Reading other people’s blogs is something I love, strolling through snapshots of other lives, finding new friends, enjoying a clever phrase here, admiring ideas and envying tastes of other countries. It’s a distraction from my own life, expanding horizons, filling gaps.
There are times though, when I’m in a grumpy slump that I find myself gritting my teeth, envying in a resentful way rather than a gleeful one, feeling that I fall short because I haven’t achieved those things that I would normally be admiring: that larder stuffed full of home-canned organic produce, that beautifully made art work, that perfectly styled and thoughtfully devised new recipe.
That’s when I have to kick myself sharply, remind myself that my blog only shows the highlights, the public smiling face. While I’m busy going green over some other seemingly more perfect life than mine, there may be readers of my blog who sometimes have to grit their teeth in envy of our seemingly idyllic life.
Because it can be idyllic, but it is also life with all the gritty bits. Some blogs manage to pour out woes as well as triumphs and still be absorbingly readable, but it needs a perceptive honesty and a wry sense of humour to air the downsides of your life as well as the ups. Something I’ve not even attempted here. Not that there are any huge tragedies, but who wants to read about the small wearing difficulties of life, the price of petrol that makes living on a farm out of town ever more expensive, making you think twice about scheduling any extra activities, the rutted dirt road that shakes all our cars to pieces... I’m not sure that I even want to write about them and give them space, rather keeping my rose-tinted spectacles firmly wedged on my nose, putting my fingers in my ears and going lalalalala....
So instead of berating myself for not having accomplished all the best bits of everyone else’s achievements, I need to accept that we’re all different and get on with my own, even if they seem less interesting and more mundane to me. Writing, posting, social media stuff, interspersed with feeding ducklings, hanging out laundry, picking up kids from school, planning tomorrow’s birthday treasure hunt, a bit more writing, ticking off the list of articles and pushing aside the accounts again until they reach crisis point... again. Seems I’m human, not perfect after all, hard for a Virgo to admit!
So do you suffer from blog envy too? Is it OK to grumble out loud on your blog, or do you also feel the need to put on a smiling face for your readers?