We bloggers are an opinionated bunch. Put a dozen of us in a room, give us any topic from homemade baby food to sexting, and we’ll erupt into a variety of opinions that we can debate for hours. Those powerful opinions are why most of us began blogging in the first place.
l never used to think of myself as an opinionated person. Family dinners in high school often went late into the night and evolved into spirited political discussions about the death penalty or abortion. My father loved to play devil’s advocate, sparring verbally with whomever ventured forth a viewpoint. And whenever he began to win the argument, he would maddeningly switch his stance, just to keep the debate going. On the other hand, I was the one always willing to concede, to grant my interlocuter the pleasure of having convinced me to see things their way.
Blogging changed all of that for me.
Confronted with the blinking cursor, I had to take a stand for what I believed in, put it out there for all to see and debate. It was terrifying at first, but I grew more confident, and eventually that confidence seeped into my offline conversations. Now I’ll happily take on anyone at the dinner table to defend what I’ve said online and offline.
I used my blog, Chefdruck Musings, to hone my voice and speak out about topics big and small from the shocking number of hungry children in my state to the ease of grinding meat at home for tasty burgers. And people listened and commented on my blog, Twitter, and Facebook. But it wasn’t until I joined my voice to those of other moms through the Silicon Valley Moms Group blogs that I really felt the full power of the blogosphere. Individually we wrote blogs of varying influence, but collectively we were a force to be reckoned with, moms who were able to bring about change to school bullying policies, scouting programs, and environmental worries. We represented motherhood both locally and nationally, and when we spoke, people listened.
As editor the Silicon Valley Moms Group blogs, I heard all of these women’s voices, read them every night, and felt the pulse of parents in America. I was so upset when I was told the blogs would close, so worried that we would retreat back to our individual blogs, and our collective voice would lose its power. That’s why I was thrilled to join MJ and Kim in forming the Chicago Moms, to continue offering readers one place to hear from parents in Chicago, one jumping off point to discover local bloggers and hear about hot issues in the area.
Individually we’ll continue to blog about our kids, our cooking, and our schools. But collectively here, we can make a difference and be heard. I hope you’ll join us, either through your comments or as a contributor. I can’t wait to get to know you all both virtually and in real life.