Not only that: this is my five hundredth post.
I started blogging in July 2007, after finishing the New York run of my show Mother Load. The press agent said I should start a blog so if people went to the show’s website, there’d be something to keep them there. And so my sister taught me how to use Blogspot, and I hung out a shingle:
Pregnancy is so long that any time you feel like you’ve gotten somewhere, you just have to look at it from the “time remaining” vantage point to realize that you still have oceans of time before you. 13 weeks? That’s enough time to write a freaking novel or train for a marathon. And I have already been at this since JANUARY.
Nobody commented on that first post. Nobody commented for the first couple of months. I’m not sure anyone was reading. It took me a bit to realize I was supposed to be part of a community, reading and commenting on others’ blogs, linking back and forth, finding a community one reader at a time.
That pregnancy, almost certainly my last, is now far behind me (that occupant of my belly, who just interrupted this blog post to tell me my “favorite show” was on, will start pre-K in two weeks). Five years and five hundred posts later, I still wonder who’s reading, and I’m still shocked and delighted that anyone does. I post here once a week when it should be daily. I should have a vlog and a podcast. This blog could be bigger and better. I resolve to make it a priority. And then I don’t.
Still, when I look back, I can’t believe what this blog has given me: a writing career. Being part of Listen To Your Mother. Advice and encouragement from strangers, many times over. And friends– smart, funny, insightful women with tons to say and whose own online writing has made me laugh, and cry, and feel so much less alone. (See “blog roll” at the bottom.)
I’m not always so good at this blogging thing. Sometimes blogging is just another arena in which to feel bad about oneself, feel shamed at one’s lowly monthly pageviews and soaring bounce rate. Like motherhood, there is always a way to be blogging a little bit better, and always someone there to tell you how they’re scaling those heights of achievement. That can make me feel motivated; it can also make me feel discouraged.
But for today, I’ll choose to feel proud. 5 years, 500 posts, and if I’ve made a few people laugh, or nod, or just feel better, then I am extraordinarily lucky. As my blogging friend Kyran Pittman has pointed out, having a blog means your writing has an immediate audience, and whether we have millions of readers or dozens, how very lucky we are: we are saying something, and we are being heard.
Thanks for being on this journey with me.