You've probably read that "there wasn't a dry eye in the house," while the keynote speakers bared their souls at BlogHer. Well, yes there was. There was one. Actually two. Mine. My eyes were dry. Not a tear to be shed... Not even a slight welling. But to say I wasn't moved isn't entirely accurate. I was moved... eventually. But before you delete me out of your life with indignant outrage, let me try to explain.
The weekend at BlogHer took me utterly and completely off-guard. I had no expectations because, in the weeks prior, there was absolutely no time to think about it. I didn't blog. I didn't twitter. I didn't email. I was offline and living large. In retrospect, not such a great move. I felt fairly detached, and was operating in "observer" mode most of the first day. Blog names sounded vaguely familiar. Avatars, transformed into friendly faces, were a blur. Introductions didn't mean what I thought they would. I was confused.
Day two was a bit better, but I was still overwhelmed. It took everything I had to take it all in. There were lots of blog-unrelated laughs with the handful of women with whom I felt a connection. Easy conversation, easy silences. No need to get every word in, because there would be time later... when the weekend was over, and the actual fostering of relationships could begin.
I spent my days wandering in and out of various lectures and panels, learning about SEO, CPMs, and the apparent apocalyptic arrival of the FTC on my blog's doorstep (who knew?). I finally "came to" in a nondescript chair in the last, nondescript room in a dark, nondescript hallway in the unbearably nondescript basement of the whole damn hotel. I had landed in a sweet little nest of writers, all of whom wanted to talk about the craziest thing at a blogging convention... writing. The panelists began their not-very-thought-out, but very-well-intentioned schtick, which quickly evolved into a fun, smart, intimate and nurturing conversation between us all. It dawned on me that I was in the right place, and walking away with the knowledge that I am, metaphorically speaking, where I really should be, was exactly what I needed to learn.
The puzzle pieces all sort of assembled themselves for me on the plane ride home. The emotion, the connections, the glitz, the baby-wearing, the swag-handling, the reality of it all suddenly took over, and I finally shed those tears that I held so deep inside, unable to release in front of the lovely, crazy, smart, funny, wonderful people I encountered over the weekend.
And then I wanted a "do-over". I wanted to relive the weekend, better in touch with my own soul... But, I guess I'll just have to wait until next year.