Goodbye, farewell, and amen

Three years ago, I was a newbie blogger.  I didn’t know much about this medium, and I was still trying to figure out how to find readers.  I stumbled upon Julie’s Hump Day Hmmm.  I wrote a very personal, very difficult post, and posted a link on Julie’s blog.  Many of Julie’s readers left me lovely comments, and I went to read their blogs, thereby forming relationships with other bloggers. Instantly, I had found a community of readers.

One blogger left a comment both for me and for Julie.  Her comment on Julie’s list of posts was “Emily’s post knocked me flat and I haven’t gotten up since.”  I remember this three years later for two reasons.  One, I remember shit like that, which is either annoying or impressive, depending upon whether you like to be quoted back to yourself twelve years later.  Two, that comment was the encouragement I needed to keep writing, to envision myself a blogger and then a writer.

That commenter was Sarah, once Slouching Towards Forty, but now a few years Slouching Past Forty.  What can I say?  We all get older.

Sarah has been a friend and a colleague these three years.  She and I read each other (although as you know, lately I suck at reading blogs).  We email, we’ve even exchanged voicemails, but with five kids between us, we never seem to catch one another in. She is a remarkable writer, adept especially at imagery.  Perhaps too lofty a writer for this medium of click-and-click-away.

This week Sarah posted her very last post.

She has her personal reasons for leaving blogging, I am sure.  But to me, it is the end of an era.  The bloggers who started with me are drifting away, and while new bloggers are finding me, I feel like the curmudgeon in the corner grumbling, “Folks sure ain’t what they used to be.”  There are a few of us left – just a few – who have been at this for years, but with Chani’s death and Sarah’s exodus, my online world feels a little emptier.

My grandfather once wrote a poem about growing older that chronicled how one feels at each decade.  All the wrote for being an octogenarian was, “Did you ever feel you’ve stayed too long at the party?”

Yes, Grandpa, sometimes I do.

But, I’m still here, still clutching a paper cup with beer, standing in the corner, watching my friends head for the exit.

18 responses to “Goodbye, farewell, and amen

  1. Cheeky Monkey

    When I saw your title, I was like Nooooooo! Not Emily, too!

    Now I can breathe a sigh of relief. Ahhhh. It feels good to exhale.

  2. It’s always sad when I see a friend depart the blogging world, although I, too, understand why people need to take that step.

    You and I started blogging about the same time, Em, and I remember finding you by, of all things, using the “tag sufer” feature on WP. Sarah is right. You grabbed my heart with those really hard posts, and you remain one of my favorite people, not just as a blogger, but as a writer, a person, a fellow mother and a friend.

    I’m sorry to see Sarah go. However, I’m glad you’re still at the party, because I am NOT ready to let you go.

  3. alison brooks

    Don’t you dare stop. You have an international audience, you know!

  4. It’s hard to see them go – hard even to see people go when you only watched from the sidelines, read and didn’t comment out of shyness or fear or whatever.

  5. Yeah, I was a little worried that you were quitting too. I’ll hang out in the corner with you. But can I have wine in a proper glass?

    Sarah’s a good egg. I hope she finds a good audience.

  6. Sarah was one of my first readers, fellow bloggers as well.

  7. thanks, em. this made me weepy.

    i am sad to go. never think otherwise. if things had gone differently for me… i had really hoped to spin some sort of writing career out of the blog. it didn’t happen. so i’ve made the decision to get my head out of the blogging world and into my day-to-day life. my kids are nearly 13 and 9. it is time for me to find some worthwhile, productive, important work outside the house. and, being who i am, i couldn’t take steps to do that if i kept one foot in virtual waters. i’m too categorical for that.

    love you.

  8. oh, and p.s. i have no memory of writing that comment. you’re some kind of savant, yo.

  9. I’ll make sure that the beer in your cup is Abita, which makes it all good.

  10. I have to update my blogroll, and I was looking through it, noticing all the dead blogs. I’ve been blogging for so long and every time I think about all of the lives I’ve known, then lost again, I get sad.

  11. I’ve been blogging for 5 years now and most of the people from my original blogging circle are long gone. It’s hard watching “friends” go, even if you only “know” them by reading their blogs. I feel sad every time one of my favorites stops blogging. I figure I’ll be doing it for a long time though. I need an outlet for my pointless ramblings and poop stories.

  12. I think we began around the same time as I recall, and I would say its a very different place than it was “back then.” I kind of miss how it was, but then, I’m different as a blogger now too.

  13. I’m sorry that she is bowing out, but I’m glad you’re staying in. I always look forward to reading your blog.

  14. Hey, grab me a cup on you way back from the bathroom, would ya?

    Don’t always have much to say lately, but I don’t think I’m going anywhere just yet. Glad you’ll be around.

  15. don’t you go anywhere

  16. I’m not going anywhere. No matter what I occasionally say on a bad day.

  17. It’s so sad when an online friend folds up their tent. Understandable, perhaps. But sad for the people who stay.

  18. I miss Sarah, too.

    I’m still here with you, hanging by a thread.