It may sound odd but I started writing originally, as an outlet. Somewhere where I could write my most personal thoughts down and once I started, I found I couldn’t seem to stop. It never even occurred to me that I would actually bother publishing it. I mean who would want to listen to me waffling on? But 18 months down the line, I have and I now call it my online therapy. When my eldest son Oscar was born (almost 3 years ago) unbeknownst to us, he had Down Syndrome I literally thought my world was over. I wanted to run. Run out of the neonatal unit, down the corridor, out the door of the hospital and keep going. It was a fear of the unknown I guess. Fear of the future and what lay ahead for us as a family. This wasn’t what i’d signed up for, I thought. I wanted a “normal” baby like everyone else. Not one less than perfect. Little did I know, 3 years on my little boy to me, IS perfect. I guess it was naive of me to think that life always goes the way we plan it too and even though my life looked slightly different from the way I thought it was going to look, I can now honestly say, hand on heart, that life is good. The blog has given me a voice, initially it benefited me and my need to get everything off my chest… but now it seems to have helped new parents dealing with a pre or postnatal diagnosis of Down Syndrome who feel that the future looks bleak. I’m told that seeing Oscar and hearing about his progression has been a comfort to them. I don’t sugar coat things though, sometimes life sucks… But doesn’t it for everyone at times? It’s also been about the re-education of people who haven’t necessarily got any connection with Down Syndrome. It’s about making them see that the world isn’t over or sad just because you have a child with Down Syndrome and that life very much goes on.
The MAD Blog Awards last year, was the first ever awards ceremony I had ever been too. I felt a bit of a fraudster, as i’d only been blogging such a short time in comparison to some of the blogging legends that were in the room, but I was thrilled to be a part of it nevertheless. I had started blogging at the beginning of that year and I was up for Best New Blog. I don’t think I really got the magnitude of the parenting blogging community until I attended that event and saw it for myself. These people all seemed to know each other and I wondered how?
Thankfully i’d had the foresight to buy a M&S Gin in a tin (Gin and tonic) for the train journey into London and that, combined with the glass of champagne on arrival, meant that mingling with complete strangers was eased in my slightly squiffy state
I had an amazing time, meeting fellow bloggers and sponsors of the event. It honestly didn’t occur to me for one second that i’d actually win. But I did!!! Crazy and ridiculous. But so incredibly touched and honoured (if slightly inebriated by the time I collected by award as I genuinely didn’t think I was going to have to walk up on stage and deliver a speech. Goodness knows what I actually said)
And so one year on, I find myself nominated again. This time though for blog of the year. Little old me in the final 6 for Blog of the year? Double crazy. I’ve seen the competition and it’s tough. These ladies are heroes and undoubtably, are more deserved to be in this category. But I honestly do thank each and every one of my followers, likers, friends and family that took the time to vote for me to get me into the final. Thank You all
The MAD Blog Awards 2015 are taking place in September this year and there is little more I can do now… other than choose the obligatory new dress (eeeeekkkk) which of course, is one of the top priorities (I know this sounds very sad but hey, with 2 toddlers and a baby on the way, I don’t get out much). The Blog of The Year is chosen by a panel of judges, unlike all the other categories that are calculated on the numbers of votes, so thankfully, I can now sit back and relax and wait for the awards themselves. Please do take the time to look at the blogs and categories the MADS are showcasing, as theres some amazing ones in there. Hey you could even vote for your favs, I know I will be
When I walked into the ceremony last year , if you remember, I had wondered how all these people seemed to know each other. They had all met virtually and were now friends. I liked that. Amongst the bloggers in that room, they all wrote about different things – Some were about getting through the day with small children. Coping with them, holidaying with them, feeding them, photographing them but then there were some I knew very little about and perhaps opened my eyes to a different world again – post natal depression, additional needs, single parenting, having a baby who was born sleeping. Such wide and diverse subjects that thankfully I now have an insight into from following other peoples stories. They all have one common connection though… We are all parents. We all “get” this mad journey we call life and for that I know I for one, am extremely grateful
Good luck to all the bloggers in all the categories. I’ll be following your posts with continued interest and can’t wait to see you all again in september x
To see who the MAD Blog Awards 2015 Finalists are, see link below