Why Did The Blogger Cross The Road?

The streets of San Jose are expansive lanes of cars zipping this way and that, each rushing to their individual destination. Standing on the corner, a bit intimidated by this new city, I watched from the safety of the sidewalk as drivers travelled their path. I wondered what their journey entailed on a Friday morning in the middle of summer. Where were they coming from? Where were they going?

I was anxious to cross and make my way to my first ever BlogHer conference yet I was hesitant to step out of my comfort zone as the traffic light changed and the countdown began. I didn’t trust the 14 seconds given to navigate my way across the four lanes of traffic with a track in the middle for public transportation, but each time I found myself being carried in the throng of pedestrians performing a tribal dance of street crossing and floated with them until I was safely on the other side.

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BlogHer was much the same way for me. I entered a sea of bloggers whose energy vibrated the floors and bounced off the walls of the San Jose Convention Center. Wide eyed, heart pumping I stood in the lobby and took it all in, hesitant to take a step in any direction. Bloggers zipped around me and I found myself wondering about each of them as they travelled past me.

As a new countdown began, another wave of conference attendees entered behind me and I was once again caught up in their midst. I let their energy carry me toward the registration desk, stepped out of my comfort zone, and let the adventure begin. I searched for a familiar face in the crowd and found it in the form of an online group I belong to called The Bloppies, a group of bloggers I had interacted with online for months. These women and more experienced bloggers were just as excited to meet me in person as I was to meet them.

And, just like that I found myself breathing a little easier.

After a whirlwind weekend of highs and lows, laughter and tears, and my moment in the spotlight as a 2014 VOTY I found myself at the same intersection waiting to cross the street once more. Except, this time it was different.

I was no longer intimidated by the fast pace or hesitant of stepping out of my comfort zone and navigating my way across the street. I was leaving San Jose with confidence in myself, my writing, and ready to take on the blogging world. I was not going to take baby steps, but run full force into all the opportunities I had shied away from before and put myself out there. As the sign switched from “talk to the hand” to the walking man, I took action and began my journey across the street. About halfway there I realized I had less time than I thought to get across before the light changed and decided to jog the last few steps. My ankle twisted and I fractured my foot.

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It was then I realized why I had crossed that intersection the first time upon my arrival. It wasn’t for the words I would hear from speakers and panelists or the tips of the trade shared in group discussions. I crossed the street in search of my tribe, not knowing I had already met them online. As I leaned on the women around me that last night, I realized every cent I spent on BlogHer was worth being in their presence all weekend as they applauded me, encouraged me and supported me in so many ways.

My best BlogHer swag came in the form of a tribe that may not have fit in my luggage, but I will forever carry close to my heart.

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22 thoughts on “Why Did The Blogger Cross The Road?

  1. Leah, lovely lady, congratulations on Blogher’14 Voices of the Year award. What an honor!!! I’ve been out of the loop for so long that I had no idea Blogher was being hosted in CA this year. I found out by visiting Amy’s blog.

    I’ve been buried in feedings and diaper changes. I’m slowly getting back into the swing of things . . . But I had to pop in to say I MISS YOU!!!

    • Oh my goodness! My friend Anka! I think of you often and have searched for your blog numerous times. I knew you were taking a break after the latest little blessing, but expected you back sooner…wishful thinking on my part! 🙂 I almost emailed you a few times, but figured you were trying to disconnect completely and dedicate your time 100% to your family. So glad to see you back here. I’ve missed you! Attending BlogHer and being a VOTY was an awesome experience, but especially meeting fellow bloggers in person. Maybe next time we can meet each other there! Glad you’ve been well. Pop back in when you can! HUGS!

  2. I so so so loved meeting you! And I’m so sorry about your foot. I still can’t believe it was a fracture – poor you but BRAVE you for the VOTY and the tribe and the connections. I will forever be grateful for meeting you so much. Please let’s stay in touch because YOU were a highlight of my BlogHer deal.

    • Thank you Sandy. It was a very special weekend. I loved meeting the Bloppies and being around so many talented writers was inspiring. Thankfully, I didn’t fracture my foot until the last night! 😉

    • Thank you Julie. Even a fractured foot couldn’t dull my post BlogHer high! It was an amazing experience and you were definitely a highlight. I’m so glad I got to spend time with you too. Love ya!

  3. Best BlogHer (non) recap post! LOVELOVELOVE. I am so happy I got to meet you, Leah. It’s hard for me to even put into words when you’ve done it so perfectly. You’re in my heart as well.

  4. Bloppies rock! So happy to have met you – I enjoyed getting to know you and am honored to be in your tribe! I hope your foot heals soon (heels soon? LOL). xoxo

    • Bloppies definitely rock! No heels for me any time soon. He he it might be a good time to start meditating. Lucky for me I have an amazing friend in my tribe who can help with that.

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