Have you ever stood in a crowd of people and felt as if you were invisible?
A million people could pass by you and it didn’t matter whether they made eye contact because for whatever reason you felt like none of them really saw you.
It has happened to me more than once and though it used to be disconcerting it rarely bothers me anymore because I now if I want to be noticed I can make it happen.
But the thing is, there are very few people whose attention I really want or notice when it is…taken away.
When I am conscious of those people, I sometimes find myself looking for them in crowds where I never really expect to find them but I think I am so used to being connected that when it is not there, I just look for it.
Don’t know if it makes sense to anyone else, but that is me and I am good with it.
Blog Readers Come & Go
After eleven years of blogging and a million different evolutions, changes and revolutions in social media I have grown accustomed to seeing blog readers come and go.
Some of them burst onto the scene like a comet streaking across the sky and for a long while you see them in your stats and or engage with them in your comments or email.
In theÂ old daysÂ when the commenting section was active on a daily basis and the community more vocal it was easier to be cognizant of the entrance and or departure of the people.
Sometimes when they stopped coming around I’d reach out and ask them why they stopped but most of the time I just let them go about their business.
I figured they had gotten whatever it was they were going to get from hanging out here and that it was just their time to move on.
If this was my primary source of income I might have been more active at trying to find out why they left. I might have asked them to tell me if they were bored, burnt out of just done with blogging in general but I almost never did.
Almost never did meaning that once or twice I might have asked someone what happened but those were the exceptions to the rule.
Now I sometimes wonder if more people left because of the whole reciprocity in blogging thing. Maybe they took off because I didn’t comment on their blogs and that made them unhappy.
I read a comment on Facebook about Billy Joel. It went something like, “he hasn’t been good since the eighties.”
I have always liked his music and was/am definitely a fan but I had to do someÂ researchÂ to figure out if I agreed with the comment or not.
But I didn’t get very far.
I got caught up in his greatest hits album and started thinking about my writing. Started wondering if my best work was behind me.
This isn’t a physical sport. I shouldn’t feel the way I sometimes do after two hours of basketball, tired and wondering how my skill could have diminished as much as it has.
What I want to do and should be able to do is pull out the experience and use it to my advantage and know that I have become a better writer/communicator.
A kid can’t write about heartbreak, hope or love the way someone who has lived a little can. What makes that quote above so very powerful is having had an experience that allows you to relate to it.
I used to hate being told “You can’t screw an old head on young shoulders” but now I use it as part of my parenting repertoire.
In part because I have lived enough to appreciate the depth of the comment and have had moments with my own children where I had to remind myself they ignored good advice because they are young.
They may yet grow older and still ignore good advice but they can be confident their father will do as his have done and remind them of multiple moments.
I didn’t go to Kincaid’s last month, but I wanted to.
Had so little time and was certain that somehow I would be back in Texas living my life sooner than later. Though it hasn’t worked out as I thought it would it hasn’t not worked out either and the men who talked about old heads on young shoulders would counsel patience.
They would remind me you play the hands you are dealt and that games aren’t always won or lost on the first go around.
I’d tell them that I wanted to sit at the table, burger in hand and look out the window and just live. I’d tell them about how some of those moments led to great blog posts and that my gut is screaming at me to get back because the next chapter is waiting for me.
But the point isn’t to go back to try and relive the past but because the only way to step into the future is to open the door and cross the threshold.
Sometimes that happens by going somewhere new and sometimes it happens because when you go back you do so as someone new.
I am not trying to be who I was I am trying to be who I am and work into living as who I wish to become.
And if fortune smiles upon me I’ll capture lightning in a bottle and people will read the posts I have written with a smile and think I was good then but I am so much better now.
That is the dream and that is the goal.