I like who I am. I am my mother's daughter and I see flashes of her every time I look at my photographs. Yes I have inherited a wobble of the upper arm but I'm also blessed with strong, poker straight, natural coloured hair; trouble free skin and good teeth. I've learned that good posture, the art of bothering and wearing the right colours transform me. Some would say these are tricks of the eye - I would agree.
I genuinely think the world was a softer place where there was less threat of a child catching a glimpse of breaking news that would scar their growing brain cells. Of course Maggie Thatcher must have made a damning speech in parliament and the Berlin Wall came down within my news era, but I was never subjected to it with the same brutality that a child could be today.
Yes I have learnt a wealth of things about website creation, website hosting, domains, SEO, readability, passive voice (the bane of my life!), blog promotion, social media, scheduling and the thing every blogger stresses about, the almighty DA. These are things I didn't even know about before I became a blogger.
We have been so blessed with both of our boys being super sleepers, although I did have my fair share of sleepless nights with my eldest boy Maximus, especially around teething time and when he was feeling poorly. Admittedly, Max was sleeping through from about 12 weeks but he still had a bottle and his nappy changed during the night.
Watching my Snapchat feed, the green monster inside me began to make an appearance as I saw, what seemed like, EVERYONE at a much coveted event. I tapped through short clips of customised cupcakes, gorgeous selfies and perfect poses. Damn it, why wasn't I invited? Everyone looks like they are having SO much fun. All those smiles prove it right?
Earlier tonight, I had a look at the shortlist for the Mind Awards. Out of the 5 nominees in the blogging category, no male bloggers were nominated. Now, I'm not sure if it's a reflection on the talent of male writers or, more likely, the notion that men still feel such a weight of shame and adversity if they speak out about mental health.
As someone who runs a self-hosted site, I'm pretty excited about this. Not only will Facebook's transition to platforming give would-be bloggers a quick and easy way to set up their first blog, but it'll also provide bloggers who switch their sites to Facebook an opportunity to reach more people than ever before.
The one vivid memory I have of that interview was John looking me right in the eye and telling me that the best thing you can do is learn from others, whether it be friend or opposition. It was something that had helped him to succeed and something I've tried to implement in many aspects of my life since.
If you want to try blogging, set up a blog. If you want to journal, journal. If you want to submit something to a magazine without much writing experience, do it! If you want to spend the next few years writing a book, do that. You don't need to be published to be a writer and you don't need to have been published in order to get published.