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Am I a Mummy blogger or a blogger who’s a Mummy?

2010 was a funny old year for me – a year of contrasts between the full on parenting part of my life whilst I was off on maternity and gardening leave but also having to throw myself fully into reclaiming the professional me.

I guess in part it was a year when I accepted that I enjoy working and all that entails.  But it was also the year in which I realised that there is no shame in embracing the Mummy part of my life and in recognising that this may be an area which I need to focus on more.

I’m not sure that I have found a place where working me and Mummy me have managed to co-exist happily, but at least I know that in the same way I enjoy the cut and thrust of meetings and deadlines, I also enjoy gardening or cooking with the girls.  I have accepted that there is no shame in wanting to spend time with my children or in gaining pleasure from the time we spend together.

I have reached a place where I feel confident in my parenting decisions – they may not what most people would choose but they are right for me, they are right for my family and well, that is that (although I will admit to wobbles from time to time).  So yes I do co-sleep, I am still breastfeeding, I don’t believe in leaving my children to cry and I do believe in firm boundaries and strict rules and yes I believe that all of those are compatible choices.

But do I define myself as a Mummy first?  Probably not.

I still feel that I’m an awful lot more than a mother – that there are all these different parts of me that are as important and the Mummy bit.  That I am made up of many strands – that each is important and influences the others but that they all have times when they take precedence but one isn’t the over-riding force in my life.

I guess I am still a Mummy but still other things.

Which brings me to whether I consider myself a ‘Mummy blogger’.  There have been various conversations I’ve dipped into on Twitter questionning whether things like Cybermummy* or the Tots100** are inclusive or exclusive.  Whether certain people should be included or they are not sufficiently ‘Mummy blogger’ to join the party.

I guess I am lucky that my route into blogging was a bit different – that it was my lifeline to the outside world whilst I was confined to bed and that I discovered a whole range of blogs during that time.  I didn’t realise that the likes of British Mummy Bloggers was out there until many months after I’d been wibbling away on my own.  In fact it was a Daddy blogger that first said nice things about my writing (as ever, thank you Tim).

But what is a Mummy blogger?

There are blogs that write primarily about childrens’ products, about their family life, about their children and that isn’t really what I do.

I don’t chart the development of my girls, in fact I try and keep them a little out of the public eye – I often regret not being able to put up pretty photos of them but that isn’t what I feel comfortable doing.
Instead this blog is like me – its a whole muddle of things.  Views on this or that.  Rants about whatever has caused me to throw Marvin*** at the TV.  A mishmash of the things I consider important, or want to talk about, or need help or support with.

Mummy blogging has always sounded rather twee to me.  Sort of like a mothers’ meeting in the virtual world I guess.  It definitely doesn’t sound like my sort of thing.  And yet, you see in some way it is.  I am not sure that I could call myself a Mummy blogger, but I am a Mummy who blogs.

Photo credit: Velveteen Mind

* I am going to Cybermummy – there are people I want to meet, to catch up with again and as far as I’m concerned despite a name that brings up images of cyborg mothers and makes me cringe I still think its going to be lots of fun

** No I have no idea how I was number 74 in the 100 parenting blogs of 2010 despite never making it into the actual Tots100 at any point during the year – I guess my consistency at being just outside has had its benefits!  Did I mention I was number 74?

*** we have a soft toy moose called Marvin who lives on the sofa and is thrown at the TV when just ranting at it is insufficient – its better than throwing something that could cause real damage, right?  And it gives Marvin a purpose in life

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11 comments to Am I a Mummy blogger or a blogger who’s a Mummy?

  • Crystal Jigsaw

    Very good post with many points I can relate to. I’m a mum first and foremost, but I’m also me; a writer, farmer, wife and Telly addict! As working mums we are expected to find a balance and we often get slated for not doing it right. But there isn’t a right or wrong way, only a comfortable way.

    I’m a blogger and a mummy. They can call me what they want, but I know that I could give up blogging tomorrow, if i wanted to, it would be hard but i could do it. What I could never do is give up being a mum.

    CJ xx

    • Muddling Along

      Comfortable way is exactly right – its about finding what works for us and our family

      For me blogging is a nice hobby – something I enjoy and would miss if I didn’t do it but something I could walk away from if I needed to. The family and the job I couldn’t walk away from, just wouldn’t be possible

  • This powerful question is the inner-tube of the larger question, which echoes it. Once I had babies, I became a mother, to everyone who knew me. And yet I felt – and still feel – inside me, like I am a writer, a facilitator, a professional, a woman, a lover, a friend and *then* a mother. Okay, so right now the mothering part takes a lot of energy and time, but it is not necessarily my primary identity. And yet it is the label I somehow have accepted.

    I’d like to think we are a woman with something to express, and sometimes that happens with the filter of our growing experience as a mother, and sometimes, it’s just us – the women we are without any children or family – typing away at the keyboard (usually late at night, in the dark).

    Thanks for your thoughtful, provocative question.

  • I think as soon as we stop trying to pigeonhole people then it will no longer matter! Does the fact that I blog about my children make my blog any less valid or make me twee. I don’t think it does. I blog about everything and anything. I don’t feel that I am less of a woman because I am a mother. I don’t mind the tag, but I refuse to hide behind it or be made to feel less valuable because of it. I think that now I am finally content by the fact people underestimate me by the labels they chose to give me.

  • I am never happy with the term ‘mummy blogging’ as you say it’s OK if that is what your blog is about – parenting issues or the day to day life of your children, but like you mine is a mixture of nonsense, serious stuff and the odd occasional mention of mothering or my son. Sorry – yours isn’t nonsense at all!

    However, the umbrella of ‘mummy blogging’ sits nicely around a whole host of very diverse blogs, the common factor being that the writers of these blogs all have children and will from time to time talk about issues that concern parents. If that means that we can all meet up at Cyber Mummy for a good old knees up and get to flex our competitive muscles in the rankings then so be it.

    • Muddling Along

      Hahaha mine is nonsense, its like the outpourings of the weird parts of my brain!

      Will look forward to meeting you in the flesh at Cybermummy!

  • Liz

    I’ve been having this problem for ages, and I decided I was a blogger who happened to have a kid. So I felt like a fraud being on the Tots100 and had myself taken off. I just felt there were actual proper ‘Mummy Bloggers’ on there and I was taking their spot. I still like being on BMB and I’ll be going to CyberMummy as I have friends in both groups, but I don’t really think of myself as a Mummy Blogger at all anymore.

  • I’m the same – I just started to blog to cope with being at home, and to have adult conversations/grown-up thoughts. It’s emphatically not only about being a mother, while obviously that is also part of my life. I do like having mummy bloggers to read as well, though. Amongst others. I stopped worrying about the definitions a while back.

  • A very interesting conundrum. Personally, I think of myself as an unashamed jam-addict first, aspiring sleepoholic second, and mum third (also of the ‘muddling’ through things variety–I think that word captures it perfectly).

    Mixing motherhood and life’s other stuff ain’t easy–something I really struggle with constantly–in reality and virtual reality alike. On the upside, keeps things interesting anyway.

    Keep up the good work…on all five hundred fronts 🙂

  • I starting blogging long before I was a mum or even married so I am not sure what I am! I don’t mind being called a Mummy Blogger but I would rather just be called a Blogger.

    I will be interested to see what CyberMummy is like this year, as last year I felt a lot of the companies that were there all assumed we would have young children and would be fairly tech phobic and were shocked to see the diverse group of people that were there.

    Whatever your blog is I like it!

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