I actually missed the moment when my little blog crossed that milestone. For some reason the usual, orange, oh-so-exciting notification didn’t pop up in the top right corner of my screen, so I didn’t see the transition from 49 to 50. Actually, I don’t remember going from 48 to 49, either. But there it is – on the far right of my screen. “Join 50 other followers”.
And I personally know only three of them! Most of my friends and family find my blog through my occasional facebook links instead, so 47 complete strangers have shown enough interest in what I have to say to click that “Follow” button. 47 people who don’t know me deliberately decided to join my journey. 47 teenagers, parents, fellow educators, and other interested writers participating in this world known as the blogging community are all engaging in the words and ideas of a nomadic teacher who wants to help prepare teens for life but doesn’t always know how. That’s so cool!
I know that in the grand scheme of the blogging world, 50 followers isn’t a huge number. I see other blogs with hundreds or even thousands of followers, but I don’t care. 50 is exciting to me. It’s so encouraging, telling me to keep going, keep writing, keep exploring. When I started blogging seven months ago, I had no idea what would happen. I just knew I had ideas that I couldn’t leave alone. I saw a problem that really bugged me and thought that maybe I could find a way to make difference. As I began dabbling in how to address the issues, it soon became clear that I don’t know enough yet. I need to research and learn more before I can offer any kind of solution to the world. But the problems still bugged me now. I still needed to write now, to give voice and vent to my pent-up ideas. I had to see if anyone cared, if anyone would connect to what I have to say, even before I have all the answers – or any answers. In the last 7 months, 50 people have connected and cared. Amazing.
I’m not going to lie – I have favorites. (Every teacher has favorites. It’s just our job to make sure we don’t treat them any differently). I love my teen readers. I love that they’re interested enough in what a teacher has to say to like, comment, and follow my writings. I hope they find some of my words meaningful. I love reading their blogs, too. They keep me focused on my goal. They remind me that teenage brains work differently than adult brains – and that’s a good thing! If we can work together to channel all that passion, energy, and ambition into practical life prep, amazing things will happen! Teens, you deserve better for your future than the “oh-you’ll-figure-it-out-if-you-just-explore-the-options” attitude that too many high schools seem to take. Please know that even if some of my posts aren’t specifically directed at teens, I’m always thinking about my teen readers as a I write. Always. Thank you for giving purpose to my ramblings.
I’m so gratified by my fellow adult readers, too. You tell me that I’m not the only one who sees the problems in the current system and wants things to change. You tell me that I’m not wrong, and even when you do disagree with me, you still ascribe significance to my opinion. You lend credit and value to my words. You also give me food for thought through all the varied, insightful, excellent writings in your own blogs. Thank you for that.
50 followers. 50 reasons to keep writing, keep exploring, keep sharing. 50 individuals affirming that I’m on the right track. 50 writers to inspire me through their own words and ideas. 50 reasons to be thankful at the beginning of a new year.