On blogging

I don't know what's your take on blogging, but I get anxiety attacks every time this blog picks up new readers.

It goes in phases: for a while there is a rather constant number of visitors and pageviews, the same pattern through weekdays - high on a Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday, low on a weekend -  and then suddenly the number hikes up, in a bunch.

I don't understand, really, how and why it jumps in phases, but it does: suddenly there's a jump in visitors' numbers and then it stays constant like that again until another hike.

I remember the time I first noticed it getting up into the 300-s and I looked at this screen, eyes wide, thinking, ugh...

I blog because I release: if something is written down and open to be viewed in public then it is done. Gone - I cannot take it back once it's out there. (God I sometimes wished I could though!) Can't stop it, can't delete it - if it's written down, it's out there.

And it doesn't make sense worrying about it either. It doesn't help. I've tried - it just doesn't - and so in a weird way making it public helps me feel less embarrassed about something because I've found that the more honest I am the more people voice out in agreement: yes, yes they too have felt like that.

And it helps me, it really does - not even the people who then tell me that they relate to it (though it sure is nice!), but just the fact that I've released it and I've let go. It's gone.

But my point isn't about reaching a growing number of people with the stuff I write; if anything, a growing number of readers makes it more difficult for me to stay candid. My mother starts commenting, other people who are opinionated start commenting, then it's down to advice givers and people who start off with "I don't want to criticize, but..." - and I'm, like, hell yeah you don't want to criticize! - and then I get all sarcastic and... pointy.

A few weeks ago Holly wrote on her blog that my blog is one of her favorites and I swear I had this whole existential discussion in my head that for a good few days went along the lines of, omg, omg, omg, omg...

Then another blogger I had NO IDEA would say this thing wrote out publicly that my blog is one of her favorites and I had this Holly-experience all over again - omg, omg, omg, omg...

It freaks me out. It really does! I mean, it's nice to hear it, sure, but straight away I feel this mountain of expectations descend on me.

Expectations. (God I hate this word!)

And none of them probably expect this blog to be anything other than what it is at the moment, and they're not implying anything - all they do is say they like it - but straight away I feel this... need of wanting to be liked and therefore needing to censor, somewhat, what I say and how I say it, and I fear losing my place of freedom and solitude.

When Harry, a persistent commenter appeared, I looked and thought: who the hell is this guy!? Or when I see people whom I do not know personally link to stuff I've written, I wonder: where'd they find me!?

And I mean, really, it's nice, but it's also effin' scary. I do not want this place to be anything other than what I want it to be. I want to be able to write about Catholics without fearing offending someone, because inadvertently I will anyway. I want to be able to write F*ck you! without having some sort of a blogging police descend on me with their ideas on appropriate-ness.

And I want to be able to be whatever the hell I want without feeling like I need to be liked by someone, because it's just plain crazy. I need to like me. I!

And so I don't know if you've noticed, but my recent ramblings have been a bit edgy to a point of swearing even more than I'd normally do. I've felt anxious about it, but I've been working on looking past the expectations that I, may I remind you, have put on myself, myself - and writing regardless.

And in some ways it's probably good that the readership jumps and then stays constant again for a while because it gives me time to get used to it. I think it's healthy for me to learn coping with it, coping with what other people say or think about me and just doing my thing regardless, and if someone gets peeved off, well, good riddance.

It's the parallel between my work and my blogging at the moment. Would sort of like to write about it longer, but I really do need to go to sleep now.

Good night.

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