Thursday, April 20, 2006

Too Much? Too Little? Just Right!

Edited to add the following thoughts on the blogs I link to: I LOVE the Daring Adults/Parents and Raising Special Kids blogs I link to (in fact - I love ALL the blogs I have listed on my sidebar)! These bloggers get it right in my book - a little of this, a little of that - lots of information on all sorts of relevant topics: disability, parenting, and life in general. You guys rule!


Some comments on my on-going search to find other disabled individuals who keep blogs.

All in all, I'm saddened to see so few disabled bloggers out there. There are some, but not as many as I would have first imagined.

Of those I've found, many of the sites seem to be more along the lines of self-developed web pages than true, "fancied-up" blogs. Nothing too pretty, and some downright boring looking. But that's okay - looks don't matter as much as content. Then again, the look of a blog is useful when getting readers to want to stop on your site, browse around, stay awhile, and come back for more.

As for content, I've seen the two extremes. People who "rant" only on issues relating to the disability culture...

...And those who hardly ever mention their disability at all. In fact, unless you have a long history with the blog(ger) in question, the average reader may never even realize they're reading the blog of a disabled person.

I personally don't like the "all disability all the time" blogs. I just don't think someone's disability needs to be thrust in your face every single day whether it really relates to a given issue or not. Yes, disabled people have a tougher time in society in general than the able bodied person. And there's lots there that can make a disabled person angry - about society, their health, their challenges, and life in general. But there is so much more to life to look at too. Take a look at the beauty life can offer and not just the "woe is me" stuff you've got going on for yourself.

Then again, if someone is disabled in anyway, it sure would be nice to know that bit of information. Not because it matters, really. Because it doesn't. But just because it's a unique side to your story that can add some color and flavor to your everyday life stories. Let your readers know what challenges you need to overcome during your day. Let us know your life isn't all sunshine and roses all the time - or even how you strive to make your life rosy despite the physical and/or mental challenges life has presented to you. Your readers wll be interested to know.

What I hope I'm doing here on my own site is achieving a happy balance between the two extremes. I try not to talk too too much about my disability - letting you, my faithful readers, know that I'm just your average mom like any other out there. I love my daughter and get frustrated with her just as much as any other parent out there relates to their own kid(s).

But at the same time, I want you to know what I'm going through. The challenges I face, the feelings and frustrations I grapple with as a disabled mom - as a disabled person. Hopefully other disabled adults and parents reading my blog will be able to relate to what I'm going through and feel not so very alone in the world. My site, after all, is called Spina Bifida Moms. And my whole point in keeping this blog is for other disabled parents to find me and perhaps feel comforted and connected to someone much like themselves.

So - if you sometimes feel like I haven't held up my end of the deal because I haven't specifically mentioned my spina bifida lately - well, you've missed my point. I want to show my connection to the general population and the average parent. First and foremost I am a parent, regardless of what my physical challenges are. And that's what I write about.

But - if you feel that I sometimes play the disability card a bit too much - well, you've missed my point too. I want to mention my challenges, fears and setbacks (as well as achievements) concerning my physical disability. Especially with how these issues relate to my raising my healthy, active daughter. That, simply put, is why I set up this blog in the first place. To make it known to the world that disabled parents are out here, and we're doing great! Raising happy, healthy, wonderful children. I love telling my story, hearing from other disabled parents (or disabled adults considering parenthood) and simply connecting with others whom can relate to me and whom I can relate to myself.

Telling the good, the bad and the ugly of my life as a parent who happens to be disabled. That's what I want to do and what I feel I've been successful at doing with this blog. Hopefully I'm telling my story in an interesting, fun and informative way that EVERYONE can find worthwhile.

That's how I write. That's why I write. Hopefully I've hit the mark just right.

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