It’s a fantastic, glamorous looking website with lots of encouraging posts about self belief, positivity, how to sculpt your life, acceptance and giving back. There are also some sunny photographs of beaches and mountaintops, smiling people radiating happiness, freedom and fun, but this doesn’t address why.
Why was I compelled to create this website in the first place?
Why would I devote my energies to sharing my innermost thoughts, feelings and experiences for strangers to read and judge?
Why bother? Who cares anyway?
My ‘why’ is completely selfish. I simply wanted to be around others like me – people who ‘got’ me. I wanted to find my tribe. The other square pegs in round holes. I wanted to speak to people who cared more deeply about things than which celebrity had gotten thrown out of the jungle the night before. I wanted to find a way to shout out from the rooftops that appearance isn’t everything, and if I’m honest, to stick two fingers up at the people who thought it was. This was my initial ‘why’.
Since then, I have relaxed a little. Become less judgemental. Embraced and accepted and found some peace. Just because you watch a TV show and chat the next day about who said what to whom and who got evicted, it doesn’t mean you don’t also care deeply about other things. Just because you make the best of your appearance it doesn’t mean you don’t also have depth.
We all have our own inner struggles, we all tread our own paths and it’s not for anyone to judge another. That bit of lighthearted gossip about which celebrity left the TV show last night may be the one easy thing that person has been able to speak about that day. It provided some light relief within a day of heavy and draining subjects. Putting on a full face of make-up, taking time to curl the eyelashes, straighten the hair and contour the cheeks may be an act of self preservation not vanity – literally putting on her war paint before facing the outside world who has no idea the inner pain that she is going through.
We are all dealing with something. Abandonment, cancer, homelessness, neglect, abuse, heart disease, exploitation, bullying, low self esteem, bankruptcy, overwhelm, being a carer for another human being, drug addiction, loneliness… The list goes on. We all have our private battles that no-one else knows about, which is why I believe we should all try to practice kindness, tolerance, be non-judgemental and do good – not evil.
In a time of high security alerts, terrorist activity, civil unrest and trial by media I wanted to have faith that the world I’m raising my children in wasn’t a lost cause. I created this website to do my bit to add balance. You can go into the universe and find plenty of news outlets and blogs that preach the bad. The criminal. The worst of humanity. So this website is my contribution to the good. I don’t expect this one website to wipe out all the negativity, but on a personal level, it is me, doing my own little part to add my voice – and share my hope.
I have worked as an editor and blogger for the last 7 years and built a platform called JuggleMum – my personal lifestyle blog. This was my creative outlet when I found myself at home with a baby again, and in need of some adult interaction. Through JuggleMum I started working with brands, using my marketing and organisational skills from another life, sharing stories and creating a community of people – mostly mothers like myself, but people who could relate. JuggleMum showed me the power of creating a platform. Of sharing your voice and this is what I intend to do with this website.
My vision for this website is to share stories and information, so that people who can relate to the content within it can not only find the answers they seek, but also feel less alone. I’m extending a virtual hand of kindness and acceptance to them. I’m paying it forward.
Through doing this work in my personal life, I have found peace. I look at recent photos of me and can see calm. There are no hard edges – no set jaw, no tension held in the face or body. I look at myself now and see the 9 year old girl I used to be – trusting, carefree and innocent but with a womanliness and understanding that only comes from life experience. I feel that it is my responsibility to share what I have learned, how I got here and how I continue to work on myself to work out my issues, so that others who don’t know where to start have some kind of map to guide them.
I have come to learn that no-one can do the work for you. Happiness really is an inside job, and there are no short cuts. But by facing the things you haven’t yet been able to face and processing your emotions about those things, you can find a new way to live that contains more ease. More kindness, more compassion, less struggle and more flow. It all starts with loving yourself.