If you took our poll about why you visit the Zebra Pit, thank you. I wanted to see how closely aligned our stats/views are with what our dedicated followers come here for. There weren’t a lot of surprises, but there was one or two things that it helped me to understand more clearly about our readership.
While the poll only captured a small sample size, my hope is that the majority of those who answered are dedicated readers who are invested in what gets written about on the Zebra Pit. Knowing a bit about who those readers are will help me focus on the right things. That’s why I asked for information about primary diagnoses and major secondary comorbid conditions, as well as what topics you find the most value in that we currently write about. This will help me to know what conditions I need to focus on more rather than using my own healthcare needs and interests alone to guide me.
Our recent poll revealed some very interesting trends. For example, it turns out what most of you come here to learn more about also happens to be what I love to write about the most. Lucky me! This is largely in line with what I was already planning on concentrating on now that I don’t have as much time to devote to the development of new Zebra Pit content. Like I said, there were a few things I was unsure about, so I wanted to make sure that my own interests were in line with my readers. Stats don’t always tell the full story and what is popular isn’t necessarily representative of what my loyal readers value most.
The things that ranked highest on the poll are right in line with the things I hoped to spend the bulk of my time on; condition-specific articles, treatments and remedies, and safe exercise; spoonie health and wellness will remain our focus. Given the information revealed about the conditions our readers have, I’m going to attempt to focus some of this writing more on all the spoonie conditions that are well represented by this poll instead of letting whatever condition is driving me the craziest lead the way.
The one area I was planning on discontinuing until I saw how highly it ranked on the poll are my mental health and PTSD posts. This subject ranked as high as safe exercise on the poll. My thought was initially to move away from mental health, but perhaps I need to revisit this. I know there are a lot of spoonies trying to deal with the psychological effects of our illnesses and circumstances and while I feel I am far from the authority on this topic, I may be one of only a few braving the subject. It’s certainly not easy to find professionals who are actually qualified to help us in our unique positions. I’m not having any luck finding the right space for myself to get adequate counseling or even the right testing. More on that later.
Saying Goodbye to Old Friends
One thing I noticed with some relief, is that not too many people are interested in the topics of beauty and fashion. Many seem perfectly happy to do without FasciaBlasting and the recipes section, too. The beauty thing is something I tried briefly, but with MCAS, it’s definitely not the right genre for me. I can’t play with my health like that. I may from time to time share products that work for me, but I won’t be trying anything just so I can write about it. For now, I’ve eschewed all makeup and haircare because it was just too hard to find products that work.
FasciaBlasting will always be an essential part of my healthcare, but I probably share about a post a year on it, so we’re good there. When it comes to recipes, I’m well aware my boring-ass, highly restrictive combo diet of low FODMAP/low histamine is highly specific and weird and doesn’t lend to creating great recipes. I really feel like defending myself by talking about the diabolical cuisine I used to create, but there’s really no point. I know it all sucks and everyone who eats like me agrees. I will probably continue to post those that I come up with that I really like, though. Not that many people have to eat like me, but the few who do appreciate my concoctions and since low FODMAP and low histamine diets are so hard to make work, we can use all the help we can get. However, I won’t be writing much dietary advice anymore. If people aren’t interested in hearing it, I’m not about wasting my time and both the survey and my stats say it’s just not going over.
I’m a little sad to be saying goodbye to one section I’ve very much enjoyed writing; the my hero interview series. My intention with it was to highlight people with disabilities who are contributing to improving the lives of other people with disabilities. Advocacy is a big part of my life, I believe in its power to change, heal and influence people and I wanted to promote and celebrate it. The way it’s coming across to some people is that I’m pushing inspiration porn that creates unreasonable expectations around what disabled people should be able to accomplish. If telling people about good deeds and great products and services (some of which were free) you can get from people like yourself and support them in the process is participating in inspiration porn, then I guess I feel like the message has gotten confused. But I don’t want to be that person, or be perceived as being that person based on snap judgements, so January’s post will be the last one. Congratulations, PC police. You’ve won.
My goal is to try to broaden things a bit despite spending less time on content. I plan to write some more condition-specific articles on things I haven’t covered yet and to update some of the ones I have, such as on EDS which I haven’t touched since the new definitions came out. It’s a fault of mine, hating to cover the same thing every other health blogger covers, and therefore sometimes letting the bigger stuff go by. I’m just not the type of person who thinks “it hasn’t been done until it’s been done on my site.” Maybe I actually need a bigger ego in that respect.
Really at this point, it’s mostly going to be about filling in missing information and updating old posts with new discoveries and information. For the most part, the Zebra Pit is becoming less a blog and more a spoonie wiki, I suppose.
If you didn’t get a chance to weigh in, or there’s a topic you’d like to see us delve into that wasn’t on the poll, feel free to leave a comment with your suggestion. I don’t take them all, but I’m always willing to consider anything. I’m also always happy to have others bring their knowledge to the Zebra Pit through a guest post! Contact us if you’re interested.