This is a post about milestones…. and evolution …..and gratitude.
You are forewarned- if you think this is going to be boring, then please feel free to use the “Back” button! No hard feelings!
But then, a little blog history- My first post was in February 2014. In all the newfound enthusiasm of the neophyte, who thought she had things to say and share, I wrote about the sense of loss and bewilderment a cross-country uprooting brought with it and posted it. And sat back, congratulating myself…..
My son was the first to burst the bubble- Who will read your blog?, he asked.
Since no one appeared to be doing any reading so far, I carefully handpicked some of my friends, people whom I have known for long, people I valued and held with affection; and composed a brief sms; informing them that I have now become a blogger, giving the address, requesting them to visit it when they could spare the time….. I was known to them, a real-life friend! Every writer loves feedback and comments (and of course, adulation.) I was no exception!
And then, to my utter dismay and shock, I found that more than half of those friends never replied, never visited the blog, never by word or deed acknowledged that they read that humble sms, let alone the actual blog!
But the other half, the less than half, took the pains to read, to assimilate, sometimes to comment, mostly not. Their words gave me courage to write again- at least somebody had read what I wrote. Never mind if it was a single digit figure!
Sometimes the writings came on their own- and posts wrote themselves, with hardly an effort on my part; I was just a medium for giving them existence. The only commitment required from me was that of time! Sometimes a topic suggested itself and I researched it. I wrote about Buddhism, death and life, and about a brave warship. I wrote a poem, which entered my head one morning and did not go away till it was given existence. I wrote about finding a feather when there should have been none, and about spiders and ghosts. None of these topics were on my original agenda. The agenda itself got lost somewhere by the wayside!
I visited other people’s blogs and knowing now how a blogger felt, left comments if the entry spoke to me, instead of just lurking around. There was a modest number of followers to my blog too- people whom I do not know in real life and whom, most probably, I may never see with these earthly eyes, yet who felt real and close to heart. Wonderful people who shared similar interests and who loved words, despite all the time and distance and outward differences between us. Who inspire me and bring a smile to my face!
One of those days, idly navigating the WordPress admin page, my son discovered the Stats button and called me over. I was again shocked, but for an entirely different reason. The thirty-plus countries from which my humble blog had viewers included many which were only faraway names to me- Finland, Romania, Bulgaria, Turkey, State of Palestine, Myanmar, Republic of Korea, Sudan, Jamaica….. Somehow, my original intention of touching lives had rippled out. Somewhere, unbeknown to me, somebody had connected, was perhaps inspired, comforted, had picked up what they needed and had gone away rejuvenated- much like what I still do from the wisdom of so many authors.
I am grateful to my readers- known and unknown- friends or strangers-who are not strangers anymore! I too have learnt many lessons on the way; to be selfless, to drop (to a great extent) the craving for acknowledgement, a widening of horizons, the knowledge that we are all linked in spirit; some of us more so than others. In short, gratitude, the most powerful blessing a human can feel.
Last week my blog statistics touched 1000 views. For someone, who was resigned to be contented with a single digit readership, this is a great achievement . Thank you so much, from my heart to yours, dear reader.