Will the Real Me Please Stand Up?

My brain was sparked I suppose by yesterday's SPT challenge. I pondered about my outward appearance in black and white and color. Today I started thinking about the inside, my emotions/moods, my strengths and my weaknesses, etc. Where do I document the real me? A written journal? A scrapbook? A blog? I realized there are pieces of me in lots of places. Yikes!

This spring I started blogging on a whim (that's how a lot things start in my little world). Of course I was quickly bitten by the Bloggy Bug. Somehow I've written close to 200 posts. That is either exciting or frightening, depending how you look at it. Other than a few friends, I didn't think anyone would read my blog. Oh my, what a pleasant surprise when I started making Bloggy Friends! Is it normal to talk about your Bloggy Friends with your husband? Well, normal or not, I do. I've been inspired by so many wonderful women out in Blogville. Thank you!

I have wondered off and on if I am 100% honest on my blog. I realize through blogging we usually only share snippets of our lives. That's okay. My snippets are sometimes serious, sometimes frivolous, sometime humorous, sometimes thought provoking (maybe), sometimes boring (probably). That's how life is too, isn't it? But am I 100% honest? Do I present my true self? I'm not sure. Maybe.

I was probably most honest in my private journals. Even when I was inconsistent they were a good dumping ground. What has happened to my written journaling? My scrapbooking? Well, those things seem to be on the back burner. I feel this strong desire to document my life and our family's life, but I feel like I'm juggling and dropping most of the balls. I'm glad I have the Blog as something of a record, but it has replaced journaling in notebooks and scrapbooking pictures and memories. This bothers me. I feel a need to revaluate and balance my time more evenly (since I'm still on January in my scrapbook and almost a year behind with my written journaling).

So, back to whether I am truly myself on my blog. I hope I am. I read a post by Lynn a few weeks ago and it has stuck in my craw. She wrote about being an Oxymoron. If you get a chance please take a moment and read her wise words. I feel like an oxymoron most of the time. Do you? I suppose it's human nature coupled with hormones.

In the spirit of being more honest, I thought I'd share a bit of what I wrote today (after I blew off the dust) in my sporadic journal.

Random thoughts: I realize I am deeply selfish at my core. I want more time to myself. Just me. Sometimes I wish I was completely alone. I wish I could stay in bed ALL day and read one book after another. Sometimes I feel guilty for my selfish thoughts, other times I don't care.

I feel like I'm only doing bits and pieces of things. I have a hard time finishing things. I stumble around inconsistently cooking, cleaning and crafting. One minute I can be negative, nit-picky, small-minded and jealous, the next I'll be a positive Pollyanna, encouraging and helpful. One minute I'm out there doing lots of things and the next I just want to crawl in a cave. I confuse myself with my random emotions and mood swings. I've been eating way too many sweets and drinking way too much coffee.

Anyhoo...that's what was rolling around upstairs today. I guess that's me. If you made it through this lengthy post, give yourself a pat on the back. Ultimately I want to allow myself to be more "me" on my blog, whatever that might be. I don't ever want to pretend, or only present the positive (or be drastically negative). I just want to be real.

How do you document your life? Do you keep a handwritten journal? Do you feel you are 100% real & honest on your blog?


  1. I loved reading this post. I sometimes ask myself just how personal to get on my blog--should I write about the good along with the bad (like the days I feel depressed, angry, whatever...), but I just don't know. I was never one to journal in the past, but I can see how that would be more helpful than blabbing to my poor husband about all of my random (and somewhat irrational) feelings. I can't say that what I put on my blog is the whole me, but I'm not sure if that's better that way, and I should just leave the personal stuff to my family and close friends. By the way, I have felt all of the feelings you have mentioned up above, so they don't sound strange to me at all. One thing about you that does come across through all of your blogs is how insightful and funny you are--I hope that is part of the Holly I know, because I love it!!! By the way, I hope you keep up blogging, because I soooo much love to hear about your life (its like your own reality show in a way). Sorry about the novel....

  2. Holly, this is why I love you, my pretend internet friend!

    That was so real, so well said. I loved it. I feel like that, too - the selfish part. But what worries me most is that I don't feel guilty for feeling that way. Maybe we're not meant to?

    I, too, struggle with what to put out there on our little blogs. How much is too much? How real can I be? Sometimes I feel like my blog is the me that I present at parties - only the positive, happy-go-lucky good side. Maybe I should let the dark, angry me out to play once in a while on the blog.

    Anyway, loved what you wrote. You're a great writer. You keep us coming back for more.

    P.S. My husband makes fun of me when I talk about my blog friends, too.

  3. I've kept a journal since my 11th birthday, but it's not an everyday occurance, because quite frankly my hand got tired of writing, and I couldn't stay on one thing for very long. I have about three hand written journals and am very grateful for the internet and blogland, it's definately helpful to keep track of life!

  4. Oh Ms. Holly. You are amazing! This makes me think of a decision that has been somewhat of a teeter totter issue in my life. I started my blog for MY BOYS!...I rarely post about myself, my husband, or personal info/issues. I have gone back and forth on whether or not to change that up a bit. I journal for personal aspects of me and my life, have a separate journal for the boys and things they say and do..and then the blog for those things I want to share about them with others. Scattered? Yes. Somehow though...I need that sacred dumping ground for just me (in a book, dusty or not...sparatic or not) not because I can be more real or honest there...but because it is necessary for me to stay grounded in what I offer others outwardly. It gives perspective to what I want to share/ or withhold, and allows a balance. Pieces all over the place? Yes, but how lucky we are for the liberty to chose what is placed where and when we want. I am empowered by women like yourself who share what you feel comfortable sharing...and I just take that at face value and cherish the way it enriches my life. So selfishly...I enjoy your posts for what they are...bits and pieces of whatever they may be. THANK YOU for sharing what you chose.

  5. wow- this post hit home for me. :) thanks for sharing your thoughts. i really loved your journal entry. i thought "oh my word! someone else feels that way, too?!"

    i think i'm pretty honest in my blog, but there are still a lot of things that don't make it out there. my husband is constantly surprised at what i do choose to share and asks "are you sure you want to put that out there?" i guess we all keep some things totally to our private selves. For me, though, it's been nice to be a little more open despite the fact that it's mainly total strangers reading my thoughts. it gives me some great perspectives on life. i should start up my journal again, but i find that i even edit that sometimes before i write. thinking about it, the last time i was totally honest in my journal, i was probably 20 years old... how sad.
    i love your blog. i think it's fantastic. :) thanks for allowing me to be part of your blogging world!

  6. yes...i think we probably all go through this. some prefer to do it on a daily basis, although I don't think I could. I love writing and had a journal for many many years--but have not for awhile. I think this tool is magnificient though, because it makes life real in a way that your loved ones and friends share it with you. Can you imagine what other new things might come up in the next 5 years?

  7. I think you just wrote what everyone feels every day. We all try our best to be our best selves. I have been pondering the whole journal thing, too. I don't think there are certain things I can put on a blog (not that I'm not authentic on it, but just some things are not for public consumption), but I have not kept a good journal in years. I should at least write down those moments somewhere. I think it makes us all better people in the end. If only to see how far we've come.

    I totally think of my bloggy friends a lot. I know it's weird, but I do feel a connection with so many cool people.

  8. Thank you all for your thoughts! I always appreciate and enjoy your comments. Really!

    I realize that my blog probably isn't the best place for EVERY thought, because, well...some things are private. I do like looking back over "trends" in my posts, it's kinda fun to see where my mind was at that point, and I'm glad I have that record...for whatever it's worth.

    I guess I was just feeling guilty for neglecting my written journal and my scrapbooks, because those are tangible keepsakes. I will try to balance all of it better, instead of feast or famine.

  9. Hi Holly! thanks for visiting me today. This is a great post!
    I think my answer is pretty straight-forward, as I did not set out to blog about myself or daily going-ons. My purpose (mission!) was to keep to my distinctive theme, and keep in mind at the same time that some day I could print out all of my posts and bind up for my kids (& their spouses). I guess there will come a day when I feel like I am finished blogging! ha
    I do occ. write in a journal and it is way more personal, spiritually minded.
    I guess to answer your question, yes, I feel like I am honest on my blog. I say it like it is ...
    Thanks again for your encouragement.

  10. Hi Holly, I recognized your picture from Christie's blog!

    This was an interesting post. I love blogging too but it has not replaced my real journal which is a stream-of-consciousness flow of my ups and downs. I am not writing for an audience, just to get it out!

    I always wonder if people who know me only in blogland have any clue about the "real" me. Would they like me in person? Would I like them? And does it really matter...since this is just a fun/cheap/easy way to kill time?

    Will have to do write my own post on the subject!

  11. how funny that we both had this on our brain.

    your blog was a huge inspiration for me during my marathon training. so thank you for writing it! keep blogging girl
    when is your marathon!?

  12. Your post hit so close to home! I could echo so many of your thoughts. I've struggled so much with the selfishness thing.

    I've had periods in my life where I kept a journal and it's something I've been thinking of getting back into. I think that in what I post on my blog, I'm pretty honest. I just don't post about a lot of things!

    --the other Holly!

  13. Hi Holly- I've found you through Stie's site. Great post. Lots of interesting questions. For me the blog started as a way to keep in touch with family who live out of state. Just updates and photos of my kids. Turns out none of them read it often, or at least they never comment, and slowly my blog has become my journal instead. Sadly for me I kept a journal since I was 8 years old. Then my mom died and I had such a hard time writing about it that I stopped journaling altogether. My blog is now becoming that journal. I have loved getting to know so many new bloggy friends in the process.

  14. Hi Holly, I don't even know how I stumbled upon you. Celia's blog maybe? Who knows?! Annnnyway... my name is HOlly too so I guess that's why I was intrigued. I love your site and I loved this post because although I tell a lot about myself in my blog, my journaling is definitely the REAL me but probably not the funny me.

  15. Great post. I could have written it myself, even the way you fell into blogging.

    I do believe I'm honest on my blog. But my blog id DEFINITELY only snippets of my life. And as you say, sometimes it's frivolous, sometimes it's serious, and it often seems disjointed to me, as I go back and look at my topics. But it IS me.

    However, I've been told by real life friends that it's only one side of me. And I think I'm okay with that. I don't see how it could be anything but that.

    But I do hope that I am always honest.

  16. I'm honest about what I blog about. For me, my blog is mostly about my family, and a way to document my kids and what happens around here that I might not remember in a few decades--mostly the little stuff like elephants in pants...you know.

    It makes me think in those terms and that's why I'm so glad that I do it. Not only have I met somre really great people, but my kids are going to be able to read this some day and get some insight on themselves at certain ages, and me with them for that matter. That's important to me.

  17. I can totally relate to how you're feeling as well. I used to worry about if I was being "real" on my blog and now I worry if I'm being too real and not fun enough. ;) I also have a consistance problem in real life and so I'm not surprised it's shown on my blog.

    I am always unsure of how things I write will be taken and if I'm being judged. Then I quickly remember that blogs are for the individual and what they need/want to share/vent/express and that's all that matters.

    I too have felt very selfish and need to have more time alone. For me that stems from a constant cranky toddler. ;)

    Thank you so much for sharing your private thoughts. I really enjoy your blog and love what you have to share. I find you very inspiring and completely lovely.

  18. Wow, what you wrote in your journal sounds like me EXACTLY! I guess I'm not the only one who feels guilty for feeling this way sometimes. Just knowing that makes me feel not so bad.


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