Anyway, as you can tell from the title, this is going to be one of those posts. About BlogHer. And while it may seem that I should get all sheepish towards the Bitter Betty posters who are already coming out in droves complaining about those of us writing about the conference, I am not going to do it. Listen up. I know how it feels to not be going. I missed BlogHer one year - it was 2007, Anjali had just been born and X was persnickety about me traveling with a newborn. So, I licked my Feeling Left Out Wounds in private and moved on. Folks, the world does not stop just because a few of us are at a conference. Yes, we are excited. Most of us have been saving $$$ for this all year long and making special arrangements for it. Of course, we would want to talk about it. Anyway, if you have not clicked out of this post in a huff yet and if this is going to be your first BlogHer, I highly recommend Average Jane's BlogHer For Beginners post.
Truthfully, BlogHer has always been a mixed bag for me. I waddled my way through BlogHer 05 while heavily pregnant with Arun. I was not yet a Mommyblogger and I was still finding my footing as an IdentityBlogger. When Alice Bradley declared mommyblogging as radical act, I had no clue what she was talking about (respectfully, I still do not understand the statement since Erma Bombeck and Teresa Bloomingdale had already laid bare the irreverent Soul of Mothering decades ago. ) Anyway. My cankles and I had trouble finding a space where we felt that we fit in during that conference. Then, BlogHer 06, which found me secure in my Mommyblogger status and was very fun, had me feeling completely left out and my feelings were hurt more than once as I was snubbed several times to my face by A-listers. BlogHer 08? Was a much better experience for me - I was still directly snubbed by an A-lister, but by that point I was rolling my eyes about it because I gave up on Caring and instead, focused on my friends. Last year, I had so much fun with Monkey in a Suit, Brit, Average Jane and Rita. And all of the Sleep is for the Weak book stuff? Icing on the conference cake.
So, in a nutshell, my primary focus for BlogHer 09 will be Friends. I am bunking, sorority girl style, with Jane and Rita and Blondie (Tales from Clark Street!) If I make some new friends along the way, that would be grand, but I am not going to sweat it this year. Primarily, I am so excited about having a 3 day weekend to myself - this will be my first time without a child in my midst since Arun's birth and I do not want to waste One Single Iota on trivial matters such as "hurt feelings". If someone snubs me, what the fuckever. My parade shall not be rained upon.
That said, this year at BlogHer there are three people in particular that I am looking forward to meeting in person for the first time:
- Mrs. CPA - Kelly has been my friend forever now and I cannot wait to meet her and get all gooey on her and pat her pretty, shiny hair. Am v. sad that CPA Mom will not be there for the hair braiding, though.
- Jodifur - I will definitely be checking out her shoes! No pressure, Jodi. Heh.
- Jenny, the Bloggess - She gave me faith again in A-list bloggers with her willingness to be able to laugh at her own expense and forgave me for my crude references to her being a "drunken volcano". *DoubleGulp*
- Julia at Uncommon Misconception - I have been reading Julia for over 5 years now and she has been such an inspiration to me over the years. I directly credit her for sharing her experiences which made me appreciate my beautiful, healthy pregnancy with Arun. I tried not to focus on my minor aches and pains and as such, really relished that pregnancy, a gift for which I am forever grateful since I remember it now as one of the most contented periods of my entire life.
So yes, friends will be the focus this year. And friends include yours truly. As in, me, myself and I. I am viewing this weekend as my own personal sabbatical from my life. A boondoggle, if you will. In that vein, I am going to do a few special things for myself, some other activities that make me gushy and happy inside. Quite simply, knitting and museums.
I have started a knitting project that travels well and that I can work on while sitting in sessions. Frankly, now that I "stay at home", I am out of practice just sitting like a lump during meetings. Last year, I was a bit of a nervous mess with nothing to do during meetings and my stomach was in knots with nothing to do with my hands. I felt as if I was wasting precious time doing nothing and actually left mid-conference to hunt for some sticks and yarn. This year? I will come prepared. And yes, I am a Type A personality. Why do you ask?
The museum thing? I am also planning on sneaking out of the conference and walking to an art museum - probably the Art Institute and hopefully, the Museum of Contemporary Art as well. One of the things that I miss the most in this Life as a Mother is my lack of art museum time. I used to take Arun to museums when he was a baby, but for obvious reasons, that became more difficult as he got older. Now our museums are limited to the sort that display bones and bugs.
So, there have it - my plan of action (aka Kelli's Agenda) for BlogHer 09. Friends, knitting, art museum and most importantly - me.