Why I Still Blog

So last week I hopped on an airplane, travelled across the continent and braved TSA agents everywhere to drink mojitos and talk for an hour about why I still blog.

Here's the thing though, I didn't really have an answer. Some of that was likely due to the mojitos I slurped back. And some of that was likely due to be tongue-tied due to the sheer brilliance radiating off of the lovely Katherine Stone and Cecily Kellogg, who shared a stage with me.

But a lot of it was due to the fact I can't really explain why I still blog. My pat answer is, blogging saved my life. I was isolated, grieving and desperately alone months after my son died and I was looking for a human connection. A spark. Something, someone who could, would encourage me to soldier on. Someone who could inspire me to wipe my tears. Someone who could promise me my life didn't end just because my son's did.

I didn't find any of that, not at first. But I did find blogging. Through the words of others I started to find my own words. And I slowly rebuilt my life, my joy and my identity, one word at a time. It was a long process and it isn't over yet. I am smart enough now to realize it likely never will be. Grief doesn't quit just because I'm bored with it.

Eventually, through my blog, I had built a community, made friends, and combated the isolation that threatened daily to engulf me. And best of all, I found myself. It was like looking in a mirror and seeing myself for who I was instead of the fractured mother everyone else around me saw.

And so I blogged. And blogged. And blogged some more. Years passed; opportunities came, awards were received, accolades given. And yes, money was even made.

I've been plugging away at this blogging thing longer than my son lived.

So why do I still do it?

I don't do it for the numbers. The stats, the hits, the subscribers, the followers. Those numbers freak me out. Because I've learned no matter how good I think my numbers may be? Someone's are always better. Chasing someone else's success is a quick way to ensure you will never be satisfied with your own, I've found.

I don't blog for the money. Because I mostly don't make any money on my blog anymore. I've a few ads, but any revenue accrued from those is always donated in my son's name. And oddly enough most brands out there don't find my particular charm of dead kids, disabilities and dildos all that appealing.

Heck, a PR exec at this last conference handed his business cards to the women on either side of me, took one look at my name tag and put his cards into his knapsack. He later explained he was running out of cards. And why waste them on me? *(He later tossed one in my purse like he was doing me a favour, but dude, I guarantee you the only thing I'll be doing with that card is passing it around and telling everyone what an arsehole you were.)

So I'm certainly not blogging to make brand relationships, although I cherish the one's I have made. Sears Kenmore, DeVries and Van Houtte, you all rock for embracing the often unembraceable.

Making money is awesome because I tend to err on the greedy capitalistic side, always wanting moar dollarz but mostly the money I've earned has been inspite of my blog as opposed to because of it.

Professional blogging. I'm doing it wrong.

Most of the hundreds of pennies I've made from this blog have been due to speaking gigs and freelance jobs, and yes, the Babble and Momversation work I've done. My blog is now my resume. The most cartoony, yellow, unprofessional resume I can possibly have. Complete with boob talk and pictures of my hairy toes and armpits.

(I am a sexy beast.)

So if I'm not getting famous or making tonnes of money blogging; the PR people shun me, brands consider me feral, and my children are starting to dip their toes into the pool of adulthood, why am I still doing this?

Why do I still blog?

I blog because I like sharing my stories. Because I believe there is value in the minute and women's voices need to be heard. I blog because I have a voice. I blog for those who can't. My disabled sons. I blog for all the people out there who may one day find themselves isolated and alone and wondering where they will find the strength to carry on for just one more moment.

I blog because I can. Because I like to. I like the community, the feedback, the power that comes from collectively sharing our voices and the power that reverberates with all of our words.

It's all of this and it's even simpler still.

I blog because every time I sit down at my keyboard I find a bit more of myself. I remember who Tanis Miller once was and now is and every word I read and write brings me just a little closer to the person I one day hope to be.

That's why I still blog.

Getting to fly across the country to drink hotel mojitos, make new friends and talk blogging talk is just an added bonus.

Thank you for everyone who was in that conference room cheering Cecily, Katherine and myself on. You all continue to be part of the reasons I do what I do.