OK, this isn’t working. I am and have always been a want it/want it now kind of person. And lately life hasn’t improved my patience. No one waits for anything anymore. Want to find something out? Hit 3 or 4 keys – instant knowledge – you don’t even need to type the entire query. Want a song, book, article, movie? It’s downloaded in a few seconds. We’ve become a society of just about instant gratification.
So although I’ve waited years to start writing again – now that I’m at it for all of the past three weeks, I want to be as successful as J.K. Rowling by tomorrow. OK, I’m exaggerating. I don’t expect to become richer than the Queen of England because I wrote a few lousy blogs. And I can’t imagine what Lego could possibly come up with based on my postings thus far. But forget JK and Lego deals; let’s say a notch less ambitious – as in Erma Bombeck. I didn’t immediately remember who she was, but my wonderful cousin read my blog and called me the Erma Bombeck of Monaco. One quick trip to Wikipedia later – and I learned the woman wrote a few columns and was in 36 US syndications within three weeks – just exactly as long as I’ve been blogging! She ended up having 30 million followers and writing 15 best sellers still in demand today.
I can’t help being a live-my-life-by-numbers person and I suspect I’m not alone. Look at Bridget Jones' diary – every entry begins with her counting something. And there writing a blog ropes you right in. You immediately get statistics – this many page views today, that many yesterday. This total in a week and this total overall. It’s extremely cool. Luckily they don’t track the times I check in to check my numbers.
Then there are the geographical statistics – this many views from the U.S. versus this many from France/Monaco and this many from Greece – thank you my family mou! I have a few followers in Australia and apparently quite a few in the UK. But I have zero reason to be cocky. I happened to see the hits on a very entertaining blog by an 84-year-old grandmother. It’s called Helen & Margaret. She’s more political than I dare to be – guess you don’t risk much expressing yourself at 84 – but when she called a certain ex-governor a b*tch, she ended up with more than 4 million hits! Can’t help but feel – could’ a, would’ a, should’ a.
Thing is, I really don’t need any more numbers to measure my life. I’ve always measured by numbers, and I don’t mean those preceded with a vertically barred S. My numbers are mundane – grades in school, calories as a teen (who am I kidding – calories every day of my life!) number of dates when single, number of raises when working. Who needs more pressure from a blog that’s supposed to be fun?
Actually, another blogger I admire told me to write for myself and if people stumble across the blog and enjoy it, great. Struck me as spot-on advice. So why did I start this? Because I like to stir my life up – keep it changing directions. To accomplish anything I need to put pressure on myself just as Tiger Mom puts it on her kids. I complain a lot, but ultimately I like it or I wouldn’t do it. Plus my husband just got his dream sailboat and I’m going to need something to keep me busy on the high seas. And I’ve always wanted to write – it’s what I love to do. So I typed my first blog on my iphone and jumped in. Because waiting gets you nowhere, really. Sure, a little more preparation would have meant a little less pressure. It would have been nice to consider what exactly I wanted to do, where exactly I wanted to end up. A few blogs in reserve for those ‘dry days’ when not a single idea comes to mind. But somehow I’ll manage. Life is short and it doesn’t hurt to up the ante.
As for those numbers – cool as they are, it’s all about perspective. While I can’t help counting the hits (and please, keep ‘em coming) there is ultimately only one number that counts in my life. That is ‘four’ as in 1 + 3 = my husband and my three sons. And luckily I don’t need to check the statistics on hugs per day, so really, screw the numbers - I have what I want. I am damn lucky and I know it!