Why I Blog
If you’ve read my About page, you know that ProbablyRachel was started when I received the advice in college: Write every day.
ProbablyRachel has grown and changed over the past few years (along with me), but at the end of the day, this little corner of the world is my hobby and I love to write, read, share and be inspired by the blogosphere.
That’s the “in-a-nutshell” answer to the question that Katie posed for her link up at He Calls Me Grace.
I decided to dig a little deeper though and finish an abandoned post on why I bother to blog about having diabetes. If you’re curious, read on…
Why I Blog About Diabetes
I might be one of the few “d-bloggers” who blogged before diabetes. For awhile, diabetes felt like the only topic I ever wrote about, now it appears once or twice a week with other topics sprinkled in.
Sometimes I feel like there are misconceptions about why I blog regarding my health, so I thought I would try to clear that up by explaining my motivation for blogging about diabetes.
The summer of 2011 was extremely tumultuous for me. (Quick recap: College graduation, marriage, moving, first job, diabetes diagnosis, my father died, loss of other relationships.) That summer was also the time when my little corner of the world at Probably Rachel rapidly expanded. I wrote what I was feeling and thinking and people read, commented and interacted with me. When I was catching up with a former boss about what had happened since I’d worked for him, the topic of my blog came up. He commented that it probably helped me deal with everything. And he was right.
Putting words on a screen helps me work out what’s happening in my life sometimes. Putting words on the screen about diabetes and the way it turned my life on end helps me process it. Now, nearly three years later, I’m still processing life with diabetes, complications, advances in my care, daily encounters and all of the things that I can and can’t control.
To Share News
My first blog post about diabetes was my diagnosis story. Aside from the phone calls, rumor chain and my waif-like appearance at my father’s funeral, no one really knew what had happened or how we found out. People didn’t know why it had happened, what type I had or how long I’d been diabetic. Many also didn’t understand the huge bubble of emotion surrounding the fact that I was frighteningly close to death… or the seriousness of DKA. “Oh, it’s just diabetes,” is not an okay way to brush off someone’s new diagnosis. I was hospitalized for several days and only a few people checked on me, sent cards or offered support because they didn’t get it.
I also used my blog as a venue for announcing and explaining the technology that I was using to manage my diabetes. It’s far easier to explain what the things attached to my body are in a blog post, than it is in a buffet line at a wedding reception or in the middle of a hello hug.
I love reading blogs around the DOC (diabetes online community) and I use mine to connect with other people who have diabetes. There are so many of you that I would not otherwise know, or have anything in common with, if it weren’t for diabetes.
When I started on a pump, then when I started on a CGM, I tried to post descriptions of what they do for me and how they work to help people in my life understand them. I also try to convey what life as a normal 20-something with a bum pancreas is a little different. I try to dispel myths on my blog as well.
Processing is good, it helps me deal with things… venting is also a good way to deal with things while hopefully educating, advocating and connecting…Sometime people say and do stupid things that I just need to vent about. Sometimes diabetes kicks my butt and I need to blow off steam about it, sometimes the venting leads to connecting and educating as well!
I want to be a part of the conversation. I want to contribute to a community of support. I want to bring awareness to organizations doing great things. I want to encourage participation and I want to encourage others who might be struggling with diabetes and who need to hear that they aren’t alone. Occasionally, I find that diabetes-related companies and organizations are reading this blog and I hope that it’s contributed some insight to how they operate as well.
Because I can
I blog about diabetes because I can and because of the reasons above (with many others).
But please be clear, I do not blog about diabetes to:
- Get pity
- Gain readers
- Open myself up to weight loss offers (but I get them anyway!)
Rachel, I love your explanation about why you blog. I think I’m going to write one too!
What I cherish the most about blogging is that you make these incredible connections with people you’ve never met. You may not know each other in real life or perhaps even would be friends, but here, you are. And it’s a kind of support that I think is part of our world these days.
There have been times in a store where I’d see something and say, “That looks like a Rachel DYI project” or “I bet X Instgram user would love that.” A motivating comment, whether we know it or not, can hold someone up when they feel like just crumbling into 100 pieces.
I’ve also come to blogging to heal and you have definitely been part of the journey. Thank you for blogging Rachel.
You’re a special soul, plan and simple! Thanks for the support and encouragement over the last few years. I should comment on your posts more. Take care and Godspeed.
Thanks Rachel… I blog for many of the reasons you describe here. I’m so glad you’re out here telling your story, diabetes or not. This is a great post. Thanks for the reminder that I need to come back here more often.
Thank you so much for sharing! I love this post and it is a great reminder to me.
What beautiful amazing reasons for why you blog. I imagine along the way you help so many people out there that have your same thing and they think wow i found someone to connect with!
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Great post. I feel like you really gave us a piece of yourself. Look forward to reading more from you this week.