If you followed me at all over the last few days on Twitter you will know that I found BlogHer'09 amazing! And completely overwhelming. Talk about information and sensory overload!
I met a lot of people and am now totally confused about who I met when and who is who, etc. etc. I still need to go through all my business cards and try and sort things out.
I had a mental list of people that I wanted to meet, many of them women whose blogs I have been reading since I started blogging four years ago. I was able to introduce myself to several of them and even have a conversation with a few. It must be a little strange to some of them to be approached like that by complete strangers. I always feel awkward doing it, so I have a feeling I come off awkwardly too. I was a little disappointed by the responses I received from three blogger's in particular, but to be fair I'm not sure I was approaching them at the most opportune time. And again, hello awkwardness!
I will say though that of the blogging "stars" that I met Anissa at Free Anissa has to be the most genuine person I've ever met! Someday I'm going to get a chance to talk to her when she isn't being accosted by all the other women who want to get in her bra. Jenny The Bloggess was the most gracious when I
Socially, in some areas I think I did better than I expected. Not knowing anyone there forced me to sit down at tables with strangers during the meals and sessions, and in doing so I met some very nice and very interesting women. In small settings (when I'm sitting down especially??) I'm not bad at actually talking with people.
I didn't however, make it to any of the parties in the evening, and I'm still deciding if I'm disappointed in myself that I didn't. Friday night I was exhausted by the time the sessions were over and was asleep by 10pm. Although I regret that I missed the specific parties that were held that night, I think staying in was the better choice. Saturday I don't have a good excuse for staying in, other than I really don't LIKE big parties with lots of noise and lots of people. So I have this internal debate going on, where I alternate between telling myself that its OK that I don't like parties and that there is nothing wrong with not going to something I don't like, and telling myself that I'm a looser and need to make myself do these things. I'm sure that because I didn't go to the parties I missed several opportunities to actually get to know some of the women I've wanted to meet for a while.
I've always been shy, and I don't think that is something that just goes away. It doesn't matter how many happy pills I take...the social anxiety doesn't ever really go away. I pretty much feel like I'm right back in high school.
Over all I'm very happy with the experience I had. I'll talk more tomorrow about what I learned and what I took home with me (and I'm not talking about the swag!). I think I'll do a few things differently next year, like have a roommate, who will hopefully