(Originally from March 3, 2011)
I started blogging while we were in Germany for several reasons - I needed to do something to feel...connected to the outside world. The first year we were there, I really struggled with feeling isolated. I hadn't realized prior to that how rare it was to find true friends, good friends. I also hadn't realized how much it would bother me to feel like so many of those connections were being lost. I was that easily forgettable? Ouch! That stung, believe you me.
I also wanted a way to tell people what was going on without feeling like I was pestering them with phone calls or emails. Well, okay, maybe not phone calls. Between my dialing issues and the time difference, it was hard to connect by phone. Plus, until we decided to Vonage it up, we were at the mercy of international phone rates. The cost to us wasn't too bad, but calling Germany from the US? Pretty expensive.
So the blog started out mostly for friends and family. I hoped that my stellar storytelling and rock star kids would attract attention (from whom, I'm still not sure..._), they'd ask me to write a book or a regular column somewhere, and I could turn my nicey nice online family life stories into a paying job.
Ah, the power of the naive mind.
BUT- to those of you that have been with me from the start - which does not, by the way, include my mother (she read my blog until the Christmas letter snarkfest and I don't think she's been back since then) - I am tearfully grateful. Grateful that you read, that you come back, that I can make you laugh. That you care enough to take time out of your life to read about mine. It's humbling. Thank you.
But as time passed, I realized that if I was going to get my blog out there to the masses, I was going to have to self promote. UGH. Not really on my agenda. I halfheartedly stuck my blog on a couple of blog sites, but I enjoyed finding other blogs way more than trying to push mine.
So now I've got this nice list of blogs that I follow and read faithfully. These bloggers are talented. All of them. It's intimidating, but in a good way.
I realized though - I'm not the least bit sure about blogger ettiquitte. Is it silly of me to want my followers to actually read my blog and not just follow me because they want me to follow them? If they follow me am I then required to follow them, even if their blog isn't my cup'o'tea? I don't do advertising, I don't do giveaways and I have no plans to change that at this point. Is that blogger suicide?
But in reading some of the blogs out there, I have to get this off my chest and request your help. If ever my blog comes across like a whiney, complainey, I'm-never-happy-with-anything-and-no-one-can-do-anything-right-but-me blog, will someone PLEASE smack me right across my face - virtual or otherwise. I do NOT want to be that blogger. Do not, do not, do not. I've got no problem with venting or complaining, and lord knows I do it plenty. It's good to get things off your chest! But if that's all you've got? Unhappiness and misery and a general dissatisfaction with everyone and everything around you? I can't do that. It just sucks up all my energy. And I need to keep all of the energy I've got, frankly.
And finally - can some one tell me why everything turns into a form of high school cliquey-ness? Even 20 years out?