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When I was 14 I got my first supermarket job. I worked on the checkout at a place called 3 Guys. I was living in New Zealand and I saved my first two months wages to buy my very own bike.
I worked every Saturday as well as twice a week after school and to be honest, I loved my job. I was really good on the checkouts and it’s one job I look back to with fondness.
It was 1997 and our supermarket played the same songs over and over. One of the songs was Torn by NATALIE IMBRUGLIA.
I loved the song torn, I don’t know why but in some ways I kind of related to those words.
22 years later, I still relate. I can still listen to that song and the words still ring true.
At the moment I feel torn. I’m not torn in respect of a relationship but I am torn in respect to my health.
I am torn between two worlds.
- The world of chronic illness.
- The world of blogging.
It really does not matter how much I try, I am still not used to the fact that my life was turned upside down after collapsing and being diagnosed with Adrenal Insufficiency.
It’s been almost six years and I can’t get used to or accept how unwell I am. I always fight it and the grieving process is still very raw. I want to be the Angela I was before I became unwell, before my life changed but I can’t be.
It’s so easy to say, this is how life is, get used to it but I don’t know how or when I will get used to being someone who is housebound 80% of the time.
It’s so hard sometimes. Some days I just live my life, sleep, rest, blog, parent and do what I can, pacing myself as I go. Other days I push myself and I try so hard to feel normal once more but the reality is I can’t be.
I feel frustrated. I feel torn. Torn between two states of existence, the chronically unwell mother and the healthy, “normal” mum who could walk down the street, visit friends and family without feeling burnt out and drive to the store, go shopping and do all the normal things people do. (Things that I now have to plan days in advance to be able to achieve).
I am frustrated and it’s just difficult for me at this time.
Torn As A Blogger
I feel so torn right now as a blogger. The very reason I began blogging in the first place was to write about life, say how I feel and share my story. However as a blogger you get to a point where the very reason you began to blog is ripped from under you and you’re left thinking what on earth am I doing?
At some point along this blogging journey, brands began to contact me. We began to review products, collaborate with companies and mix the original purpose of the blog with business.
Being chronically unwell should in a perfect world equal support and help and blogging should and could be a hobby. However I do not live in a perfect world and we need to pay for medication and treatment which is not funded by the NHS.
Therefore I am constantly torn between writing what I want, for the love of writing, and advertising, promoting and sharing content on the blog which will bring an income to the family.
Will I Ever Figure It Out?
I constantly have an anxious feeling where I question myself and my blog and ask myself, “will I ever figure it out”. You may be wondering figure what out? I really don’t know!
I often feel I need to work out what the heck I’m doing. I am pulled to writing about life, then pulled in the direction of crafts. I feel frustrated that some of the posts that I feel most passionate about are read the least. Then some posts I share are read a lot more, but are not as close to my heart.
I’m told to niche down. I have interests, so many and in my mind I attempt to focus on a topic or subject but I simply can’t do it. I wonder if it’s connected to having anxiety or if this feeling of unease and confusion is just part of the journey.
I wonder will I ever work out a specific direction for my blog? Will I put people off because I write about so many different topics and passions and will this prevent genuine people from following me?
If it does then it does but I cannot settle into one topic. I can’t seem to do just crafts, just reviews, just life, just travel or just recipes. I need to share a whole range of things and I think that’s because I love variety.
When it comes to products in the home and clothing, I have brands and styles I love and I will repeat these over and over, however with blogging I just don’t have one topic I can write about or create content for enough that I would feel satisfied.
I guess I am constantly reading and being told that I need to niche down to grow and get better traffic, to earn a better living, to be better.
But why is this not enough?
Why can’t I just do me, write about all the different parts of life as life evolves and changes? The majority say you can’t and in doing so I am going against the grain but maybe I am just not the average person, the average healthy person, the average blogger or the average worker?
I’m me, yet the messages in the world around me tell me that me is not right, not okay and so I feel torn.
How will I ever and can I ever just accept me as I am? It is possible? It goes around and around in my head and I think it may be anxiety, maybe I need some form of counselling again to help me accept life as it is.
Accept my chronic illness.
Accept the things I can no longer do.
Accept that I am overweight due to steroids and that I am not likely to ever reach a healthy BMI again.
Accept that my blog is different to many others.
Accept that I am a different kind of Mum than what I wanted to be.
Accept that I will never have a 9-5 job and I will also never be able to work as a blogger the same way a healthy person (blogger can).
Accept that I can’t have any more children.
Accept that life is not as I planned but be happy with the life I have.
And yet I feel torn, torn torn torn like a piece of paper that is ripped into shreds and cannot quite be put back together.
I feel confused and torn and hopefully one day I can figure me out and not feel so anxious and stressed over life. Until then I will do my best and keep trying.