I haven’t posted in a while.
I’ve been busy. Ahem.
Okay – I’ll admit it. That whole Jerry Springer hullaballoo with the bitchy bloggers that went down last week really put me off blogging. For an entire week.
I just couldn’t stomach all the drama. I felt like I had degraded myself, and my blog – by attracting all that negative rubber-necky attention. It gave me a tummy ache, if you want to know the truth. It felt like I did back in college when I woke up next to someone I shouldn’t have. You know? Squeamish. Yucky.
I brought it all on myself with my post about critical tweens in which I quoted – and yes, judged – the BIBS. I didn’t know how much negativity it would create, though. I had no idea. And conversely, I had no idea how strong – how really very strong – my readership is. But I found out, through all of this. And I was really touched to see that the people who regularly read this blog – and even some of you lurkers, who I love because you are shy, but you read my blog quietly – came out in droves to support me in the comments, or send me emails, or text me, or to send me Twitter messages, of support. That was – well, it was huge. I had no idea, before all this.
Now I do. That was a big gift.
Anyway, I’m back now. The BIBS were big-hearted and took the first step by offering me a virtual olive branch. They even contacted my friend Alison who is my friend and also one of my favorite bloggers, because she had bravely jumped into the fray and defended me on their blog. She also wrote this poetic post, Are You Judging Me? in response to the whole furore. So BIBS asked Alison if she would broker some sort of peace deal. A virtual Camp David. (-:
Alison is such a diplomat, she even has a British accent. She kindly offered to assist in the tricky virtual peace negotiations. Henry Kissinger has nothing on Alison SW Lee! (-;
So BIBS ended up offering me an olive branch on their Facebook page, and in my blog comments.
Just as they did, I was simultaneously living my “real” life and brokering a peace deal between my children, who’d had yet another sibling spat. I was lecturing them in a rather superior, know-it-all manner: “You know,” I said, “part of the process of growing up means being big enough to say you’re sorry…and big enough to accept an apology, to let it go, and move on.”
At the very moment I said those words, I had a cartoon epiphany: I got it. Here I was teaching my kids that mature people know how to apologize and to accept apologies – so I went right to my computer. With great relief I accepted the BIBS apology, apologized for my own B-wordy behavior on this end, let it go, and moved on.
It’s all pretty high school. I had even unfollowed BIBS on Twitter, and they had unfollowed me. But after we kissed and made up I’m pleased to report that we’re both following each other again and are on good terms. We just got caught up in our inner B-words, I guess. I’m not really sure what happened up there in cyber-space, what kind of Genie’s box I opened, or why the whole ordeal was so popular (well, actually I think it was popular for the same reason traffic slows near a crash-site: so the rubberneckers can look at it; the people like me, who are attracted to tabloid things and gore – I know I’m one of the ones who slows down to look!). So anyway, I’m just glad to put the bitchy blogger Genie back in the bottle and close the lid up tightly.
Good riddance to it.
After the “ordeal,” it was timely for me to read Shmutzie’s post, 5 Truths About Blog Comments and Why Quality Is Still King. It made me think about whether I blog for comments, or for another reason. I must admit that during my BIBS ordeal, it was pretty nice to get the massive attention from that blog post, as evidenced in the 109+ comments – but Shmutzie’s post encouraged me to go deeper, to ask myself what am I in it for? That post may have gotten a whole lot of attention – but toddlers get a whole lot of attention for supermarket tantrums, don’t they? Does that mean it’s the kind of attention they really need?
For the first year or so of my blogging I was more invested in the number of comments a post would get than I am now. I also participated in more link-ups than I do now, mainly because link-ups tend to generate more comments, and more community. But – something has shifted, for me. I’m less inclined to use the total number of comments a post gets as a measurement of my “success.” Also, this year I just don’t have the time to read and comment on as many blogs as I did last year, and I’m not able to join as many link-ups, either. I’ve kind of evolved as a blogger, into more of my own personal groove. I’m no longer measuring myself by how many people comment on a post, or by how many unique viewers I get per month, or even how much I’m getting paid for advertising (which isn’t much, I can assure you!).
I’m measuring my success by whether or not I’m writing what I want to write about – and for me, for now, that’s enough.
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