It’s easy to romanticize blogging.
It’s words and pictures and beauty and Instagram likes. It’s getting free stuff and making connections and hanging out with the coolest people in the coolest spots in the coolest city.
In some aspects and to some degree, it is that: sharing stories and engaging audiences and receiving perks and making friends.
But it’s so much more than that.
It’s carving hours out of my day to create, draft and schedule social media posts. It’s making a long-running (or at times short-running) list of blog ideas on my phone when they pop into my head. It’s obsessing over analytics, including likes, visits, views, engagements, shares, re-tweets.
It’s reaching out to local shops and to fellow bloggers and facing rejection or not hearing back from them at all. It’s putting my hurts and hopes and hang-ups on a screen for the world to see, and praying at least one person will receive my words well.
Blogging can be a place of insecurity for me.
Why don’t I get that many shares? Why did this post do better than my other? Why do her photos get more likes? What am I doing that’s not enough? Am I enough?
This weekend, I gathered with a group of other bloggers at Magnolia Sous Le Pont, a coffee shop in the Harwood District. Rhonda, the mastermind behind Dallas Blogger Brunch, led us in a delightful conversation of how to’s and learned mistakes and growing dreams.
It was exquisite and fun and challenging. It was an afternoon of letting time slip away and humbling ourselves into a place of vulnerability as we admitted, “I have no clue what I’m doing or how I’m going to make it as a blogger…but at least I have you ladies.”
As we sat there, huddled around three marble tables, mugs nestled in our hands, I found peace. I found rest. I found the heart of why I do what I do.
I do it for the people.
I don’t blog for the likes or the re-tweets or the site visitors. I don’t blog for the subscribers or the Facebook followers.
I blog because I am a born storyteller, always looking for someone or something significant, memorable or even wonderfully mundane. I blog because stories can turn strangers into friends, friends into family, family into a community.
I blog because I get an opportunity to meet amazing women who have amazing passions who aren’t afraid to dream and do, and to fail in the process.
It’s easy for me to lose vision, to lose faith in myself and my gifts and my creativity. It’s easy for me to covet what others have: their followers or talent or sponsors.
But then I remember why I do this: for the people. I remember why I love it: for the people. I remember why I’ll never leave it: for the people.