I have to, once again, give an enormous, huge shout out to Steaz for picking me (even if it was random) to attend Blissdom on their big fat dollar. In case you didn't know, I won a full conference pass and you can check out my entry here.
We (husband and I) drove 10 hours from rural Missouri to Nashville, TN, and I was FREAKING OUT the entire way. I followed Twitter updates all day long and the anticipation only grew. By the time we got there I was so excited and nervous that I almost told Josh to turn around and drive me back home. Pretty much every time I went to ANYTHING at Blissdom, my first reaction was to turn around and run back to my room, into the waiting arms of my familiar husband. At least I knew HIM. Have I told you yet that I didn't know a SOUL walking into this ginormous BioDome? I am so socially awkward (and don't you dare comment and try to tell me I'm not--wait a second, no, go ahead and comment and tell me I'm not), or at least I FEEL like I am socially awkward, that it was easier for me to run and hide; maybe even bury my head in the sand, than face a few cocktail parties. But I didn't. And I am SO GLAD I didn't.
Because I broke out of my shell (and nearly vomited every time I did it) I met some amazing people. There are simply too many to list. Some of the more awkward meetings were between myself and some bloggers that I really admire. Take, for instance, THIS classy lady.
Lindsay, you are so pretty! Sorry. Just had to throw that in there.
*ahem.* Anyway, I saw her at the Potato Tastemaker 2k10 Party , looking absolutely fabulous. Someone I was standing with said, "Oh my gosh. Do you read Suburban Turmoil? Because THERE. SHE. IS." And with that, went up and talked to her. I got a little sweaty in the 'pits right there, I'm not going to lie. Because THERE. SHE. WAS. So I decided to march my little butt over there and make a fool out of myself. So I started the conversation with, "I'm about to really embarrass myself, but I'm okay with that. I'm Rachel Boldman, and Ireadyourblogalotandactuallycomment,whichformeishugebecauseidon'tcommentalotonpeople'sblogs *BIG DEEP BREATH*
*BIG DEEP BREATH*
And I think there was a hug in there. Lindsay, did you hug me because you couldn't understand what the heck I was saying? If so, it's okay. I totally understand.
This is just ONE of a few examples of how I embarrassed myself over the course of the weekend, but I had an amazing time. And I learned a lot.
I learned that blogging, and this whole blogging WORLD is all about connection-- connection with each other through our writing, and connection with ourselves. Connection with MYself. Connections made through the internet are REAL, folks. They are honest-to-God friendships that form over really small common ground between people, like style, or really BIG common ground like grief. I came away with a renewed excitement about my story. Sometimes I think because I don't have many readers I'm insignificant. But it's quite the opposite. I am fortunate--I have more opportunity to share. And I can't wait to share my story with you.
Over the next few days and weeks I hope to give you some more insight into what I learned at Blissdom. I may be in and out while I'm on vacation but rest assured, the thoughts are a-brewin'. I will also share my story, in pieces, as I am comfortable, but I will share it. I promise to open up my little world and let you in just a little bit more (maybe a little at a time) and hope you find something to make you feel not-so-alone.
And thank you to all the FRIENDS I met at Blissdom for making ME feel not-so-alone in a sea of 500 amazing women. You made me feel just as amazing as you are.