Since launching my blog a few months ago, I have loved every minute of it. Sure, the building of it caused great stress and profanity to spew from my pores, but now that it’s done and up and on the go, it’s been amazing. I’m learning a ton about the blogging world, the importance of self-promotion (which I’m SO not good at) and the discipline needed to write my little head off all the live long day.
This week I wrote a blog post Why Every Woman Should Travel. Alone, which was definitely the first one to receive a substantial amount of views, shares, and comments. Seeing it gain traction and be shared on social media was like watching that little mountaineer on The Price is Right climb and yoddle his way to the top of the mountain and the big prize. It was a winner! And reading all the heartfelt comments and stories from women who have gained confidence and taken ownership over their lives through travel has been incredible. But through the love fest, something stood out to temporarily stop the parade and make me take pause.
It was a comment posted directly on my blog and it definitely packed a punch. It might have upset some people; it could have even upset me, but when I saw it, I roared. I cheered. I shared it with colleagues and we all had a good laugh, for I knew then that I officially became a blogger.
This was our exchange….
Tailia: Another brag blog by a priveleged white chick – yawn.
Me: Thank you so much for reading my blog! Since I’m new to the whole blogging world, every time I see the little orange-coloured comment icon light up on word press, I shriek with excitement that I’ve been privileged enough to get another comment from a reader, so thank you for that! I’d also like to thank you for noticing that I’m white….because I am! Let’s face it, you could have noticed that I could stand to lose 30 lbs or that I’m without make-up or fancy clothes or how uncomfortable I am getting my picture taken regardless of the situation, but you didn’t. You instead chose to focus on the objective fact that I am Caucasian. Very perceptive! It also means that you took the time to read the whole blog since my three pictures are placed at fairly even intervals throughout. You fell for my strategic visual move. Mission accomplished! I would also like to give you a big thumbs up for your spelling of the word ‘privilege’. That one is a toughie with a capital T. As an English teacher for the last decade+ I can’t tell you how many students I’ve had put a ‘D’ in there. You didn’t. You chose to double up on the ‘E’ which makes more sense. Why would they put a ‘D’ in there when you can’t even hear one!? I can only assume it’s because of words like ‘knowledge’, of which you have plenty, so I don’t need to tell you….
In response to the “yawn” end to your comment. I hear ya on that one. I am suuuper tired today probably because my non-privileged ass worked 3 jobs today as I do pretty much every day. I am fortunate enough to love my jobs teaching but I’m a workaholic out of necessity. You see, I come from VERY humble beginnings – raised by a single mom who was both mother and father to me and my brother, who also taught me that I would never get a free ride in life. She would say to me endlessly, that all success comes from integrity, honesty, hard work and kindness. I think I’ve always lived by those philosophies but even more now since my mother died eight years ago. You clearly grasp these concepts fully, so I won’t ramble on about how they make you a better person. You’ve clearly got them locked.
I will confide in you that I find myself in a bit of a conundrum because I LOVE to travel, which is not always doable when you have to work for every penny – hence the 3 jobs. I’m not complaining though because I get to use my 2 Masters degrees that I also worked really hard for. Yeah, you read that right – I have 2 Masters degrees (and that right there is bragging, btw).
In terms of your attempt to highjack my blog which is clearly a personal passion and created to inspire, I must say it is ironic that you chose the post that you did to try to knock me down. I wrote that post specifically for you and others like you. It all started a week ago when I was on the phone gabbing away with another white friend of privilege who has also recently started a blog about her passion of yoga. We were discussing how surprising it has been how many people we know who have not supported us. I was expressing shock that some of my closest friends and family members post pictures of their food and comment on cat videos on social media without showing their long time friend or family member one drop of love.
The convo eventually turned to why we, as women specifically, seem to go out of our way to NOT support other women for their successes and passions. And sometimes we even feel the need to cut other women down overtly in public forums or otherwise. We summed it up that with our new blogs we would never do that, instead making it our mission to nurture the female spirit and boost the confidence and capacity of women. We get enough of the opposite from men in society.
So I end my response with an apology to you. I truly am sorry that you missed out on that valuable life lesson that I thankfully did not. Nurture your fellow women. Lift them up, show them love, and give them praise for putting themselves out there and spreading positivity. It doesn’t mean you gotta like it all and agree with it, but you can still toss up a ‘good for you’, for trying.
I sincerely hope you read this response… 1) because it’ll have meant that you visited my blog twice (my google analytics will loooove you for that), and 2) so you know that the only bragging I was doing in my blog, was how we as women can do anything we want “with gusto and gonads” because after all, we’re women.
So Tailia, you will undoubtedly not be the last, but you are my first hater, so for that I thank you! If I had a chance to meet you in person, I’d probably even hug you. Let’s face it, you could use one.