The Not So Perfect Life

March 15, 2013

warm fuzzies: a nice cozy sweater with a pair of comfy jeans, a soft cushion, a pretty throw and a fuss-free pair of shoes

perfect for lounging about at home and still perfect enough if you had to get the door!

Sometimes I wonder if I’m being honest enough on the blog. I do my best to keep it real. I do filter a few things – mainly out of respect to my family. But for the most part I think this blog is a pretty accurate reflection of me. I tell you when things aren’t going great – the past few weeks have been an example of that. I’ve shared one of my greatest insecurities here too. I don’t blog about arguing with my husband, mostly because we don’t. I don’t want to paint an image of a certain type of life. What I do want to stress is that a lot depends on how we deal with things.

I’m struggling with infertility at the moment and I have been very rational and composed about it. Yes, I’m upset but at the same time I haven’t treated it as the end of the world. On the contrary. I’ve been thankful every single day since we got the news that I have had such a healthy body for 26 years. I’ve looked at it as: For my body to be this healthy, something had to give, and if fertility is the price I’ve had to pay for this amazing and healthy body, that’s a price I’m willing and thankful to pay. Leaving my darling husband, amazing online friends and blog turned into real life friends and a few family members, I’ve been doing this on my own. Sure it sucks. But it’s just how it is.

I was at a blogger brunch on Monday, and the issue of how bloggers portray themselves and their lives came up. And it really got me thinking. Am I doing enough to be really honest on here? I know that  not all of us really want to lay all the cards on the table (and not all of us really want to read that kinda thing). But are we doing enough to say “this is tough”, “I’m going through a tough patch”, or “I need help”. We do a lot to encourage each other with our positive happy success stories. Should we open up a little more and perhaps share (generally or specifically) our more vulnerable sides, and encourage each other that way too?

If I were to be completely honest with you now and tell you something that’s not going well in my life, I’d say: I still cry myself to sleep every single night thinking about how my infertility will be viewed by everyone else

What would you say? How would you answer the above question?
Do you think bloggers in general, paint too much of a ‘perfect’ life picture?

Feel free to be honest, I’m curious 

37 comments

  • Megan

    I have always tried to be honest on my blog that things aren't perfect in my life, I mean really who does have it all? I think some people try to concerntrate on the good things on their blog because its their happy place and I completely respect that.
    I definitely think you portray yourself honestly on here Vanisha and I think having meet you in real life I know that you are being "real" on this blog.
    I think you are so brave to share your infertility issues on here but at the same time you are giving a voice to the other women going through what you are going through, not to mention doing it with such a positive attitude, I admire that!
    So if I was to answer your question about something that's not going well I would say that I worry every day about my weight no matter how hard I try not to care about it – it niggles at me once a day. Every day I have to concentrate on not concentrating on my body shape/size. Its a battle I usually win but I wish there was no battle at all.

  • Jenn from Much to My Delight

    There's a quote floating around regarding online posting that I like: "Don't compare your behind-the-scenes to someone else's highlight reel". Yes, I do feel like most blogs emphasize the positive, fun things happening in lives, and for the most part that doesn't bother me. I like to focus on the positive too. But I definitely have a major appreciation for writers and bloggers who give a fuller, more honest perspective on things. Seeing the not-so-great side makes the good times even sweeter. Sorry you're having a rough patch. I've had a lot of friends struggle with infertility and it must be painful. Feel free to write all about it here–I'll read:)

  • The Life of Clare

    Our blogs are our spaces to share, we can share as little and as much as we want I think. It is so lovely however, to read open and honest blog posts, getting to know the bloggers just a little bit more.

    I think so much of your openness depends on the general focus on your blog and how that links to each post. Maybe I might write about the dinner I cooked last night, with tears running down my face (knowing that J was going away again). But I just don't need to share that much information.

    I find that I share a lot more openly with my blog friends who I chat to daily on twitter, maybe tidbits appear on my blog and I elaborate through social media.

    What a lovely open post, V!

  • mummawoosah

    V – my "fairy blog mother" I have met you once and I can honestly say you are the 'same as you are in real life as you are on screen' – truth. I am so new to this whole blogging thing, one of my greatest fears was that I would portray an image of something that I'm not. Blogger or not, I think it's all too easy to just smile, nod, say 'it's ok'…show the pretty side of things. Yes of course we need to 'choose our audience' (be that in real life or on screen) but my take – on anything – "to thine own self be true"…no illusions, no pretence, no masks. some may hate it, some may love it. but when it comes down to it, if YOU are happy with that decision, that's all that matters….whoah deep for a Tuesday night!!

    xxMaddy

  • Zoe

    Wow, what a post… I can't imagine what you're going through Vanisha.

    Sometimes I think it's really hard to admit to ourselves that things aren't working the way we had planned, I know I am the sort of person who keeps it together until I say things out loud, so maybe people feel the same way about blogging. If we talk or blog about the bad stuff it might make it all too real.

    I think it's an important step though, I'm so new at this whole blogging thing, but I do find the whole community is so supportive and this would be a great place to talk about the real life things as well as the fun and exciting things. Maybe as I grow a little more as a blogger I will be able to do this better.

    I hope that we can all support you in any way we can xx

  • Sabeen

    Beautiful post 🙂 You are as real as they come V. It will not be easy facing your dad and his family,hold your head up high and don't forget, what happened is not in your hands. Never let anyone let you believe otherwise.

    I absolutely love all your amazing plans for the future, may God always be on your side.

    Hugs xxx

  • Becca

    Oh Vanisha! I am so so sorry to hear this, you are one strong lady. I absolutely adore your blog and have done since I first saw it, you're so honest about everything.

    I do agree that some blogs do portray a perfect life and it does annoy me as there are only so many posts I can read like that. At the end of the day I don't have to follow them!

    I hope both your friends and blogging community help you through this, I'm thinking of you xxx

  • Rachi

    Sending you a big hug V. I can't imagine what you are going through. I totally admire your honesty and courage in writing about this. You are definitely one of the most honest bloggers I have had the pleasure of coming across and you inspire me to be the same.

    If I was to be completely honest about something that's not going well in my life it is the fact that I'm sick of all the sh*t I get from my family (and "well meaning" friends) about the fact that I'm still single "at my age". In certain people's eyes, everything else I've achieved in my life don't stack up against the fact that I don't have a husband or children. It really upsets me on a daily basis to be judged so harshly for this. I've been toying with the idea of blogging about this very personal thing, have even drafted a post on it but haven't hit the publish button yet because I'm worried about offending the culprits who I know will read it…

    But you have inspired me to be honest and not to gloss over just the pretty side of my life. Anyway, this comment has turned into an essay. I can't wait to see you tomorrow and give you a big hug! xoxo

  • Catriona @ Precious Impressions

    Vanisha, I don't think you portray a picture perfect life on your blog. You are one of the most open and honest bloggers I've come across. I am really sorry to hear about your fertility issues and I am sending you hugs, positive vibes and prayers. It actually takes alot to share personal details on a blog, I was sick last year and I just didn't have the courage to tell my readers what actually happened to me. There are a few bloggers who paint the perfect picture but I tend to gravitate towards the 'real' bloggers.

    Take care
    xx

  • tiarenie

    Hi Vanisha,

    I've been staring at this comment box for a few minutes because I wish I had some better words of encouragement for you! I know that family can sometimes be the roughest bunch and the ones that have the power to sting the most. However, no matter how your dad treats you or reacts to the situation, you must know that he loves you – he is your father!

    I think the best and most respectable bloggers are honest bloggers. Keep doing what you're doing!

  • Sam

    Hi my dear, I am in admiration of your honesty. Its really brave and courageous of you to be truthful about whats going on in your life and I think if you have a share this rough patch, this is the place to do it, because you are surrounded with an amazing and warm support group of friends and bloggers. I am thinking of you in my prayers, I know of many cases close to home like yours, and there has been hope, please don't be despondent and give up, you will receive a miracle, it only takes patience and time. Big hugs doll!

  • Jacki

    Vanisha, I hate to hear that you are dealing with infertility – that sucks, flat out. I feel like this is a more common struggle than many of us realize and I admire you for being open about what you're dealing with. Whatever the next steps for your family are, or aren't, I'm sending you warm thoughts and good vibes and all that good stuff!

    You always seem to strike a very good balance, to me – being respectful of what's private in real life while still being candid online, and I've always liked that about your blog. That's what I strive for too. To be respectful of the private parts of life but candid and open. There are definitely some folks who choose to paint a very "photoshopped" version of their lives online, and while that's their choice, it's not my favorite as far as reading material. Letting the vulnerable bits show through when appropriate is often how we connect with people in real life and can be true online too.

    One thing that isn't going so well in my life … uhh … well all of it feels a mess right now. Our pets are really causing a lot of stress at home, and I've let myself get out of shape which is causing me chronic pain. *sigh* Such is life, we're trying to work on solutions.

  • Marina

    Six months ago I was also thinking how to tell my family about not being able to have kids.. And for me, miracle happen. But, if that didn't happen, it wouldn't be the end of world for me. Sometimes it's the price we have to pay, unfortunately. Stay positive like you always are :*

  • Connie

    I have always found you as one of the most honest bloggers, and I do think this is why I feel like I know you for real, and not just like a blogger.
    I'm feeling sad that you have a hard time telling your family that you can't have children (is that finale, or are there still hope?), and yeah I do think that requires another post, a post where I again will learn more about the cultural differences.
    Your post have made me think about if I'm real enough on my blog. As you I don't write about fighting with my husband, but honestly we don't do much of it… at least nothing that we make a big deal of. But part of me not keeping real is probably that some of the readers I know in real life, and see on pretty much everyday, and some of the things I deal with I'm not always ready to share with them.

  • jamie-lee

    Vanisha, I'm really sorry to hear that you are having trouble conceiving – my cousins experienced the same thing although after two years finally are having a baby.

    I think out of all the blogs I read, yours is the most honest, you share the most, and you are the most real. I think perhaps it might seem like a lot of bloggers have the perfect life, but the fact is that you aren't obligated to post anything you don't want to, and a lot of people choose not to share their personal life. I know I do as I like to keep that as my business, rather than sharing it for the rest of the world to see.

    But that's just my two cents, and as I say, each to their own 🙂

  • New Life in Spain

    Big hug and lots of love your way Vanisha. I am sorry to read this, cause I know that you've wanted to have children for a long time.

    I think it's probably not always easy to be completely honest about 'negatives' on a blog, and I don't know if it's necessary either. I think each one of us need to find out how we feel about that. I enjoy reading honest posts about difficult things, and I also enjoy positive posts. (And I love the way you blog, and have done so for about 1,5 years 🙂

    Personally, I have a lot of silent readers who only show up when I write something a bit negative, and I can't really be bothered to have to defend myself and my opinions and experiences to strangers. Then I will rather talk to my friends and closest ones if something is bothering me and being hard, and keep it light on the blog and focus on the other things I want to have on my blog. Then again, my blog is not very personal, and was never meant to be, but about a new life in another country, so I guess that's quite different from more personal blogs.

    I wish you keep strong and that don't lose all hope. <3

  • Deidre

    I think it's one of the reasons I don't like fashion blogs and don't follow them a lot, because that's not what at least is reality for me. I don't got shopping all the time, I don't perfectly coif my hair or do my make up – honestly, it's not me.

    I think you've been incredible honest and brave here on your blog…

  • Leslie

    Hi Vanisha, First I have to say I try to visit as much as I can.. I am having a tough time getting one post out a week, working, and visiting all my friends in blog land.. so I apologize if I miss anything! Please forgive me:)

    Laying the cards on the table.. I think we all need to do that and support one another. As a blogger, it's easy to hide behind beautiful pictures but often there's lots more going on. I admire your honesty. I think I mentioned before that when I was younger.. my husband traveled a lot for his business. There is nothing worse..and the loneliness I felt was very unpleasant. Infertility is something that is very stressful (and costly). Most people don't realize the difficult process involved when dealing with this issue and the stress it puts on marriages.

    A little distraction may help calm the mind a bit but I understand it's tough to escape the feeling. Rest is so important and take lots of deep breaths.. hang in there.

    xxleslie

  • Stephanie

    Hi V

    When i read this post last night, i decided i wasn't going to comment but then read the post again today and changed my mind. I've met you several times over the last 12 months and i think you are pretty much the same person on your blog and in real life.

    You're a lot more open on your blog than i am, or will ever be if my life continues in the same pattern as it has for the last 6 years. I created mine as my escape from reality, a sort of therapy that allows me to focus on things other than the black hole i tend to see. I'm quite happy to read a blog that is void of any personal life stories, as long as its not a fashion blog because i'm not much of a fashionista

    But that's the beauty of blogging, there's always a blog out there to satisfy everyone's needs. I think its so easy to judge others externally and assume that based on their blogs, they have a perfect life. I'm personally not a fan of blogs that are heavy on the problems they are going through in real life cause i already have enough of that in my life. I wouldn't post most of the struggles i go through each day either, neither would i want to read it. That's simply because i'm a private person and a support system for some people in my life.

    But to answer your question, the last few weeks have been a slippery slope with me struggling hard not to fall into depression again. It would be great if i could just pause everything and step out of it because it feels like i'm going from one roller coaster ride to another

    Phew, this turned out to be much longer than i wished for

    I hope your doc appointment went well. Mum sends her regards

    xo Stephanie

  • Leslie

    Forgot to comment on the outfit at the top! It's so pretty and something you'd see me in!

    xxleslie

  • Fashion-isha

    I'm so so sorry. This all must be so painful. I think as bloggers we have the right to share as much or as little as we want, depending on what our blog is about and how comfortable you are with sharing. No judgments should be made either way. I wish you lots of luck and joy in your life!
    xo
    Sharon

  • kayleigh maryon

    I am really sorry to hear that Vanisha. You are such a wonderful person and have been such an inspiration to me. It is rough patches like this that remind us we are human and sometimes our bodies fail us when we least expect it. I can't pretend I fully understand what you are going through but it takes a brave person to open up like that on their blog.
    I feel like I am not always truthful when life gets me down but rather choice to share my happy moments. Maybe I should be a bit more honest as well.

  • Nicole | Pharr Away

    I do believe that it is easy to paint the perfect picture as a blogger and often times I see it being done, yet I have found some bloggers who I believe are very real and authentic (you being one), and I do my best to be the same.

    But, I try to be careful when it comes to sharing as I don't want to share too much, for the privacy of my family / friends, and I don't want my sharing to be viewed as negative, complaining or looking for a pity party, etc. So I try to remain as positive as any human can while sharing bits and pieces of my struggles here and there. I recognize that we all have them (struggles), and sometimes it's best to get it out so that other's can see that they aren't alone and it's also best to get it out for ourselves (blogging is therapeutic for some, especially me). In addition to that, a post about our struggles can be so inspiring simply because the writer had the courage to share! That's what I feel when I come here and read some of your posts!

    Hang in there, Vanisha, you and your husband are in my prayers!

  • Fiona

    Vanisha, my heart really breaks for you. What you're going through right now sounds really painful, and I really hate the fact that this issue with your father and his family is adding to that burden.

    I think it's definitely each-to-their-own when it comes to online sharing (although blatantly painting ones life as perfect feels to me like a bit of a sham). I tend to find I don't share the nitty gritty of my life, but I'll share travel ancedotes, hopes and fears and a few pictures. But I'm very aware people can "find me" online. Authentic positivity is, I guess, what I aim for, and what I find attractive in other blogs (like yours!) x

  • Lozzz123

    Ohh Vanisha I'm so sorry about your sad news. I really appreciate the honesty – I know what you mean about wondering how much to share. I've definitely avoided or glossed over negative things on my blog, but I often wished I didn't. You're in my prayers during this tough time 🙁

  • Samara

    Do I think you are being honest enough? Yes. I think you take time to think things over before you post them, which I think is wise. I feel that so many people mistake "being honest" with "over sharing" and are so honest that they are rude to people who may read their blogs. I think you are wise to think before you write.

    So sorry to hear that you are struggling with infertility. To be honest, I never know what to say to people when I find out that they are struggling except to send love your way, xx

  • Robert Smith

    Interesting post, I like your writing style….

  • Ashley

    I feel like you're always honest…that's one of the things I love about you and your blog.

    How long have you been struggling with infertility? I went through about 2 years before my Charlie.

  • Michelle

    Im really sorry to hear you've been feeling down lately. We all have our ups and downs sometimes Im a cranky stressed out b**ch and others Im happy go lucky and nothing gets me down. Its just lifes cycle I guess. I think your very honest and up front about life, while you might not give us the nitty gritty personal details your blog certainly still feels personal to me and that is why I have added you to my list of blogs that rock my world and why – you can read it here http://jarrahjungle.blogspot.com.au/2013/03/blogs-that-rock-and-why.html xx

  • Sara Louise

    I want to hug you right now.
    I keep my blog a positive place mostly because it's my escape. Le Petit Village is very much a real place, but The LPV I write about is only funny, quirky, and whimsical, not isolated, lonely, and difficult. I figure what's the point in having to deal with the negative bullsh*t in both parts of my life, if I only have to deal with it in one instead xoxo

  • Katrin

    First of all, I am so sorry Vanisha! I am thinking of you! You are such a wonderful person and you deserve the best!
    I think I have a pretty good image from who you are from your blog. I think it is pretty normal that bloggers don't share all their bad thoughts and feelings on their blog. Sure sometimes I do think that I should share more of my bad feelings but on the other hand I don't want to bother people with my problems. Which is pretty stupid from me because I know that people would be there for me. I have asked myself the same question you have and I really don't have an answer.

  • Marta

    I'm so sad to hear that you are struggling with infertility. I struggled to have my first son, it took us more than 2 years to finally get pregnant, I know how it feels to face infertility issues. You don't give too many details and maybe that is on purpose, but I just want to share something than one person once told me and which helped me a lot. My biggest fear when not getting pregnant was that I might never get the chance to be a mother. This person told me wisely that there are many ways to be a mother and if that is what I really wanted I would manage to be one, carrying my own child or not. Finally I was lucky enough to have two healthy boys, that I was blessed to carry each one of them for 9 months. Now I don't know what will happen to you, but you are so young and healthy so I can hardly believe that you will not be lucky as I am one day and become a mother. In any case, I wish you all the best, lovely Vanisha xx
    ps: regarding bloggers sharing their person lives, I guess it depends what kind of blog you are running but I do appreciate the personal aspect of your blog 😉

  • Lovely Light

    I struggle with this a lot. I'm a really private person. And I'm very independent and it's hard for me to be vulnerable to others (which I think has made it hard to make friends sometimes) Ex: my personal FB page has no pictures of me tagged! I have many readers of my blog who are family and friends, so that means I cannot treat it as an anonymous venue. Also, in my career as a counselor, I fear past and future clients finding my blog some day. So for several reasons, I try to find a quiet way to be myself on the blog- but I do wish I could express myself more sometimes.

  • Julie Keller

    First, I'm sending you a HUGE hug. It's the least I can do when you're going through something like this. I think we all go through this thinking: do we share enough, are we sharing too much. I actually struggle with this same thing with co-workers. Some of them know WAY too much about parts of my life, and then jump to conclusions about the rest of my life. Then, there's no way from stopping them thinking what they're already thinking – which is completely false. I hope you can come up with a solution for this. As for the rest, I don't think I can offer up much for way of advice. Hopefully your family can understand that this is something that is WAY beyond your control. Stay strong, stick with the people that care about you, and treat you how you want to be treated. I'm thinking about you.

  • Iliska Dreams

    I read your blog, because you seem real. Um let me explain, when I first started reading blogs I read all of the Beautiful ones, the lifestyle one with the seemingly 'perfect' lives. Now I read blogs that are honest.
    I don't think you have to share everything, I myself have not shared my fertility or should I say infertility story. But I think it is important that what you share is honest.
    Cry for you. Not for your family. My thoughts are with you. If you need someone to talk to, you have my email. I am a good listener if that is what you need.

  • chiara

    I'd say – share what you are comfortable sharing. You don't have to say everything. I think we are smart enough to know no life is perfect.
    And I am so sorry about your situation. I am sorry that on top of your pain you have to worry about what you family will think – as if you didn't have enough to think about already. Try to stay positive and keep being thankful for all you have!

  • Anonymous

    Hi sweetie, it's Flor… I'm so, so sorry to hear you're having to deal with all of this… I'm not sure whether it's definitive or not, but still, don't give up hope. Try to relax and get your mind off of it as much as you can. A good friend of mine and his wife got the same bad news a few years ago and now they have a beautiful 2-year-old.
    I honestly can't think of anyone more deserving of being a mum than you, and you're one of the strongest women I know. I just know you'll become a mother one day,one way or another…
    And as for your family, well, you're not Wonderwoman and no one should expect you to be. You don't have to justify yourself to anyone. Relatives don't get to judge you, ever, specially not on this. You haven't done anything bad.
    I know you'll find the strength to deal with this. I'm always here if you want to talk.
    Huge hug and besos

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