9 Years Later

DaGoddess @ 03:20

I thought I was coming to terms with the fact that I will be 45 on Wednesday, but apparently I was wrong. I mostly don’t feel like I could even be anywhere near that age. I am, though. And I got here because I’m lucky enough to have wonderful friends and family who have kept me from falling apart.

Then there was the sudden realization that today marks my 9th year of blogging. Wow! Doesn’t even seem possible. And yet, nine years ago I started the first incarnation (technically it was the second incarnation since Hometown AOL sucked big donkey hoohas and was too complicated to update on a regular basis) of this blog…first, because of Zach Galifianakis, then because life was complicated, because I needed a creative outlet, and because…well, just because.

Within a month I had a bunch of new friends and doors I hadn’t even noticed were suddenly opening for me. I joined Meetup to get together with other bloggers from San Diego. I went traipsing across the country for a vacation with a bronzed God of a Tall Dog. I met a woman who was very writerly and definitely not wanting to go down the mommy path who has now become one of the best mommy bloggers on the planet and is STILL a marvelous writer. I got involved in my community because of blogging. I became very vocal and more adamant about supporting our military. I got to write about the thrills and challenges of motherhood, came to better understand the depth of my love for my children in the process, and shared my joys and sorrows of mothering with people who also understood that particular journey. I got to regularly engage in dialogue with other people who had big ideas and who weren’t content with just sitting around doing nothing. I discovered I held the key to the chains that had bound me to the unhappiness in my life and I had people cheering me on as I set myself free.

I wrote and wrote and wrote, hoping that more answers would come my way. Surely, enough readers would come by and help me figure out all of life’s mysteries. Eh, well, that didn’t happen. Exactly. Yes, I did get answers, but I got a lot more questions, too. I stopped looking for answers and embraced the unknown, allowing the kind and loving encouragement from my blog friends to get me through the times when I was uncertain.

There have been a lot of changes to my life in the last nine years. The biggest, of course, was when I got hurt six and a half years ago. I was so lost and unsure about the future and damn if y’all didn’t come through again and help me through that. Not just financially, but emotionally. You kept my spirits up. You made me be strong when I just wanted to curl up and check out. You reminded me there was more to come…that there were still adventures awaiting me. And you were right.

When the time came for me to make my big move, once again, there you were. Keeping me focused on the reason I needed to move, the reason I had to leave my family behind. And you’ve kept me from losing my mind (kind of) when homesickness kicks into high gear.

I wish I could thank each and every person who has touched my life through this blog and from beyond, but it’s a very long list and there are many names I’m sorry to say I’ve forgotten over the years (the blogosphere isn’t exactly known for consistency and permanence). But please keep in mind: if you’re reading this, chances are you are one of the people whose name is on that imaginary list. And maybe just say hi in the comments and remind me so that I can actually create a real list. Hell, if I’d had any idea that I’d still be blogging after all this time, I would have kept better track of names and URLs and oh so much more!

Just so you know, within the last two months, I’ve been fortunate enough to renew a few of my early blog years’ friendships and it’s been wonderful! Catching up on kids and families and the funny turns our lives have taken is an amazing gift. And that’s why I’m glad my blogiversary and birthday are just two days apart — I get to celebrate friendships and this journey I thought I was on all alone, but instead have been fortunate enough to have you as companions.

If I could have just one birthday/blogiversary wish, I’d wish to bring all of us together for one day, for one big party. I’d want to hug each of you and thank you for all the love and laughter, ideas and dreams, thought and concern you’ve brought into my life. You’ve given me so much, some of which isn’t exactly tangible. It’s been an incredible journey and I look forward to wherever we end up in the next year…and the one after that…and the one after that one…etc.

Thank you for being here and for helping me retain whatever little grasp I still might have on reality.

This is a very sincere and profound thank you for nine years of friendship that has made my life much more interesting and exciting. I love you all!

my tree

silly clouds


  1. Happy blogiversary, and Happy birthday!! :yay:

    I’m glad to say that I’ve been a reader and follower for about eight of those nine years, and it has been my pleasure to be a part of your journey, as you are of mine.

    Here’s to at least nine more years! :toast:

    Comment by Amanda — 2011/05/16 @ 06:48

  2. :toast:

    It’s been a joy watching you start your family and seeing it grow! This is what it’s all about for me. These connections. Sharing our lives and all that entails.


    Comment by DaGoddess — 2011/05/16 @ 07:09

  3. Happy Blogiversary!

    I’m honored to call you my friend and it’s all because of blogging. Sharing the good times and the bad… what can’t blogs do? ;)

    Happy early Birthday, too. Remember, 45 is just a number.

    P.S. Please remind me of that in August when I turn 54. Thanks.


    Comment by pam — 2011/05/16 @ 08:00

  4. :hug:

    All started with the blogging and our weirdness kept us together. :rofl:

    It’s a pleasure to be on this journey with you, Pam. Love you!

    Comment by DaGoddess — 2011/05/16 @ 08:04

  5. Happy Happy!! It’s been great checking in with you all these years. You were one of the first blogs I discovered, and there was something about your personality that just clicked with me and kept me coming back. Cheers to whatever the future holds: hopefully all good things!

    And someday, girl, we’ve got to get together!

    Comment by DogsDontPurr — 2011/05/16 @ 18:34

  6. Happy Bogiversary. I have enjoyed followoing you in all your adventures {good and bad] and to remain in contact with you after so many years.You meet some of the nicest people in the most unexpected ways. glad to be a friend!

    Comment by karen — 2011/05/16 @ 19:37

  7. Happy Blogiversary. I hit 8 years of blogging myself this year.

    Comment by The Gray Monk — 2011/05/17 @ 00:59

  8. Happy Blogiversarry! I too am about to hit mine, 3 years.

    That would be wonderful, being able to meet all our readers in person (but scary).

    Comment by diamond dave — 2011/05/17 @ 13:47

  9. :grouphug:

    Love you guys (and gals)!

    Karen, we go so far back, it’s not even funny! Rock around the croc, right?

    Monk and Dave, happy blogiversary to you both! It’s a strange and silly world, isn’t it?

    Comment by DaGoddess — 2011/05/18 @ 00:50

  10. Marcie, Wow! I remember way back when we met. That was a special time in blog history. We were still a small enough community to be close, yet big enough to discover something new every day. And of course, there was Rob. Sigh.

    We’ve come a long way, baby! And we will get together soon.

    Comment by DaGoddess — 2011/05/18 @ 00:52

  11. Happy Blogiversary to the to the woman who was singularly responsible for my first tentative steps into the blogging world.

    Comment by Stu — 2011/05/18 @ 06:40

  12. […] blogger Joanie, who is 45 today. This entry was posted in Birthdays, Divine Hamster. Bookmark the permalink. ← Happy […]

    Pingback by Happy Birthday | Solojent — 2011/05/18 @ 07:19

  13. Happy Birthday and Congrats! Keep it up. I always look forward to your posts and new pictures. :heart:

    Comment by Retired Navy CPO — 2011/05/18 @ 07:24

  14. A bit late, but Happy Blogiversary and BD to you. I remember when I started 8 years ago, you were there to help me get my feet wet and swim. Gotta Keep On Truckin’.

    Comment by Wichi Dude — 2011/05/18 @ 13:48

  15. Happy Birthday and Happy Blogiversary too! You are a strong and brave woman! I like reading your posts, and I love your pictures…

    Comment by Mary — 2011/05/18 @ 19:03

  16. Hey, Happy Birthday youngster. You are still looking good.

    I just wish that my company white list didn’t list you as p0rn so I could check up on you from work during my lunch hour.

    And speaking of Rob, I know I sent “odd” postcards to help buoy up his spirits when he finally chose to fight his problem, but in the end his body just wore out. Its odd to say that about someone who was only a year older than myself.

    You take care. Its always fun to see the jazz/blues people you hang out with. May Laughing Rhino prosper and we see your photography showing up in the big time magazines.

    Comment by The Thomas — 2011/05/18 @ 20:25

  17. Congratulations,, still lurking around.

    Comment by James Old Guy — 2011/05/19 @ 16:27

  18. Still here with you, ma’am.

    Quite frankly, yours is one of the few blogs that actually does get better with time. You should be proud of that.

    All that love you have for us is reciprocated, you know. And there’s a hella lot more of us than there is of only one you! So, we loves ya more, see?

    It is truly an honor to enjoy your friendship.

    May many more years commence, and continue.

    Sunk New Dawn
    Galveston, TX

    Comment by Jim — 2011/05/19 @ 20:34

  19. :grouphug: :grouphug:

    Y’all made me get the tissues out to wipe the tears from my eyes. Thank you!

    Thomas! Jim! Jay! Mary! WichiDude! CPO! And some of the more regular suspects that I’ve already mentioned. I feel damn great just knowing you’re here. I don’t know why I could even possibly show up on any block list since I don’t write that offten and my topics are so tame (except the most recent where I may have been slightly interrogated to see if I was a prostitute, but that happens so rarely). No worries!

    As long as anyone is still reading, I’ll still attempt to write. And I will attempt to write something of substance at least…um…once a month. Maybe I’ll get back in the swing of things and get used to writing something of quality.

    Comment by DaGoddess — 2011/05/23 @ 05:11

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