Green with BlogHer Envyby Deanna Verbouwens
I have blogger conference envy. I am completely jealous of all the bloggers that have attended conferences throughout 2011, and especially this last one, the "MOTHER" of all blogger conferences - BlogHer. I felt left out of the party, this was THE conference where ALL the bloggers were; you know the ones with tens of thousands of followers on Twitter, the ones that get the product reviews and give-aways the ones with 1,000,000 daily page views. Yeah, those bloggers, they were all at the party of the year, and I wasn’t. I was on my annual family vacation with 25 of my closest relatives.
During this vacation I checked Twitter and tweeted more than I probably should, actually I check Twitter more than I ever should on a regular basis, but this being a vacation, I should have unplugged more frequently. Every time I checked Twitter my stream was flooded with BlogHer tweets, and I literally turned green with envy, it actually infuriated me as I felt like I was missing out on an opportunity of a lifetime. I wanted to unfollow all those that used the #BlogHer hash tag. I wanted to network with all the bloggers I followed and admired, I wanted to see the new fabulous products of the year, I wanted to be inspired, motivated, moved to be the best blogger I could be, and don’t be fooled I also wanted the swag, the invites to the parties and especially the invite to a private showing of "The Help." I mean, I loved the book, I’m sure I’d love the movie too.
I started to feel like inadequate Deanna, the girl I put to bed so many years ago, the girl that got bent out of shape because she felt left out. I spent hundreds of hours in therapy and worked hard on my own to kick her in the ass and to shut up her up, so I was perplexed that these feelings came rushing back to the tender age of 22. It was the first week of my first job; I was a paralegal in Manhattan at one of the most prestigious and powerful law firms in New York. It was lunch time and I so badly wanted to eat with a group of girls from another department. The girls seemed so with it, intelligent, trendy; I just knew that they would all carve out super careers for themselves. I didn’t know how to approach them and they weren’t extending an invite to me either, so I ended up eating lunch by myself. All alone. And that’s how I felt about all the bloggers at this conference. In my mind if they were at BlogHer they were the BEST bloggers, they had to be, they were at BlogHer weren’t they? It didn’t’ matter if they were blogging for one year, or ten years, if they had one hit a day or 2,000,000 hits a day, if they were there they were the best. And since I wasn’t there, I clearly wasn’t “The Best.”
And then a slew of thoughts flooded my brain like a damn that just broke: Why wasn’t I invited to go to BlogHer as a brand ambassador? Why hasn’t my blog being noticed? I’m just as funny, endearing and as delightful as any of these other bloggers. I started to rake myself over the coals, started comparing myself to this blogger and that blogger. And then it hit me, actually two things hit me. My son’s beach ball came flying into my lap which made me stop thinking so ridiculously. I also got hit with a nice warm blanket of sanity that covered my body. I’m a 40 year old women, I love Deanna, and it was time to stop comparing myself to everybody and to focus on being Deanna, exactly what I’ve been doing for the last five years. Be the Deanna I love and am proud of.
This pity party needed to end. And anyway, it was my decision not attend any conferences this year, and this one, BlogHer, it’s the same weekend every year, which is the same week of my annual family vacation. I can never attend the BlogHer conference. Ever. Insert sad face.
Nevertheless, I do what I can, when I can. I am happy to have found my passion in life as a writer (who cares if I’m unemployed) because I love to write. I blog when I can, I blog about what I want to blog about and I am not only a blogger, I‘m also mom, a wife, and at some point I do really need to clean my house. But because I’m relatively a newbie blogger with September marking my third year I realized that it’s time to step it up a notch, to put myself out there more, and to dig deeper, my goal is to become a full-time blogger, but it’s hard to do with a full time job with that being said, over the last year I have definitely made strides, as I blog for this great site, and have a few guest posts on some major high-traffic blogs; I may even have a paying gig by 2012. But I know I need to do more, and the only way to do more is to give more, and frankly, that’s going to take time. So after I got smacked in the gut with a beach ball, and had my pity party I realized that I’m on vacation with my family, and being on vacation with 25 people is plenty of material for lots of blogs. I put the iPhone down and enjoyed my vacation, of course after I sent one more tweet, hey I’m human!