What I realized about myself at BlogHer141:40 PM
As Newbie to BlogHer, I have to admit, I was a bit terrified. I was so excited all the way there, right up until Thursday morning when I woke up to get dressed and the anxiety set in. Would I fit in with anyone? Would anyone like me? Granted even after my disaster of getting to San Jose, I thought I was ready for anything, but I wasn't, not really.
You see, a year ago, I never would have had these thoughts, I was outgoing, I talked so much people would have loved for me to shut up, I wouldn't miss a party and I loved being in huge crowds and around others, but that all changed the day I had Brain Surgery. I became someone else,someone I am still trying to get used to as I try to find my way back to the person I once was.
The first person I met was this amazing lady Tracy who was coming to BlogHer not only as a blogger but as a Company Rep looking for bloggers, I didn't know this when we struck up a conversation in the Airport, but we talked for hours then shared a cab to our respective hotels, I just knew she was going to be a friend for life, she was amazing. After that, that night, the only people I met were the rough tough guys in town for the UFC fights Granted I did get Autographs, I mean come on, they even offered me tickets but I planned to be at the blogHer Closing Party while that fight took place.
Okay so back to day1, I walked in to the registration booth ( I had offered to work a 3 hour shift because they did not have enough volunteers and the first person I came into contact with was a girl Named Jessica. Now, not being forgetful or anything, I would have to go back through my stack or cards collected to actually remember her blog or her last name, but I found her to be quiet nice and she even offered to let me walk with her to the BlogHer Baby Shower we had both been invited too , after that I saw her in passing a few times but we never really chatted it up anymore, but I did enjoy meeting her and getting to know a little about her. I think we found a small connection, but as I was not my usual self, I don't think she found me to be someone she wanted to hang with so to speak, so I moved on.
Next up, I attended the EPPA Sangria Party, and although I started walking there alone, I soon started talking with a couple of ladies whom I found interesting and we talked throughout the party and back to the hotel, yet, one again, I never saw them again and I never offered up any tidbit of myself or ask them to join me for coffee, etc.I proceed to the Convention Center & Expo Hall where I met an amazing lady whom I spoke with online named Cammie...not only did she take the time to talk with me, we had a picture together in the Skype booth and I opened up and told her my story after she congratulated me on my award I was receiving. Along the Two hours I was in the convention center, I did speak with a few people but basically just walked around lonely by myself, unsure of how to approach people. I made contacts with companies easily but had a hard time making contacts with others.
As the next two days passed, I did manage to make some friends, Jennifer from Makobie Scribe and her sidekick blogger Kelly ( who we found actually lives just minutes from me and I have a feeling I will have a lifelong friendship with) As well as a few other bloggers here and there, and another Jennifer who offered to be my buddy as I was a newbie, although I did not get to do much more than eat Breakfast with her, I felt like I knew her already and she was so down to earth. I did sit with several amazing ladies at the Voices of the year awards, who all seemed to know just the right things to say to each other, and I loved listening, but I never felt part of the group.
I can say with certainty, that if given the opportunity, I will never miss another BlogHer, because it was amazing from start to finish, given the fact that maybe I just made a few new friends was well worth it, as well as meeting the keynote speakers, Kerry Washington and Arrington Huffington as well as Chloie Kardashian.
I may never be the person I was before who would just randomly start a conversation and always have a friend by my side, but after BlogHer, I am resigned to that fact that I can be me, who I am now and be happy. I may not fit the model of a friend that many wanted to hang around with, and it was exciting meeting all the people I have admired as bloggers from afar, and all the inspiration I came away with from this amazing Conference with so many amazing women.
Though I went away with meeting so many amazing ladies, I never minded being on my own for the most part, as I got to do all the things I planned to do and more. Next year, maybe the me I used to be will surface and I will feel more comfortable, and as the next 365 pass, I will work on that so that when I walk in to BlogHer next year, I will do so with confidence, admiration and a sense of belonging.