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Monday, 5 October 2015

{extant}

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Things ain't what they used to be. 

Lately, I've been giving a fair amount of thought to blogging, and whether I still belong in this world. 

Six years is a rather long time, and I guess I'm quite pleased that I've stuck to this hobby for such a long while: my attention span is usually a lot shorter than that! But six years is also a lot of time for things to have changed in the blogging field. 

I started this blog as a place I could share my thoughts, my feelings and any hopes and fears. I haven't really done that, or at least not to the extent I'd imagined I would. There are several parts of my life which I like to keep compartmentalised, which has meant not sharing it here. 

In that time, a lot of things have changed. The way I've written posts and the things I've chosen to write about have changed, but perhaps not that much (although when I look back to my first few posts, they do make me cringe). I've changed a lot and feel as lost now as I ever have. I guess I'm not sure where I belong anymore, but I'm starting to think it's not here.

I've struggled more and more recently with my outfit photos. Although putting outfits together has been something I've always enjoyed, I'm getting less and less happy with my photos. It hasn't helped that since my DSLR was stolen, I've been having to make do with grainy iPhone photos, but realistically, I can't afford to change that anytime soon.

I've also grown less and less happy with myself, my shape, my size and just, well..me, in general. It's as though all of the confidence I once had in myself is sand and I can feel it slipping away through my fingers, but can't do anything to stop it. I don't know how to change that. Speaking to counsellors, GPs and other so-called professionals hasn't helped and I'm conscious that I don't want to waste people's time - if those people can help others, they should use their appointment time to do that, surely.

When I think about all of the things I've gained as a direct result of dusting off this little corner of the web and making it my own, I can hardly believe my luck. Some of my very best friends have resulted from bonding over blogging things and I'm very happy to have those people in my life. I don't regret a moment of it. But these days the blogging world seems to be more about page views and popularity contests, rather than bonding over shared interests and meeting up with people purely to discover more about the face behind the blog, rather than for some hidden agenda.

I'm not, and never have I been, interested in the playground popularity contests. I didn't start my blog to win awards, and it was never a career move. I've got very strong views on keeping a degree of separation between my work and leisure time and I don't aspire to be a "professional blogger". Which is a good job, as I've never fitted the bill. Not pretty enough, nor skinny enough, nor hypocritical enough: I'd never make it in the blogging world.

I'm not sure what the outcome of this post is/will/should be. When I started typing, I didn't know whether this was the end or not, and I still don't. Someone tells me regularly that I should find the time for the things I enjoy, and that is true. I have always thrived on being busy and it seems to be my natural state. I think it's something about feeling more worth based on the number of things in the diary, but that's about as far as my psycho-analysis skills will allow me to go.

I guess I just need to figure a few things out.


26 comments:

  1. Hi Char
    I agree; do what makes you happy. if blogging has become another chore then leave it for a while & take a break. Keep it short & sweet on IG &/or Twitter. Put yourself first for a bit, sometimes its the only way you can have the energy to keep helping others. Big hugs my lovely.

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    1. Thank you. I'm not sure whether it's that blogging itself has become the chore; I still like writing the posts and getting my thoughts down onto the page (screen). I guess it's more of a "what am I doing this for" thing. I'm not really sure.

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  2. I hope this isn't the end. Your blog has been a little slice of wonderfulness on the internet for a long time and I've loved every second I've spent here <3

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    1. Thank you. I've spent a big part of this week thinking about this and I don't think it's the end. I'd miss all the good parts, like my blogger pals, too much.

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  3. Dear Char,
    I am sorry that things have been so difficult for you. I do hope this isn't the end as I look forward to your blog enormously- I love your outfits, your perspectives, wishlists, everything you do- your blog is the first one I look at each day- just typing d and your blog comes up! Maybe don't blog every day if that helps?x

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    1. Thank you Kezzie, that's so kind.

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  4. As the daughter of a therapist I can tell you that professionals DO NOT think you're wasting their time by being there; their job is to help you, however long that takes (if that's what you want/need).

    I'd miss you if you left the blogging world but I also hope you figure out what's best for you. x

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    1. Thank you. I'm doing a lot of thinking at the moment, I think it's a "taking stock" thing. I think I've always had major issues around being a burden, which I think extend to this train of thought. I might try it again, I'm just so conscious of stopping others from getting the help they need by taking up an appointment which might not go anywhere.

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  5. Char,
    I have just written an heartfelt reply to you on my last post. I know how tough it is - oh heck I do.
    When I first met you I was absolutely in awe of your personality, you are a free spirt, a wild one and so passionate and kind beyond your years. You certainly inspired me.

    Lets meet up again. I'm sure a blogging re-union is on the cards. And be sure to bring toadstools, cake and Alex (because obvs she is awesome).
    Blog for you, blog whenever, blog whatever. But, please don't leave.

    Alice x x x

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    1. Thank you - I definitely think a Team Norbury reunion would be great. Let's do that!

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  6. I often check your blog as I relate to you and yu choose fun prints and you dress classy. I came across a blog this morning it was just some girl taking like 15 pics of herself including close ups in tight sportswear and underwear mirror photos, comments were kissing her ass.. ! As someone who has only been sewing from pattern for six months I had little idea about the fans, I just like transparency, the attention seeking doesn't get a comment from me! Another is when there is a sewing book review and ppl post pretty much the same thing rather than a critical review like someone wholly independent like Laura Mae might and has. Being new at sewing I don't have the repetition. You are very pretty, anxiety is a horrible thing to have. I find photos hard to take as I've gone up two dress sizes and vegans are congratulated for losing weight or literally eating oranges in a bikini.. Perhaps we are critical on ourselves but it is a fairly superficial society. But what you promote with the sewing inspires people to be more self sufficient, how to look feminine without those bum grazing dresses in the shops, dressing cheery instead of a black dress everyday

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    1. I totally agree with you about society being superficial. Sometimes I wonder about the blogging community and whether that just adds to this. With "new things", "wishlists" and whatever else, are we just being superficial about objects and stuff and promoting consumerism? But then I don't think it's any different to any other hobby really. Thank you for reading, it's lovely that you do and that you felt inspired to comment. I guess maybe my issue is that I don't know where I fit in or where my blog fits in either. I'm not model skinny so not in the category of the orange-eaters in sportswear of which you speak, nor am I one of those who follow the trends with the fashion industry. I sew my own clothes but I'm no sewing expert, so I'd never feel right posting a tutorial or anything. I'm not really sure.

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  7. It does all seem like a popularity contest to me too, and I'm kinda sick of it, so I totally get why you want a break. I think that'd be a good thing to do - maybe after some breathing space you'd know if you want to return or just stop completely. Either way, I think your blog is fabby but you have to put yourself first here :)

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    1. Thank you. I think that could be what I need.

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  8. I hope this won't be the end, because I love reading your blog, seeing all of your beautiful outfits, and some of the things you get up to. You are one of my personal faves! But obviously, the most important thing is to put yourself first and find out what's right for you. If blogging isn't making you happy anymore, and it feels like a chore, then you shouldn't force yourself to blog. Maybe have a little break or relax your blogging schedule for a bit so you can figure things out.

    Also, don't ever feel like you're wasting a doctor's or councillor's time; they're there to help people, even when they don't / can't come up with a diagnosis or a solution. Your problems are just as valid as any other person's! I really wish they'd been able to help you, and I hope things start getting better for you really soon. Just remember, you're awesome just as you are, and a lot of people care about you! Sending hugs your way. xx

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    1. Thank you, Louise. I'm not sure if it's that it feels like a chore so much as it's not quite what I want it to be. But perhaps those are just things to work on.

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  9. I have been a reader and a fan of your blog for a long time and I would miss you if you stopped but you have to look after you first. You are NOT wasting anyone's time by looking for help, I just hope you can find what you need

    Maria xxx

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  10. I don't comment often, but I would miss your blog if you stopped. I love seeing your outfit photos, and I love that you're never trying to sell anything, or advertise anything - it's just you, your gorgeous dresses and your amazing shoes.

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    1. Thank you so much for your lovely comment and for reading :) I have always wanted to make sure that my blog was "me", no influences.

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  11. I don't comment often, but I would miss your blog if you stopped. I love seeing your outfit photos, and I love that you're never trying to sell anything, or advertise anything - it's just you, your gorgeous dresses and your amazing shoes.

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  12. I don't comment often, but I would miss your blog if you stopped. I love seeing your outfit photos, and I love that you're never trying to sell anything, or advertise anything - it's just you, your gorgeous dresses and your amazing shoes.

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  13. I don't comment often, but I would miss your blog if you stopped. I love seeing your outfit photos, and I love that you're never trying to sell anything, or advertise anything - it's just you, your gorgeous dresses and your amazing shoes.

    I hope you don't get this comment about 10 times, I've been having trouble submitting it!

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  14. I’m sorry that your camera situation has made the situation worse for you. Your outfits are always so well put together, the quality of the photos don’t take anything away from that.

    If you need to be speaking to people, professionals, you shouldn’t feel that you are wasting their time, these things can take time, a breakthrough doesn’t come quickly in some cases. You deserve the time, you’re worth the time, just as much as the next person.

    As for blogging, unfollow the blogs / twitter feeds and Instagram accounts that make you feel that blogging is worthless, there are still many bloggers out there that do it to reach out and make a connection. Don’t compare yourself to those blogs, see your worth in the friendships you have made, the friends you have that come back time and again to see you, catch up and comment.

    Being pretty or skinny doesn’t make a good blog, a genuine blog. You are attractive and you have a nice figure, I wish you could see this. And it’s not all about looks and size, it’s about you, what’s inside. You’re amazing. You deserve to feel happiness and contentment in life, you put so much into life.

    I can’t stress enough how important it is to seek help and find a way through, don’t lose yourself because you think someone else is more deserving. You deserve happiness.

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    1. You're so right here, Hazel. I have to think about the great things which have come as a direct result of creating this blog. All of the amazing friendships I've made, both on and off line.

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