The evolution of blogging and social media really amazes me.
I've gone from writing diarrhea - yes TMI - to 140 character tweets in a matter of years.
I recently read just 8-percent of Americans were using Facebook three years ago. But now over half of Americans 12-years-old and older are on the social media site.
12. Tweens. Really?
First, I'm pretty sure that that's illegal. (Don't you have to be 13 to sign up?)
Second, now I see why Amara begs to have a Facebook account now that she has her own laptop. (Yes, my soon-to-be eight-year-old has a computer. Dad2Amara and I had mixed feelings on this one but obviously you see who won on this battle.)
Many moons ago, I decided to begin blogging here at Mom2Amara. And let me tell you about the looks I got when I would tell people about my online adventures. Some people said I was exploiting my child by putting her every move on the scary Internet. Others believed that I was opening myself up to predators and abductors.
Oh, and then I actually became friends with other bloggers. Oye! The stares. Horror! Disbelief! What if they were mass murderers out to rob and destroy my family?
I attended my first BlogHer conference. I thrived. I learned what it meant to pour myself into my writing. I realized I had such potential to grow as a writer. Mother. Person.
How misunderstood blogging was.
And now I realize how misunderstood social media is.
Social media is about your voice. It's about relationships. I was intrigued by the mystique. But I remained in the blogosphere because the virtual world brought with it a sense of self.
I wasn't disconnected by being on my computer, typing away one character at a time. Disconnected were those hoards of people who just didn't understand. I hate that it's taken years for others to appreciate the value of Facebook. And it irks me that it will likely take another decade before *they* accept Twitter.
I value the relationships I have built through social media and my blog. I have learned valuable life lessons as well: how to benefit from writing (it has become a therapeutic tool, especially during my Mom's illness and death), how to be flexible with my time (I certainly do not write as frequently as I used to), how powerful of a tool my writing can be, for better or for worse.
I want to take advantage of all that social media will allow. If love matches can be made online, certainly I can connect with fellow Northeast Ohioans, Disneyphiles, Gleeks, and the like online, right?
I want my passion for life to radiate to all who will look. Even if that means it's just those lousy bloggers that are reading this post. Who's with me?