I have been writing on my blog for four years now since semi-retiring from teaching in order to be a stay at home dad. It's been fun writing about all the funny things my kids say and the crazy stuff they come up with. At the very least, I will have a record of our crazy adventures with them as they grow up and be able to look back and laugh about all the things they used to say and do.
Last night, Al Watts, President of the National Stay At Home Dad Network offered me a ticket to The Dad 2.0 Summit. After attending the At Home Dad Convention this past October I was interested in the Summit but knew due to recent budget cuts that if I wanted to attend next year's convention that it was not to be.
I casually mentioned to my wife that this were the case in which she replied "Well, when you become a "real" dad blogger then we can have that conversation." Ouch. I asked what that was supposed to mean and she told me "Real dad bloggers post everyday". Double ouch. I mean, I am taking care of the kids all day so...yeah, I suppose this blogging thing isn't my full time job but it is definitely something that I take pride in because it is wholly MINE.
So, I asked The Dad Bloggers from Facebook on what constitutes a "real" dad blogger. I have to say, having this group was very helpful because they reaffirmed what my blog has meant to me. All write about topics that today's fathers face. Some use it as a way to brand themselves and others use it purely as an outlet for writing down their trials and tribulations, triumphs and failures, and all that funny poop along the way. Some do both and still others see it more as a hobby. The biggest question in the end is, are you making a contribution that is worthwhile and interesting?
What I found is that your blog is whatever the hell you want it to be. When I taught high school art for 10 years I loved having that creative freedom. If I could think of it, I did it. There was no better feeling as a teacher of art to come up with an idea purely from my imagination and figure out a way to teach it; to be able to pass it on to my students and watch them create.
In reality, all along, my blog has been that, a means to express myself. My blog exists so that I might pass my experiences with a certain situations on to other parents. It is meant to entertain and hopefully to educate. Along the way I hope to get laughs, reactions, and maybe help someone out there that is wondering if they are the only ones who has had pee from their newborn baby boy shoot directly into their mouth when changing a diaper. A word from the wise, if you are changing a diaper, keep your mouth closed. From the feedback I have gotten from the people who do follow me, I have been successful because they enjoy what I write and that is all that matters.
In the end, it is not a numbers game for me. Would it be nice to have more than 23 followers? Of course. I want as many people as I can to read my blog. If we look at Babble's Top Fifty Dad Bloggers of 2012 there are lots of guys on there that don't post everyday. Posting everyday doesn't define you as a real dad blogger. I don't know how they could. Lots of the dad bloggers said that a a worthwhile blog isn't about quantity but that it was much more about quality.
So brace yourself for my revelation. My wife was wrong. In the end, all of these dads pour their hearts into their work. Sure, some of them are crazy bastards but being a dad means this is part of the territory and for dads, making the world aware that we are actively participating in our kid's lives must be known and we all have lots to say. I may not be anywhere near the Top 50 Dad Bloggers of 2012, but it is something to shoot for and I am not going anywhere. I am a dad blogger because I am good enough, smart enough, and doggone it, people like me.