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Blogging Bravely

I've written a blog post every day this week and deleted all but one of them.

I've written about the public breakdown I had after Knox's wheelchair collapsed in the middle of the street and no one offered to help me fix it. I've written about how some arsehole didn't hold the door open as he walked through it and it almost broke Knox's feet when the door slammed on him.

I wrote about blogging conferences and professional jealousies.

I wrote about tax season.

I just wrote a post about how the school phoned wanting my email so the principal could email me. How I have sat here for hours now, refreshing my email all the while imagining horrible scenarios involving my children and how I'm going to be forced to homeschool them like it or not. And still, NO EMAIL. The curiosity, it's killing me.

Everything I write, I delete.

I don't know how to press publish anymore.

It feels like everything worthy of being said is being said by others and being said better than I ever could. 

I'm blog-blocking myself. 

It's like I've forgotten how to blog honestly, the way I used to, because I'm paralysed by who will read it.

Years of being judged by my inlaws, my community, even some of my family, it's all scarred me to the point I don't know how to say what I want to say anymore. 

Blogging comes with a price. You may not have to pay it immediately, but it's there. I've paid my price, had my pound of flesh cut from my body. I've forgotten how to blog bravely.

But I still want to.

I'm still here. 

Blogging and deleting. Struggling to find the right way to write the words that I need to say. Bravely sharing big important truthes we will all be better for having read.

That's the problem. 

I have no big important truth to share. 

Not today anyways.

Oh wait. I have one truth to share:

Big dogs take big poops and I hate picking up poop.

Wait. That's not it.

My toe hair is so long it catches on my sheets and pulls a bit and it hurts. I don't want to be the woman who has to shave her toe hair. How feminine is that?

Sorry. That's not it either.

There is a dead skunk just on the other side of the road from my driveway and I really kind of want to poke at it with a stick.

That's just gross. I think there must be something wrong with me.

Oh, I know! 

I LOVE going to the local car wash. It's one of those wand wash places where you blast the dirt off your car manually. I feel like a GOD when I am blasting my car clean. I feel productive. Strong. And slightly gritty because I haven't quite figured out the right ratio from car to wand distance. Blow back is a bitch. BUT SO FUN.

I should delete this post. It's random and uninteresting.

Wait. It's kind of like life. Nonsensical but with a lot of blow back.

Starts blog post about the therapeutic brilliance of personal blogging.

Deletes said post.

Meh. You can't hit a home run every time you swing at a ball. At least now you know why I don't publish more often. You're welcome.

Reader Comments (69)

This post was pretty brave if you ask me.

And people are schmucks. I'm going to hold an extra door open in hopes that it reaches you.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBakingSuit

Holy crap, are you living in my brain? You just wrote what I've been feeling the last couple of weeks.
I wrote and deleted two today.
I feel like I'm losing my mojo. Or whatever the hell you call it.
I think what we need is a vacation.
Yep-that's it...thanks for saying what I've been feeling! It will return...

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMary ANne

When there is a big thing that you can't write (or aren't ready to write about) about the little things don't seem worth publishing. They might be brilliant, but YOU know.

I guess I mean I get it.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterGoonSquadSarah

I'm glad you decided to hit publish, instead. Thanks for the reminder, about the blogging bravely thing, not so much about my long toe hairs...annoying bastages.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLiz

I love random, and your random is not uninteresting. Tanis it's so refreshing to hear that someone I deem as a more seasoned, if not "big" blogger has these same issues -- that everyone is saying the same thing and is saying it better. I'm also freaked out, because it means that feeling never goes away.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLeigh Ann

Well, I liked this. It made me feel like we were having a conversation, and it's been too long since we did that in person.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJulie Marsh

It IS hard to blog honestly all the time. I can't tell you how many posts I write and hit delete on. I try never to do it, but it does happen.

It sucks to be judged. Feels like getting kicked below the belt every time and even when those of us with thick skin blow it off, there is always a bit of pain. We are all humans after all.

I love you no matter what you write. Well....maybe if you wrote about....nah, I'd still love you.

Hope the email finally arrives and it is nothing bad.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterC.C. Chapman

I wrote a blog post yesterday because some bad shit went down and the guilt was killing me. Before that, it had been a month. A MONTH. I have got to stop hitting delete.

What you said was big and important and brave in it's own right. You just keep being you. That's why we keep coming back.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJann

Meh - I don't even start typing because big old self-editor kyboshes me so brilliantly. On the upside, no-one reads my shit any way so it is a self-fulfilling pity party that you can't even SEE happening in my dark little corner of the internet.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterjeanie

I so want to hear about the arseholes!!

I'm so sorry no one stopped to help. I so wish I were near you. I totes would've helped!!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKris

I know this place sooooo well! Sending love and hugs, because before you know it, life will send you something to blog bravely about.... damnit!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSandi

THIS: "I'm blog-blocking myself. It's like I've forgotten how to blog honestly, the way I used to, because I'm paralysed by who will read it. Years of being judged by my inlaws, my community, even some of my family, it's all scarred me to the point I don't know how to say what I want to say anymore. "

Is SO true for me. So true. I'm working really hard to get past it. So glad that you pressed publish this time.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMarta

I couldn't have said it better myself. There is a reason my blog is largely silent these days. It's like after 7 years I all of a sudden forgot how to blog. Paralyzed by that damn publish button because all I can think of is what will come of it.

I miss the days where I just hit publish.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTarasview

Brilliant if you ask me. But I am no popular blogger by no means. But I am no longer concerned with who else is doing what. All the noise runs me batty and only follow those I love. Hence, why am here.
You publish away. I will keep reading. You may not think its brave, but its honest and to me that is brave with cojones.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlma

I get it. You still managed to get an idea across. So, thanks for that.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKatja

I haven't been blogging as long as you, but I feel that paralysis this year. Who reads and who has written it already and why am I writing this story and who does it help or hurt.
The cost of it all.
I even think about it when I comment now. But I'll hit publish on this comment anyway.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlex@LateEnough

This wasn't a brave post. Not sure why people would think so. Bravery only comes along every once in a while. Most of us write one or two brave posts a year, if lucky. But this was honest. Honest in heart. And you do honest better than anyone else, even when you try to hide from it.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNeil

I think your blog is great! Daily posts, weekly posts, or whatever. :)

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJenifer

Well, I hate that you had a reason to write this post, but I'm glad you did so I could nod my head and feel a little better about the truths I keep deleting. Also, I'm totally one of those women who shaves her toe hair, though that's getting harder to do with a giant belly in the way. And you're welcome to join my Picking Up Dog Poop Bigger Than A Frat Boys Poop support group.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJill @BabyRabies

I love this in so many ways. You are not alone!! Write, edit, delete is the story of my life!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterTonya

I have my first post started. . .the first one I've attempted to write in more than four MONTHS. I am THIS CLOSE to hitting delete. Glad you broke through---let it go too long and the hurdle just gets too high.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterFairly Odd Mother

I think it was all worth saying... but only you know about your 'payback' and that matters too. Even with 'nothing' to say, you say it so well. Nodded the whole way through...

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBB

Tannis - you are one of the bravest bloggers I've ever met . . .and by met I mean developed a total blogger-crush at last year's Type-A =)


May 2, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterhchybinski

I have to say, I love your posts, each and every one. This one, however, was especially important to me as it reminded me that I have to shave my toe hair, summer is here in Ontario, Canada and so are open toed shoes. So you see, never ever hit delete, as you never know who you may be reaching out and helping with your blog post that day!!!! :)

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAllison Rouble

Maybe you're just bored of blogging? I know I have a ton of posts in draft and can't seem to press publish... out of wanting some sense of privacy I guess. But sometimes I feel the same way - it's been said and done. And yet there will always be something new to be said. And remember, it's your perspective that people want to read!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMaria

It's your story, and for that, it is important. There are those of us that come here, looking forward to hearing your story. The good, the bad, and the ugly. And yes, there is a lot of ugly, but it tends to be the ugly of other people, the people who act like Knox is invisible, and you have to look at the reality of life, and we get to see how insensitive people can be, and it can make us look at the way we deal with things in day to day life. To we give a side eye, or just ignore it all together, when we see a person in trouble? Do we not hold doors for people with a bigger load that us? Do we ignore those that we know are different? and do we do it because we are afraid? Not of those people, but the what if, what if it happens to me? Anyhow, be yourself. That is who we come for, and who we support, and who we love. Out of all the blogs I read, you are in my top 10 for women I would love to meet.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKris

As a new parent/mom blogger I love this post. My boyfriend and I recently started our blog to share our experience as new parents to a three month old boy and I can sit there and come up with post ideas in my head for hours. I can even start wording them in my head...but then it comes to hitting post on our website and... I hesitate... or worse, I delete it. Surely, people don't want to read my petty thoughts, I think. And then I realize, that's the whole point of blogging. To say what you want, regardless of how unimportant, and have others read it. And like life, sometimes it's random or seemingly unimportant...

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterBree Mobley

I'm with you. Seven year itch?

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterkarengreeners

Someone in my FB group mentioned this post and I love it! It's my first time here.

"Hi, my name is Jennie and I sometimes shave my toes."

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLady Jennie

I know this. I do.
I have many truths I dare not write.
So I go make lists.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAlison

Holy shit. I haven't even read all of the comments yet but DAMMIT we're all in the same boat!

Life is messy but we're all going through it. Isn't that why this blogging thing took off in the first place??

Why won't we all just write, for fuck's sake??

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHeadless Mom

If you write it they will come. :)

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered Commenterkyooty


As someone who has been reading your blogs for over a year, I must say I am both astonished and heartbroken.

I guess I shouldn't be astonished, because some of what you are feeling I have lived through. The moment when due to others you don't feel that what you are writing is good enough.

I'm heartborken because, I hate that you feel this way.

So take these words as my attempt to explain to you how very wrong you are.

In today's society, we all face so many challanges and bad days. Some have it far worse than others, but at the end of the day, a bad day is a bad day.

Many of your readers, including myself, are looking for someone who offers a bright spot to lift us. YOU DO THAT WITH YOUR BLOGGING. Funny, witty, never boring (at least I've never fround anything you write boring). When I see that you have a new post up, I get excited.

Someone also has to be a champion for those who have disabilities, like Knox and what you as his mother and your family have to deal with. YOU DO THIS. You make up reflect. You make up hope. You show others who have kids with disabilities that SOMEONE ELSE KNOWS WHAT THEY ARE GOING THROUGH.

There is so much you offer, regardless of the content. It's all wonderful, regardless if it makes me laugh or if it makes me cry. If it makes me thank God I don't live in the constant snow land of Canada. From following your irritations, insecurities, happy times, or deciding to surprise your husband with blue hair in an unusal place.

You never know when you post something, how it is going to go over, I understand that. But your posts matter. They really do.

So take heart Tanis, your postings are important in many different ways and the world needs what you provide. A Champion, A Lifter of Hearts, A Philosopher, A Blogging Superhero.

Don't go putting your cape away because of the insecurites caused by others. Why? Because there are so many people out there who will say, "What would we do without Tanis and her Blog".

Take it to heart Moose Speaker. You are more than good enough.

- Kevin

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKevin Riley

Don't shave the toe hair!!! Wax it. It doesn't hurt like the bikini and lasts almost all summer!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKate

I've haven't written in weeks for similar reasons - I feel like other big stuff is going on in my little world and the big world and I'm just sort of sick of hearing my own voice (in writing). I love reading your blog and hearing your news and all of your tidbits of life.

And wait- I've shaved my toe hair forever. I thought that was a thing and now I'm reading your blog and finding out I'm gross? and maybe slightly weird b/c it took me forever to learn to pluck my chin hair b/c I thought it would be horribly painful (even after birthing two children).

Now see what kind of crazy confessions your readers are coming up with? Clearly you need to keep writing.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHeather

I love blow back.

Plus, I blog when I damn well feel like it.

Could be something. Could be nothing.

It is your blog. Do as you will with it.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterDustin


I read this on from the Actual Pastor on Tuesday and thought, "lucky me, I don't have an audience. I write for myself". One day later, after one comment from a blogger I admire, I'm locked up by imagining her as my audience and wanting to please her with my next post...

you're doing great, just do what you do when you do it :)

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSharona Zee

Thank you for this post. I think we (at least I know I am) have been struggling a lot with this lately. I feel like I don't have any stories to share. Or any stories that I *want* to share. And I'm so aware of my audience. You know... family. While I'm always honest and truthful on my blog it's really just like, 10% of my life. Tonight I want to write another post about how much I'm sad that I am not at Mom 2.0 this year but I think I'll start frightening people if I keep talking about this!
You're awesome and please keep writing. xo

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLoukia

I am so glad you clicked publish this time. This is absolutely what I needed to read. I've been blogging, but so scared to face the really hard parts of me and my life and why I began blogging in the first place. So, anyway, thanks for clicking publish. Now I need to go think about my courage.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterChelyagogo

I've only started blogging and already there are a bunch of things I can't write about for fear if what family/friends will think, and really they are the only ones reading LOL. So, I'm stalled. It can be tough to be honest.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea

I haven't ever known how to blog bravely. You've done it before, and I'm sure you'll do it again. And it's OK if you don't, too.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterNichole

I like what you share, whenever you want to share it. I'm in the group that gets excited when feedly shows a new post up from you.

I talked to a young man I know tonight, one about to head off to college, and reminded him that he should always help the person in the street with the wheelchair (and anyone else who needs it) and, though he does it now, hold the door for people. Sharing our experiences matters! Please keep on writing!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterT.L.

It's oddly reassuring to know you (and apparently many others) feel this way even though you've been doing it for a while. I get publish fright and have wondered if it will ease as I do it more. But I guess on some level it's just the nature of the beast. Thanks for publishing this one!

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAmy

I've done the same thing a number of times. Most days I feel like my life is so mediocre that I have nothing to say period. It's nice to know I'm not alone though.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterHanan

I love to read your blog! I think you should write what you feel. If others don't like it then they don't have to read it. Right?
I have heard that hairy toes means that you have good blood flow in your feet-just saying. Gotta go shave my toes now! ;0)

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKelli

I stopped blogging because:

The pressure was getting to me. My 6th baby was born medically fragile and I blogged like a fiend while she was in hospital for the first two months because I could do that sitting next to her warmer/incubator/cot. Then I got home with her on continuous feeds with a feed pump from the stone ages, still expressing every three hours, the host of needs that she had, five other kids who were traumatised and a husband who was as shell shocked as I was - and I had people complaining that I wasn't blogging enough anymore.

I felt like my life had become a reality show. People I know would read my blog, laugh, cry, feel emotional catharsis, then switch off their computer and go about their day. Nobody called me, nobody dropped off a salad, nobody did anything that required more than ten minutes effort on their behalf. Except complain that I didn't blog enough.

My grandmother wrote to me scolding me for "threatening violence" on my blog. What I actually said was when people are holding down your kid, doing painful things to her and she's screaming - you have to suppress the urge to punch them in the face, even when you know they are helping her. Apparently the nuance was lost on her. Yes, one old lady grabbed the wrong end of the stick but the one old lady was my grandmother and it made me doubt myself as a writer....and want to punch her in the face. Blogging made me want to punch old ladies in the face.

One of my best friends also misconstrued something and called my husband to complain that I was blogging nasty things about his wife. I wasn't. What I actually said was a friend ringing up and complaining that her toddler was climbing on the dishwasher, if it catches me at the wrong time, makes me want to tell them if my kid ever does that I will take a photo and give them a freakin' lolly - but I reacted the same way when my able bodied first born did that so I get where she is coming from.

So I was doubting every single keystroke and it was getting to me.

I want to blog again some day. I feel like I have stuff to say, I love writing and I miss it and people did like what I wrote. But for now, I can't handle the damage it does to my calm.

Your blog is fantastic. I was right there with you with the toe hair, the dog poop and the carwash and everything else you said today. Whenever you hit publish, I will read it. When you don't, I won't complain and will re-read old posts about smurf coloured twats. Thank you for having the courage to blog honestly. It is bloody hard to do.

May 2, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterJess

"It's like I've forgotten how to blog honestly, the way I used to, because I'm paralysed by who will read it."
I have deleted my version of this post so many times... for all of the same reasons, but for this one in particular.
I opened my dashboard to note that I had drafts going back *2 years* and had not managed to hit post in over a year. A year.
I'm so tired of being my own worst blogging enemy.

Love you for writing this my sister.

May 3, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterLucretia

I have so many questions...mainly I'd like to know if you ever got that email from the principal because now I'M curious.

Like everyone else I was nodding in agreement through the parts of this post that talk about how to continue to write what you want, when you're feeling it. It's a tricky road to navigate now for sure.

I skipped the mention of your t-o-e because I don't know if you know this about me but I'm repulsed by feet. You wouldn't guess it by looking at me, but aside from the penis, I believe feet are the least attractive body part. So while you're censoring yourself...maybe just remember I don't like feet.

May 3, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterKat

I don't have nearly as poetic a comment as Kevin. But, I feel you. I haven't blogged in months. I'm paralyzed and I don't know how to move past it. Keep on keepin' on.

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