Birthday. noun. According to Dictionary.com, “a day marking or commemorating the origin, founding, or beginning of something.”
One year ago, I sat in my dorm room and hit the “publish” button for the first time. Happy birthday, dear blog, happy birthday to you.
I feel like this is supposed to be a big deal and that I should make up celebration-y things in its honor: My readership has exploded! My writing and character have grown so much! But I don’t know if those things are actually true. I started with a readership of, well, zero, so having any readers is noteworthy. If I evaluate my own performance, my thoughts are, “Oh look! Another sentence started with a conjunction! Another anecdote about perfection! More proof that I have gone nowhere in a year!”
So we’re not going to go there.
Here’s what I’m probably not supposed to write on the birthday of my baby blog: When I started this, I didn’t have any idea what I was doing. I didn’t talk about my writing and balked at sharing it. I didn’t think that my minimal writing experience and kind-of English major made me qualified.
All of these things are still true.
But when I let myself see, there are other, more important things that are true as well.
Other people have read and felt, so they say. Letting them into my head is terrifying, but it’s better than thoughts swelling too-large, unexposed. Molding ideas with words pushes deeper thinking, which leads to deeper living (sometimes). The writing is intentional here, the words rubbing harder against art than in scrawled journal pages. On quiet library mornings and late nights full of drowning thoughts, typing words keeps me sane. Perhaps blogging sucks away time, steals sleeping hours, and makes me more concerned with site stats than I should be. But it has been worth it.
These things are small, simple, un-revolutionary. But even when I don’t know what I’m doing and think someone else could do it better, they are enough to keep me going.
That is something worth celebrating.
So happy birthday, Girl, Defined. Here’s to another year.