Sometimes the universe reminds you to get on out.
Tuesday, I met the bloggers above. Wednesday, I attended a conference for independent web publishers, given by one of the ad companies I use in my sidebar. Both events proved the glory of the new.
Sandra Salin, of Apart from My Art, organized the San Francisco lunch. Several midlife bloggers attended, none of whom I knew well. All are notable. Jennifer of A Well Styled Life writes for the Huffington Post. Elizabeth at The Vintage Contessa was featured in Advanced Style’s Instagram feed. Beth of Style At A Certain Age started blogging in March but has 13,000 Instagram followers.
No, I didn’t add a zero by mistake. Oh, and Sandra herself was a BlogHer 2013 Voice of the Year.
The thing is, 6 years on, I explore less of the blogosphere than I used to. And I further confess, these days I pretty much follow for similar taste. So when Elizabeth led Sandra, Jennifer and me to a store full of big jewelry, I watched them shop outside my style, and felt as though I were having an adventure as big as these necklaces.
When you take the time to simply sit, suspending judgment, enjoying what’s in front of you, it can be just as much fun as a peak experience you already knew you’d enjoy.
I won’t start wearing statement necklaces, but that wasn’t the point.
Next day, the universe seemed intent on making sure I’d understood. When I walked into the Fairmont Hotel for Sovrn’s i2 conference, memories of all the trade shows I’ve worked over the year came flooding back. Worked being the operative term. The anxiety and thrill of networking, pitching product repeatedly but newly for each listener. My poor dear feet.
This time I said to myself, “Lisa, it doesn’t matter one whit what you do here. Talk to people, don’t talk to people. Feel free to look weird standing by yourself. Act however you please.” I only hope I didn’t say it out loud, one never knows these days.
And I proceeded to meet, in order:
- The guy responsible for data science at About.com and this wonderful website of fantasy maps. Have I ever told you how much I love maps?
- The woman who writes Cooking with Amy. I’d just been wondering what to do with Hatch chiles.
- Jenna Cole, who I wrote about back when she was Miss Avocado on WeddingBee.
- And Gina Pell, creator of Splendora which I read excitedly back in the day. Gina’s getting back in the game, I think we’ll be glad.
I’m not saying life has to be a series of skydives. I think these events were more fun precisely because they were new, exactly because I do live a quiet life these days. The trick is to manage two things at once — to believe in what we’ve worked so hard to know but still challenge those tricky assumptions.