Wow. Last year was one of the biggest years of growth for me EVER. Professional growth that is, I actually shrank a little bit and I’ve been 5’6″ since I was 12. Professional growth. It all started a couple of years and a few months ago when some blog friends of mine introduced me to Social Fabric. I’ll never forget my first paid gig, but I refuse to let you look for it now because it’s SO embarrassing. I was proud. SO, so proud of that post. I was in and out of Social Fabric due to life situations and my struggle with postpartum depression, but around this time last year, I came back full force. I did an underwear campaign. I found out that a fluffy bunny lived in the same metro area as me and we bonded over cars and finger foods. And I found out that people actually liked my blog. Or me. Or maybe they’re one in the same. Whatever.
I was invited to become a furry mammal with a hard, flat tail and was thus thrust into the world of wonder. I worked so hard to get to SoFabCon13 and when I got there, I was like a shy little turtle in the middle of the highway. My fellow furry mammals with hard, flat tails knew everyone and everyone knew them and I was like, just WOAH. Just slow down for a minute. I was, for the first time in my life, an observer. It was fun, don’t get me wrong, but it wasn’t me.
Going to SoFabCon13 and being an observer last year opened tons of doors for me. I had the opportunity to meet people that I had been silently admiring for a couple of years. One of them sat me down and told me she wanted me to be a leader and gave me pointers for making that happen. I love that woman. I love her like we were born of the same parents, and lost one another, then found one another again in a strange, digital coincidence.
And I’m forever grateful for the people who have always put their faith in me in this community of digital influencers.
But because I wasn’t myself at SoFabCon13, people still don’t know how freaking awesome I am in person. I’m REALLY cool, y’all. Really cool. And funny. And not at all quiet. So I’m writing today to tell you about all of the things I’m NOT going to do at SoFabCon14.
1. I won’t be putting myself in a box.
Growing up, I was friends with lots and lots of people. It was always my mission to be popular, but not popular like that snobby cheerleader who talks badly about everyone and thinks her stuff doesn’t stink. I wanted everyone to know who I was, to like me, and to think of me as someone that they could actually talk to. That desire is both a blessing and a curse. As I’ve matured, I’ve realized the positives of that quality and I’ve worked hard to whittle down the parts of that quality that aren’t so good. I don’t like being judged by my affiliations. Instead, I want people to know the real me. So this year, I’ll be mingling more, reaching out to people that I notice are wallflowers, and doing my very best to whip excitement into the community as a whole. I’ll be bringing people together.
2. I Won’t Be Letting People Buy me coffee
One of the highlights of SoFabCon for me was when I stole away to this coffee shop I love with someone I had had a girl-crush on since I started writing for Social Fabric. She introduced me to the wonder of the shop’s inverted coffee press and we talked, and I was nervous, and we had fun, and we drank coffee, and then we went our separate ways. I still don’t know if she even likes me, but I had a great time and hope we get to do it again sometime. But now it’s my turn. I’m buying coffee for someone this year, so if I happen to be someone that you look up to, or *blush* that you have a girl-crush on, we’ll go to the coffee shop and experience the wonder of the inverted coffee press and artisan coffee, and chat, and it will be on me. The catch is that you have to come find ME and tell me you want to go get coffee. First person to find the cajones to make that happen wins!
3. I won’t be a Wallflower
Maybe your version of a wallflower is a lot more wallflower-ish, but for me? I was a complete wallflower last year. This year, I’m going to be myself. I’m going to be outgoing, I’m going to talk to people who look like they need a friend, and I’m going to search the crowd for people I’ve worked with this year who have really impressed me and tell them how awesome they are.
4. I won’t be Twerking
I’m not gonna lie and say I’m too classy for twerking (It’s fun, y’all), but I will say that I just really don’t want to make anyone jealous this year with my outstanding twerking abilities. Kidding. OK, so I might not be twerking, but I will be dancing my brains out. I will be reunited with an old friend from high school that I danced with, and we might reprise our old Stomp routine. And I will be sweating. A lot. And if there is a dance-off? Look for me to be shaking my groove thing. Just remember to yell really loud, OK?
5. I won’t be wearing footie pajamas to the Pajama Party
I’m not going to reveal anything else about what I WILL be wearing, but believe me. You’ll know HOOOOOHOOOO I am.
6. I won’t be writing stuff down.
Holy goodness, you guys. I tried writing at the sessions last time and it. did. not. work. I will be bringing my tablet with a wireless keyboard so that I can type everything out and to back to organize the notes later, all while using the record function on the tablet. I missed SO much by trying to hand-write everything down last year and this year? I don’t wanna miss a thing.
7. I won’t be forgetting my Business Cards
My dear friend was kind enough to remind me that I completely forgot my business cards last year. The thing is that I spent hours and hours and days and days designing these adorable business cards. I even purchased some super cute business card envelopes made out of the pages of a dictionary (this is so word-nerd of me). So when we got to the airport in Arkansas, I realized that I had left my beloved business cards at home. I blame The Workaholic, he did a final walk through for me and told me that I had everything. I didn’t. I would have rather forgotten underwear. Wait . . . Nevermind. . . Anyways, my dear friends spent the first few hours of our trip running around town with me trying to find someone to print them off real quick-like. This was an OH-SO-Summer thing to do, and this year I won’t be doing it again. My business cards are already packed. The ones I bought LAST year.
8. I won’t be missing my kids
Sorry, not sorry. I am a work-from-home mom with a husband who works a salaried job that requires as much attention as two full time jobs. This is a break from my insane, needy children and I won’t miss them at all. Mommy needs some fun too and this fuels my abilities to be a better mommy between events. Since I won’t be busy missing my children, I’ll have time to learn from our speakers and build relationships with the people that are there. So please forgive me if you’re talking about missing your children at SoFabCon and I look at you like you have snakes growing out of your head. I just can’t relate. But I still love you.
Maybe this video will help you understand where I’m coming from.
PS: My kids think this is the funniest thing EVER. It’s actually quite embarrassing.