Happy Birthday to Blog. Happy Birthday to Blog. Happy Birthday dear, The Captain’s Speech. Happy Birthday to Blog! How old are you now? How old are you now? How old are you now? How old are you now? Are you one? Are you two? Is it a mid-life crisis you’re going through? Are you seven?
I’ll stop there before this gets weird and I start singing, “What’s your girlfriend’s first name?” to my blog. No need to embarrass it.
This blog turns seven-years-old today. They really do grow up so fast. Give me a minute to sniffle and fake cry.
Seven years ago, I didn’t know what I was doing in life. Now, I still don’t. But around 2:33AM on June 23, 2013, starting this blog felt like something I needed to do. Almost as if a divine force was leading me in this direction.
Since then, this blog has meant everything to me.
I was naive when I first started. I just assumed that I would post something, a bunch of random people would yell at me about it, and then I’d do it again, and so would they.
That is what I thought the internet was. A place where happy people were brought down by miserable people until everyone was miserable.
One of the first comments I got on my blog actually scared me. It was a nice comment. The person talked about things I mentioned in my post. I was terrified. Who are you and how dare you address me in such a tone? How did you find me?
You know the scene in Home Alone where Kevin hides under the bed? That is how I felt by that nice comment.
I never replied to it. I found it to be too suspicious. I didn’t even know if bloggers were supposed to reply to comments. There was no learner’s manual. I was new here.
No one told me there was a whole blogging community. Good thing, too. I would’ve probably thought it was the equivalent to a neighbourhood watch group, where we have monthly meetings and discuss disturbances in our comments section.
Heck, some of us do.
The first time I was nominated for a blog award, it took me a few minutes to realize I didn’t actually win anything. And then I stressed out over how I was supposed to nominate ten bloggers for the award, when I only followed seven.
Would I be flagged for failure to follow the rules of a fictitious award?
This was all new to me. Nowadays, I see so many new bloggers introduce themselves and say they’ve always thought about starting a blog and “finally got around to it.”
That was not me. I never thought about doing this, until (maybe) a week before I did it.
I have often wondered if the idea to start a blog was buried in my subconscious when I was younger. A few instances stand out to me as possible “seeds”, but how am I supposed to know for sure?
Eventually, I figured out what the blogging world was all about – it is an escape from the rest of the internet. What a delightful surprise!
No one was tearing each other down. No one was yelling. No one was being stubborn, obnoxious, or stupid. SOS, for short.
People were kind. They were supportive. They were attentive. They were caring.
Once I got past the whole, “Strangers on the internet are scary when they compliment my writing” thing, I started making blog friends.
I have come to realize that only bloggers can fully understand other bloggers. There is a common link between all of us, and I can see it in a lot of the posts on my Reader. It’s hard for me to put it into words, but it’s there.
It’s the “Blogger Gene” for lack of a more scientific/pre-existing term.
That gene is always visible when we share posts that tell a personal story of struggle, or fear of the unknown, but then we talk ourselves into finding the positive and end with a moral. I know you know what I’m talking about.
Those posts are really a letter to ourselves. They are the proof in the pudding – the raison d’être – for why we blog.
People who don’t blog may not understand why we share the things we do. They may think it’s a waste of time. They may see it as a chore to write for no reason.
There is a reason, though. Always.
One of the reasons I write is because there might be someone out there who needs to see my words. And I don’t mean that in a pompous way, at all.
I’ve received numerous comments over the years from people who have told me that something I wrote is exactly what they needed to read that day. Or that my blog acted as a nice distraction for them. Or it made them laugh when they needed a laugh.
I love being able to do that for people. I think a lot of bloggers do.
This is what is lost on other social media platforms, amidst all the yelling.
Here, it’s different. It’s a cult-like utopia, but not. It is humanity at its most patient and understanding.
We listen to each other. We take the time to learn about people from different countries, instead of falling back on the stereotype we’re supposed to have of them.
I am proud to say I have blog friends in countries all over the world. Getting to know people, who I would have never met otherwise, has been so rewarding.
Over the last seven years, the people I talk to on a daily basis has shifted. I find myself messaging other bloggers as often (usually more) as people I know in real life.
I should find this weird. I don’t.
Maybe there’s a greater discussion to be had here about how friendships are significantly aided by social media and that being with people, in person, isn’t the only way to develop a true friendship.
Who knew that liking and commenting on someone’s blog could lead to so much good? It’s almost as if being kind and supportive of people is the key to happy relationships between all of us.
What a concept.
There are some bloggers I can talk to as if I’ve known them forever, and yet we’re from different countries. I’ve learned that borders don’t matter; being a good human being is what counts. A sense of humour also helps.
I think we’ve all had that moment when we enter a new school and we’re trying find our group. You know, those people we get along with and can be ourselves around.
Blogging is very much the same way, except all we have are words and a profile picture. Somehow, that’s more than enough.
I started this blog after I graduated from university. I was missing my friends and it felt like there was a void in my life because no one really tells us where we’re supposed to make friends in the real world. Little did I know, it would be the internet.
We call each other blog friends, but there’s really no need for the word “blog”. We are friends. Family, to some extent.
Wait, I have an analogy.
We are like kids away at an overnight camp, coming from everywhere, but united in the same cabin. We play up the fact that we’re tired and want to sleep, but deep down we just want to talk and laugh a little bit longer because we’re having so much fun.
I am so thankful for stumbling my way through the doggy door into this really big cabin known as the blogging community. Thank you for helping me get my hind legs in, safely.
May we all talk and laugh a little bit longer.