One of the things about blogging I love is the unique platform it gives to women. Lifestyle bloggers are predominantly female. We write about things that interest us, share our personal style, and the lives of our families with our readers.
But there's also something that really bothers me about lifestyle blogging.
I read two separate posts lately about the amount of fakery that goes into blogging. One by fellow midwesterner Gabrielle, which notes the level of body-altering photoshopping that some people do to their personal style posts. (I thought the whole point was to be yourself?)
And another post about the perfectionism that seems inherent to lifestyle bloggers, making those of us in the real world feel less than if our houses aren't always clean and our kids don't look like Quinoa the well-dressed toddler. (I can't wait to read that book!) Sometimes we lifestyle bloggers are laughably formulaic.
That being said, I'm not here to criticize other bloggers, and I realize that all of those pretty pictures are a great way to escape reality. I am a big fan of Martha Stewart and all of her acolytes. I think the problem comes when you start comparing yourself to others - something we as women do almost subconsciously.
As I round the corner onto the final stretch toward 40, I am learning to own who I am. I am learning to accept the fact that my marionette and frown lines are just going to be there, because I refuse to succumb to the allure of plastic surgery. That my waistline isn't going to be 24 inches, because I refuse to deny myself the pleasure of the foods I enjoy. That I'm moody, and sometimes depressed. That I can be judgmental and self-involved - things I'm working on, while simultaneously forgiving myself for being human.
Some of that makes it into this blog. Some of it is edited. But nothing in my life is perfect. How boring would that be?
Because, in that picture above - without any makeup or retouching, I'm starting to acccept the person that I am. I am learning that what other people think doesn't matter. And I am learning how to be a role model of healthy middle-age, so that my own daughter will look at the flipping calendar with anticipation instead of dread. Above all, I want to be a happy old person.
What's on the inside matters more than ever when the flower of youth begins to fade.
And no retouching tool, makeup, or well-draped dress can cover up who a person truly is.