Why Do I Blog? (Or Killing Two Birds With One Stone)

Write about what blogging means to you. Why do you blog? What purpose does it serve you and how have you benefited from sharing a piece of yourself online this way?

This was one of the ideas for MamaKat’s Writer’s Workshop and it also just happens to work out perfectly for Invisible Illness Week.

I started going online for support in earnest around Christmas of 2004 when I told my family that I was not going to be able to travel out of state to see them this year because I was just took sick.  “Um, yeah, okay, don’t you just have Arthritis?” was the reaction I was getting.  I had Rheumatoid Arthritis, the two being as alike as an anthill and a mountain.  They just didn’t understand and they didn’t believe me, and it really hurt.  I started to find places online where there were others like me, especially But You Don’t Look Sick? and it was finally a place where others understood.  I took support, and I gave it too.

In 2008 I could no longer work.  Does being sick give you creativity or does having more time on your hands free your brain to become more creative?  I don’t know the answer to that but I suddenly found myself wanting to write, and I had never written before.  Not just about being sick but about being a mom, and my life with my family.  I owe it to Jill Asher, one of the founders of the former Silicon Valley Moms Group, who gave me my chance.  I submitted some writing samples and I was accepted!

Last year, I finally had the courage and confidence to start this blog.  It’s been hard always being able to write since I am sick but I have kept on with it, trying to write about three to four posts a week.  What I get from blogging about being a mom with a chronic illness is immeasurable.  It is a way to let out my anger and frustrations for myself and to share them with others.  It is a way to reach people who are like me.  When I get comments from people telling me, “I feel the exact same way” or “You write what I cannot say, thank you!”, it sustains me and motivates me to keep my blog going.

I also write for healthy people.   To show them what it is like to be chronically ill.  Not just the pain, but the other things chronic illness takes from you; your job, your money, the things you used to love but can no longer do.  To show them the challenges I face daily raising my son, and the guilt I feel over things beyond my control.  To be a voice that speaks to healthy people and let them know that WE ARE HERE!

And mostly, to show all people, that I am more than my illness.  I am a Mother and a Wife and a Friend and a Daughter and I am living my life, maybe a bit differently than you are, but I am alive like you are.  I blog to bring the two sides together, so sick people and well people can find some common ground, and realize that we are not so different after all.

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About mamasick

Emily Cullen is a pen-name. I suffer from chronic illnesses and diseases which include Bipolar Disorder, Asthma, Diabetes and Fibromyalgia. I had battled Lupus and Rheumatoid Arthritis but there is no longer evidence of me having these diseases and my Rheumatologist has declared them to be "burnt out" of my system. I am separated from my husband, “Grant”. Our son, “Tyler” was born in September of 2006 and suffers from tics and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, and is delayed in fine and gross motor skills. In my blog I seek to let sick moms know that they are not the only ones going through this, and to educate people about what can happens when one becomes catastrophically ill. I also strive to break down stereotypes of what a “Welfare Mom” is like. Anything that I have gone through due to being sick, is written on the pages of Mama Sick.

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