365 days in all. The better part of 350,000 words, give or take. I started counting, but a hundred days in I could feel myself starting to lose my already tenuous grip on sanity. A few M.I.T. graduate-worthy calculations had me netting out here.
At a shit load of words. How many pages is War and Peace?
May be off by a few, but it’s close enough, trust me. 22,359 of you have read my blog, NOT including today. 5,074 comments have been left (and conversations started), NOT including today. And I’m read in 114 countries, NOT including today.
Staggering. Mind-blowing. Unbelievable. Yet true.
Pinch me, someone, please.
In the beginning there was just a germ of an idea. An idea that quickly became a personal challenge. So I set a goal. And goddamn it, I did it! And I’ve loved each and every minute.
And what a year it’s been!
To my own amazement, more than anyone else’s I’m sure, I’ve shared a different part of me with you, every day, for the past 365. The funny me. The serious me. The pensive me. The melancholy me. The sad me. The curious me. The bitchy me. The sarcastic me. The challenging me. The sentimental me. The loving me. The nurturing me. The neurotic me. The romantic me. The pragmatic me. The ranting me. The mellow me. The critical me. The cranky me. The nasty me. The naughty me. The frustrated me. The irreverent me. The cynical me. The trusting me. The naive me. The all-knowing me. The opinionated me. The committed me. The determined me. The not-so-sure me. The questioning me.
The friend. The daughter. The boss. The employee. The neighbour. The traveler. The hermit. The recluse. The couch potato. The optimist. The dreamer. The fan. The fanatic. The control freak. The ad gal. The reader. The watcher. The leader. The follower. The movie lover. The cook. The shopper. The collector. The purist. The enthusiast. The introvert. The extrovert. The ex. The idiot. The non-conformist. The volunteer. The do-gooder. The mouth. The child. The grown-up. The woman. The feminist. The animal lover. The activist. The justice-seeker. The shit disturber. The writer.
Some of those parts have been a real surprise, especially to me. I’ve seen sides of myself I never knew existed. Sides I now want to explore in greater detail. I’ve been challenged and stretched; and have found myself under the gun, on more than one occasion, to come up with an idea, pronto! Which was the point. Or at least part of it.
This blog has introduced me to people I would never otherwise have met. Yes, you. We’ve visited each other’s blogs. We’ve exchanged thoughts and opinions. We’ve shared experiences and recipes. We’ve discovered our common interests. We’ve conversed and debated and differed. We’ve also formed bonds and established friendships, unconventional as they may be. Because for the most part, it’s highly unlikely we’ll ever meet in person.
Although having said that, I have met three of you. Julie from Texas, (Sow, Sew, So), and her husband, Bruce; and Patricia Sands, author of two books (and counting), a blog and a newsletter. She lives in Toronto (although her heart’s in France), but she’s constantly on the go! And I’m hoping to meet more of you. Wouldn’t that be just fab-u-lous??
What’s next for the blogging me?
Five days ago I said I had five days to figure it out. And I have. To a point. First things first:
I’m going to take a day or two off.
To clear my head, if nothing else. Hopefully you agree I’ve earned it. I’ll do it anyway, but it would be nice if I had your blessing.
Next, I am NOT committing to blogging every day. I’ve been there, done that. Proved my point. And I’d like some extra time to devote to my book. But I’ve learned a lot about blogging through this experience, some of my past efforts and the experiences of others. It is FAR too easy to let a blog languish. To lose momentum. To write less and less frequently, until you disappear completely.
Go from having a blog, to having HAD a blog.
Not me. Not this time.
So I know, all too well, making a commitment is absolutely essential. I proved that to myself with this blog. While I am not prepared to commit to blogging every single day again, I AM prepared to COMMIT to blogging AT LEAST once a week; and knowing me, it will probably be much MORE frequent. I have too much on my mind and I’m too anxious to share, to be satisfied with a once-weekly-only schedule.
But first, I’m going to take a day or two off. Starting tomorrow.
Before you know it, though, I’ll be right here, again. In this very same spot. Same time. Same station. Same channel. You don’t have to do a thing. Leave the dial exactly where it is. I’ll make a little adjustment to the name of the blog. Just slight. So it makes sense a year in and going forward. I’ll re-write a couple of the pages to make them more current. And I’ll do the same with the subhead. Just tweaks, really.
Then it will be business as usual. Blogging as usual. So I hope I continue to see you right here, for days and weeks and months and possibly even years to come. Because none of it would have been the same, without all of you. Thank you SO much for joining me on the little adventure that turned out to be a pretty significant journey of self-discovery. One that was, hopefully, as good for you as it has been for me.
In the immortal words of The Terminator, aka the former Governor of California, aka the housekeeper’s married lover, aka Maria Shriver’s former husband, aka Arnold Schwarzenegger, “I’ll be back!”
Let’s make a date for this coming Friday. Okay?