I’m generally not a huge rah-rah- person, which is kind of funny since I was captain of the cheerleading squad in high school (who’da thunk it, right?). I want details and action, not happy sparkly rainbows. It’s just the way my personality tends to be, but at BlogHer this year, I found a different message – and it has resonated with me there and after.
Speaker after speaker didn’t talk about how to do more with less. Instead, they talked about how the importance of sleep. The need to slow down and enjoy. The fact that we’re enough. The band The Mrs performed on Saturday with a new single titled – appropriately – “I’m Enough” about how we are often made to feel like we aren’t living up to what we’re supposed to be but instead that we’re enough.
I found it interesting that this message was everywhere. BlogHer this year was smaller than it had been in the past few years – by an order of magnitude. There were fewer bloggers in attendance, fewer sessions, fewer parties, and fewer brands at a smaller expo.
I came to BlogHer with a carry-on containing everything I thought I needed for the weekend I was away. I didn’t bring six pairs of shoes, three outfits for each day, my DSLR and purses to hold everything or nothing. It was freeing, and I was happier not worrying about a huge suitcase. With the smaller expo and brands who gave out fewer tchotckes, I had just my carry-on for the return trip. Not lugging back a huge suitcase full of stuff was enough. I didn’t need more.
The same goes for the parties. Yes, there were fewer of them, and though the suite parties were crowded and sometimes hot, making me wish for the days when they were held in small ballrooms, it worked. On Saturday, there was the closing party sponsored by McDonalds that featured Rev Run who was so transparently happy to be there, with no party afterwards going until 1am. It felt a little strange to be “finished” just after 10pm, but it was enough.
The extra time not trying to scurry from party to party or make it through the expo hall or rush from one session to another meant that I was able to enjoy where I was far more. When the McDonalds party ended, a few friends rallied together in support of one who wanted to get a tattoo to commemorate her time at BlogHer. When as a group we discovered that there were no tattoo parlors open on a Saturday night (yep, the latest one closed at 8pm that night), we found a different way to help support Samantha in her quest for the perfect tattoo that we all had a hand in – literally. I can’t wait to see how it turns out, but that was such a special and meaningful time. And I would rather have been there than at any other party.
Because it’s all enough. I’ve been wanting to write this post for the last week, but I’ve been either swamped or running with kids or suffering from (another) headache. I started to feel guilty about putting up part of my recap so late, but then I remembered that it’s ok because… we’re enough. All of us.
Yes, I want to stretch and strive and achieve, but I want to do it at my own pace and in a way that makes me happy and keeps me sane. I’m taking the opportunity to say no where I choose and to catch up on some sleep instead of speeding elsewhere. So go figure, I was all about the rah rah this year.
The sessions at BlogHer, to be frank, aren’t for me for the most part anymore. This was my fifth BlogHer, and if I haven’t figured out some of these things yet, I’m never going to. I don’t walk away from them with an “a-ha” the way I used to, which is why I debated not coming at all this year. Instead, I expected to enjoy seeing friends and have fun being goofy with them at times. I didn’t expect to walk away with a benediction from so many in so many different ways that we should essentially stop and smell the roses, but I’m glad I listened and didn’t skip the keynotes.
Because I’m enough. Because we’re enough.