writing on the internet, and why you haven't had a book published yet is beyond me.
~ Ol' Nay Kay

Geli said...

I've been reading you for years and and after the last fiasco here I thought you might
decide to quit. I am delighted that you'll continue writing, you're a very gifted writer and
there are so many readers who rarely comment but always read your blog posts -
so you do have a loyal following crowd. Haters will be haters, let's just kill them with
kindness until they squirm.
About that book Kirsten above mentioned.......you should think about it, really!

Kelly said...

Another long-time reader who's really glad you're not packing up. (Got a little worried considering the initial tone.) I had really loved your previous post & read it early, before the shitstorm of Anon & Co. Keep on Truckin'.

brenaugusta said...

So glad you decided to stay. I rarely comment but I agree with the others when I say I get excited when you have a new post. You have a great sense of humor and I think we should all try to be kinder to one another.

kate said...

you're my favorite blogger.

Anonymous said...

Keep writing please.

Anonymous said...

Please don't stop writing. It was your writing style I feel in love with.. it has a cadence I love. I write like this also. It's also relevant and heartfelt. I've read you for years. I hope to read to fit many more.

jessie said...

Thank you!

Jenny said...

I have been reading and enjoying your blog for YEARS, and I think I've only commented one other time, which is selfish and terrible (and maybe a little creepy?), but also means that you have more fans than you know. You're one of the best writers out there, don't let anyone tell you otherwise!!!

Anonymous said...

Love all your stuff..so damn good! You're talented, you have a unique voice. I always check to see if there is anything new. I don't mind the wait...it's worth it!

Tracey said...

Hi! I've been reading since we had babycenter April 2006 girls! I love to read your blog even if it's sporadic random thoughts! I like the kindness question.

Robin said...

Hi Petunia Face! Thanks to Feedly, I read the few blogs I still follow on the app and never click thru, thus missing the comments section entirely. This post made me curious so I fell down the rabbit hole and read all the comments on your previous post. Wow!
I've always admired your writing and your love for your family and your bravery during your MS diagnosis and treatment and your incredible vulnerability when you lost your mom. Add this to the list: your graceful handling of some crazy and cruel comments. You're right, you don't owe your readers anything; you freely give your incredible gift with words and share your life and insights. I'm thrilled Erin shared your blog with me back when you first started, and I'll cheer for you and appreciate you as long as you choose to write!
-Robin (in Denver)

Gabrielle said...

Please pinky swear that you will not stop writing your blog. You so perfectly state absolutely everything. Thanks to you and your blog though, I still can't shake the words to "pink fluffy unicorns dancing on rainbows." šŸŒˆ

Anonymous said...

Please keep writing! Seems there are so few blogs anymore and yours is one of the best, and what a gift it will be to your kids someday. I have been a reader for years and I think even emailed with you at one point (my name is Erin). I was one of the first "anonymous" comments on the previous post, about my daughter crying at the election results, which I posted in part because I didn't feel I could share honestly on my personal Facebook page. Your blog gave me some anonymity, and I was hoping, maybe some support. I did feel that, from you and others, but I also felt attacked! It gave me some empathy for what you might go through -- putting your precious words and feelings out for anyone to read and respond at will. But your words are beautiful, and needed. Please continue. (Oh, and obviously, I didn't stay off the Internet long. :) And, I apologize to you, as part of me feels like that first response to my comment emboldened many of those cruel commenters on the last post. I am heartbroken that we can no longer talk politics with maturity and kindness.) Be well, Susannah, and enjoy this holiday season.

Petunia Face said...

Hi Anonymous Erin! Please don't feel like you have to apologize to me. I loved your comment, all of them, and I'm just sorry you felt attacked. I support you and feel your pain, over the election, and the mean comments. Hugs to you!

marni said...

Never read the comments. Only read your wonderful prose which I await, daily, with baited breath.

Marisa said...

I seem to recall a story you once shared about your mom--one that has stayed with me because of its mystery and power, its wisdom and simplicity. You wrote that, near the end of your mom's battle with cancer, after days of not eating or speaking, she turned to you one morning or afternoon and whispered a single, unmistakable word: "Kindness."

As you may or may not know, your mom meant the world to me. She gave me her heart, a treasure chest of unconditional love, and in so doing helped me heal from addiction and self-destructive madness. I am alive today in part because of her. Whenever I stumble or falter in this life, I often stop to ask myself the following question: "What would Judy do?" She continues to guide me, even now, when I can only see her and hug her and laugh with her in dreams.

I know you don't need to hear it from me, but I'll say it anyway: Your mom would be so proud of you for your courage and perseverance--your refusal to back down in the face of cyberbullies and MS and our new president-elect. You have her fire and her strength, her intelligence and her wit--and, at the same time, you are a woman all your own.

Good for you for continuing to write here, in this magical space you have created and nurtured with your words.

What would Judy do?

Exactly the same thing. With kindness, and bravery, and indestructible love.

With respect,
Marisa

solo roving said...

i love your blog - you are witty, intelligent, passionate & sincere.

solo roving said...

i love your blog - you are witty, intelligent, passionate & sincere.

Gennifer said...

I am one of those who rarely (never?) comment but always read your posts. I love love love your blog. Please never stop writing.

Connie Coleman said...

Loyal reader here! I check your blog every day hoping to read something that you wrote.

Keep blogging!!

~Connie

Anonymous said...

Love your blog! Glad you are not quitting! I am looking forward to Zoey and Ozzie's annual picture in the front of the Christmas tree!

Buff said...

Please never stop writing! Your blog is the most authentic one out there, my favorite by far...you writing is so dang funny and poignant. Merry Christmas!

Caiti said...

Another April 2006 mommy that has been a loyal reader though not a consistent commenter. Glad you are sticking around.
Your voice is worthy and appreciated.

Anonymous said...

Elise here. I love your writing and your blog. You are an amazing writer, and I'm sorry you haven't made any money from it. If you added a donation button I would donate - that's how strongly I feel about your contribution to the blogosphere! And as for the assholian commenters on your last post, I don't know what to tell you. The election result was completely demoralizing for all my friends and family, but particularly for my gay friends and friends of color - they are on the front lines of this in a way that my privileged white ass is not. The morons who think we dodged a bullet by not electing Hillary are just that: morons. They were always here, but now they are emboldened. Comment moderation is your prerogative and I salute you for doing what you want with your platform. I'd say God Bless but I'm an atheist. Peace and Happy Holidays from the frozen North.

Anonymous said...

hi, I've been reading your blog for years but rarely comment(sorry). Your writing is so real, you've made me laugh, you've made me cry. You speak to my heart and write the words I never could. Thank you for writing and allowing us to read and share in a little slice of your life.

brandi

Heather Archibald said...

Don't stop S. It's my favorite bedtime reading. Xo

Heather Archibald said...

Don't stop S. It's my favorite bedtime reading. Xo

Pasley Travers said...


Please keep writing its such a pleasure to read your take on life. Truly and original and touching perspective.

Sharon said...

Don't stop. I forget about your blog. Then I remember when I am feeling out of sorts and just looking up random things to eat up time on a wintery Sunday afternoon. I read it and I feel better.

Sharon said...

Don't stop writing. I don't read it all the time because, life. But when I do it always makes me feel better.

Sharon said...

Don't stop. I forget about your blog. Then I remember when I am feeling out of sorts and just looking up random things to eat up time on a wintery Sunday afternoon. I read it and I feel better.

Sharon said...

Don't stop. I forget about your blog. Then I remember when I am feeling out of sorts and just looking up random things to eat up time on a wintery Sunday afternoon. I read it and I feel better.

Unknown said...

I have read your blog for years. I always look forward to what you have to say. I love your honesty and realness. The negative comments aren't from your readers, we would just stop reading. They are from joy vampires, so unhappy with their lives that they try to hurt others. Please remember that they are sad creatures. Thank you for your comments on Aleppo, again-- love your honesty. Much love. Tess