Today, I celebrate five years of blogging. I wrote my first post on February 18th, 2009 about something education related for an assignment in my Educational Psychology class. Last year, to celebrate four years of blogging, I did an amazing giveaway. But this year, I thought I'd follow in Erin's footsteps and write a letter to you: my readers.
Far left: 20, March 2009 // Middle: 23, November 2012 // Right: 25, November 2013
These two words I have to say to you almost seem too simple: THANK YOU! I feel like you deserve more than my simple thanks because you all have come and shared a piece of my life with me that I never knew existed or could even happen. See, I started this whole blogging adventure five years ago with the mindset of getting through this class with an A and moving on to the world of nursing. I had written a blog before - back in the days of MySpace blogs and LiveJournal and Xanga. But those were really only for my eyes to see. By the time May 2009 rolled around, I knew I wanted to continue blogging, both for myself and for the benefit of others.
Throughout the past five years, I have gone through "blogger's block" and forgotten about this space. I've gone months without writing anything: too consumed with school, my own life, and my own drama. But I always found my way back here. And, in the past year and a half, I have come here regularly: to document my life, tell everyone my thoughts, reveal some secrets, vent, and, hopefully, help others. I remember seeing that little GFC box reach 100 back in December 2012 and, even if that isn't an accurate portrayal of my actual number of readers, I was taken aback. How had I come to this point? A real milestone for any blogger, just ask.
That number has increased tremendously in just 14 months. My life has changed tremendously in just 14 months. This blog has seen me go from Sophomore Education Student to Brand New Nursing Student to Full-Fledged Nursing Student to Confident Nursing Student to Brand New College Grad to Panic-stricken NCLEX Study-er to Official Registered Nurse & Full-Time Job-Seeker. From 20 to 25. From Decorah, Iowa to Rochester, Minnesota.
I have "met" a multitude of strong-willed, independent, beautiful women through blogging. I have read posts written by ladies that have resonated so deeply within me that they brought me to tears. I have gotten to know myself better through getting to know you all. I have realized truly what it means to be passionate about life and what I do. And I would love to say that I have realized this passion through trial and error and writing it all down and being able to go back, reread, and learn.
Some people don't really understand blogging. They don't understand how I have the drive to keep coming back to something where I may feel like I have to contribute something each and everyday. The short answer is: I don't. I don't feel the need (anymore) to "try" and "be" a blogger each day. I come back everyday because I enjoy it. This is cathartic for me.
I am also fortunate to be able to have a platform for sharing my passion with others. My involvement in advocating to end sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse, changing the way society thinks, and the way women are treated sort of just fell into my lap over the past 6 months. I am thankful that, even if many of you don't know how to respond to these posts, you still take the time to read them.
I don't know where I'll be in a years time. I don't know what this blog will mean to me in five years time. But I know that, right now, I couldn't be happier with how this blog has changed my life. For the better. So, stick around; I can't promise you anything except that I'll be here and I'll keep writing.
*Cue the cheesy violin music*