Blogging Friends are Real

Woot to Wednesday!  In a few hours I will be climbing on a plane all by myself for the first time ever and jetting off to BlogHer.

While I am gone, you can read about my childhood travel memories at Kludgy Mom’s place.  And of course you should stick around here and meet my newest Sluiter Nation Recruit!

Wait.  You don’t know what a Recruit is?  Well start here!

Today’s Recruit is Jessica from Four Plus an Angel. I met Jessica through The Red Dress Club.  I remember the first time I read her writing my jaw hit the floor.  She write so beautifully about the wonderful things in her life…but also about the stuff that is hard. 

Jessica became a mom when she was just a teenager to a beautiful daughter with autism.  She also gave birth to triplets, but lost one.  And then she had a handsome little rainbow baby.  She has so much that has been hard in her life, yet her writing has hope surging through it.

Jessica is one of the most beautiful souls I have met here on the interwebs, which is why her post today is so perfect.

Enjoy.  I know you will.

*************

I have heard it said that blogging is like high school but I don’t see it.

I have seen cliques here and there and competition and bloggers jealous of the amount of friends another blogger may have.

But I have also seen support and honesty and lifting each other up instead of putting each other down.

In high school, I never quite found my place. As much as I tried, I was always at the edge of one crowd or another but never in the center.

I was not the first one to be called when plans were being made and I’m sure there was plenty of talk about my monstrous glasses and clothes that were not always name brand.

But in blogging I have found my place, I have trusted the blogosphere with the most fragile details of my life and I have always been handled with care.

I have found women who so closely relate to my life that I wish they lived next door and women who are my complete opposite but can keep me laughing or tweeting for hours.

I have put myself out there and socialized with big bloggers and have been welcomed with writing tips and nods in the world of social media.

I have poured my heart out on my own site only to find virtual hugs and the most beautiful words I have ever read, all just for me.

This week so many of you are heading to Blogher. I won’t lie and say that I do not feel like I am missing the biggest party of the year but I will say that I am okay with staying home.

There is not a single part of me that is worried my blogging friends will be discussing what I wore during my last vlog or whether my header and my sidebar coordinate because blogging is about so much more than that. It is about sharing and relationships and finding people who you see yourself in and putting yourself out there in hopes that someone sees themselves in you too.

Now I know when you all return you will be talking about the good times that were had, the bottles of wine that were consumed and the last one to leave the dance floor but I also know that I have made true friends in this blogging world. And when I ask you how much fun you had you will say that you wish I was there too.

and you will mean it.

Because I’ve made life long friends around here.

*************

You are right, Jessica.  We DO wish you were going.

You need more Jessica in your life.  You so do.  First go follow her on twitter and add her blog to your reader.

Then try this sampling of Jessica’s work.  You will be hooked!

Not just another baby bump post…In a Heartbeat (waring:  read with a tissue)

Her oldest, beautiful daughter–who happens to have autism…My One (warning: don’t throw the tissue away)

And to end in a pile of cute, a vlog…My First Vlog

Thank you, Jessica for coming to be a part of Sluiter Nation!  I will drink a lemonade for you at BlogHer!

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About Katie

Just a small town girl...wait no. That is a Journey song. Katie Sluiter is a small town girl, but she is far from living in a lonely world. She is a middle school English teacher, writer, mother, and wife. Life has thrown her a fair share of challenges, but her belief is that writing through them makes her stronger.

Comments

  1. I love Jessica. LOVE.

    Jessica, thank you for writing this. I was feeling sorry for myself about BlogHer (as it’s near impossible for me to ever go to one), but reading this? I feel better, I really do.

    Bloggy friends are real, yes, yes, they are. Can I call you my friend? (and you too Katie!)

    • Um, OF COURSE you can call me your friend! I’m glad this post made you feel better. We can hang out while all of our friends are at the big party this weekend ;).

  2. Bloggy friends are definitely real. And you know what? SO much better than high school! Great post Jessica, as always!

  3. This is such a great post! Jessica, I hope you know how much your words touch those who read them.

  4. This is a perfect post Jessica.
    I’m such a random blogger, yet, I still feel as though I’m accepted. The support is so wonderful.

  5. This was a really heart-warming post. I enjoyed it! And I agree, most of the bloggers out there are just lovely people looking for connections and a place to feel like we belong. Feeling warm and fuzzy now πŸ™‚

  6. I don’t think any of us ever found our place in high school. I think that’s what high school’s for, to make you all insecure and crazy so you go out and find who you really are when you leave it behind.

    Lovely post, Jessica. It is amazing how encouraging everyone is online. I rarely find that in real life.

  7. I really, REALLY wish you were going and you will be missed πŸ™‚

  8. You have been a special friend to many and support so many blogs. Taking the time to do all that has built an amazing community.

  9. Jessica, I do love your blog. Also, I totally wish you were going. But it doesn’t matter that you’re not. You’re still an amazing writer and that’s why people will come back!

  10. Whether or not we go to blog conferences, I think what matters is the community we’re all building online and offline. The blogs are what keeps us going, and sharing ourselves with each other in our posts is what connects us more than anything. So thank you πŸ™‚

  11. this MAY be the first piece of writing that I’ve read of Jessica’s that I haven’t needed a tissue for πŸ˜‰ great post Jessica!! I’d like to go to a blogging conference sometime, but I’m okay with not going right now too, for all the reasons you mentioned… thanks for sharing!!

  12. Well I think you’re both great. I wish I was going too Jessica. Maybe next time?

  13. This is so true, Jessica. Blogging definitely doesn’t have all of the drama and cattiness of high school. 99.9% of the people I’ve met have been warm and giving. I’m shooting for 2012 for blog conferences!

  14. The 3K women and 6 dudes will miss you. I enjoy reading you on a daily basis.

  15. SO true! I wish I was going, but I know we will still be friends when everyone gets back. And someday? I will meet you all, and we will hug as if we’ve seen each other every day IRL.

  16. I’ve only recently discovered you through Summer Blog Social, and now here. I look forward to getting to know you better!

    When I first started blogging, I was one of the ones that said it was like high school. It seemed like it at first. Then I realized its because I was still the shy one. Afraid to put myself out there. Once I did, a whole new world opened up to me and the blogging community began to embrace me. It was a beautiful moment in my life, for the outcast that had never belonged, full of emotion. Now, I have such wonderful friends that I wouldn’t trade for the world! Great post!

  17. it’s a post like this, that makes people like ME just adore you Jessica.

    I am so glad that you are in the Blog Universe and that you have touched us with your words so many times. I never put the tissues away when I read you.
    xo

  18. I’m not going either. And while I’m excited for those who are, I’m honestly looking forward to when it’s all over and the dust settles and the talk dies down so that we can all get back to doing exactly what you’re talking about and just blog and get to know each other. I’m feeling a little BlogHer-weary, I admit. Although, I’m now all set for next year! πŸ˜‰

  19. Jessica –

    Everything about you is beautiful.

    Thanks for your words here and at Four Plus an Angel…

    You speak to a part of my heart that no one else does.

    Like I said. Just beautiful.

    XO

  20. Jessica is fantastic!!

    In the short time I’ve been blogging I’ve met some really great women who are very supportive, kind, and real! Loving it!

  21. I love your writing, Jessica. You make me feel, bring me out of my funk, and I hug my son a little harder. Your courage and strength inspire me to be a better mother, a better writer.

  22. Lovely post, Jessica. It’s wonderful that you’re so at home in the Blogosphere. Not-at-BlogHer-Bloggers unite! *fist bump*

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