"Tug on anything at all and you'll find it connected to everything else in the universe."-John Muir
A couple of weeks ago or so I was reading comments on a post on The Mommy Psychologist's blog, a blog I found and added to my reader when she commented on a couple of posts I'd written here. The comments I was reading were responding to the question of "Why do you blog?" One commenter's response led me to go read her blog, and then in reading some of her blog posts I noticed she mentioned another blogger she had met and who had been very supportive through a loss. The blogger had a name I've only known one other person to have, and sure enough, when I clicked through the link, she was referring to someone I actually know offline. She is a former coworker who left my company early this year when she and her husband decided to move to the other side of our state. We had vanpooled together, and she's a lovely woman who I enjoyed every time we had a chance to talk. She'd done some interesting things in her life and she's one of those women who is enchantingly beautiful in a very fresh-faced sort of way - thick, curly hair, features that need no makeup, tall and athletic. Not stuck up, and no Debbie Downer. She's got a positive and upbeat nature, and even when she and her husband were dealing with some issues over living situations and jobs she would always find something to smile and laugh about.
So I found myself in the position of finding a blog of someone I know sort of peripherally, and she's someone I worked with but don't work with now. But the thing is that I find her bright and refreshing, and the next thing I know I'm reading her blog from her earliest entries onward, smiling at the posts where she talks about meeting her husband and getting a little misty over the wedding photos. At first I was just curious, but then I realized I really like the way she writes and the things she writes about. And yet the whole time I'm thinking to myself, "Is it weird that I'm learning more about this person through her blog than I learned about her in two years of vanpooling together?" and "Gosh, I hope she doesn't look at her pageviews and sources and think I'm stalking her..."
And its an interesting question, isn't it? Because in the very act of making a blog public, she and I and all the other bloggers out there, we're putting some of our lives (hopefully not all) out there in the public view. And how does Ru or any other blogger feel when she realizes that someone she knows offline, somewhat in passing, is now reading her blog? (I did out myself in her comments, it felt somehow wrong to be ninja-reading.)
I know that it surprises me when in-laws or family friends bring up my blog in a conversation. It makes me feel far more undressed, as it were, than when I think the people reading my blog are folks who live somewhere else, who've never met me in person - or who aren't my mother. I forget that there are people in my small audience who actually do know me offline. Its just...odd.
I'm tickled by how I found Ru's blog, though. I love those moments in life when we are happily surprised by a connection we didn't even know existed. I remember realizing that my friend Steph, who I've known since I was pregnant with Race Car Man, also reads Adrienne's blog and vice versa because Adrienne commented on one of Steph's posts. I get unreasonably excited about things of this nature. "Look, this friend who I think is so cool also knows this other friend who I think is so cool, and we all know each other and we didn't even know it, isn't that freaking COOL????"
So Ru, I hope you're not discomfited that I'm reading your lovely blog and enjoying all of the pictures of you and your hubby and your family!