[A personal note from Jes Ferris to the BlogHer community]
They say all good things must come to an end, and I suppose that’s true in some ways. Next month, a major chapter of my life will wind down to a close as I shut my laptop one last time, breathe a sigh of contentment, and bid my BlogHer co-workers a heartfelt goodbye. Or, I expect I will be breathing a sigh of contentment.
It could be a sigh of fear, or apprehension, or incredulousness at my own brazen actions. You see, I drank the BlogHer Kool-Aid back in 2006, when I first started working as a conference volunteer and attended my first BlogHer event. I worked every conference after that, coming on staff in 2008. When Elisa Camahort Page first called me to tell me that BlogHer was making my volunteer role into a full-time position with the company, and then asked if I was interested in that job, my heart stopped for a moment, my eyes lit up, and I mashed my lips together to suppress an ear-to-ear smile. Like someone had just told me I won the lottery, and I was afraid I was being punk’d. The entire reason I kept volunteering is because I had so much FUN working with Elisa and with the hundreds of speakers we’ve had over the years. And now she was asking me if I wanted to have FUN full-time! I didn’t even have to think about what my reply would be. Of course! Yes! I was pretty sure the only way BlogHer would get rid of me was to fire me, because I’d never leave on my own.
And now I am.
I’m not moving anywhere professionally, unless you count Chief Homemaking Officer of our household. If you want to keep up with me, I’ll be updating more often at my blog, Chirky.com, with a little of my extra time. I’m so thankful for this gift, this opportunity to fill my days by playing with and pouring into my daughter. I’m already gathering “tot school” materials for a little preschool time, and am planning to copy ideas with wild ambition and no shame from two blogs I daydream about: Princess and the Tot’s Tot School and 1+1+1=1 Rock Stars Preschool. I have high hopes that laundry won’t be in a perpetual pile on our guest room bed. I love to cook, and it will make me insanely happy to know that I’m providing homemade meals, instead of depending on take out and dining out and the few things I put together and freeze on weekends. And I know all of this may sound incredibly mundane to some: cooking and cleaning and playing, but it’s a small window in our family’s life that I wouldn’t trade for the world.
I’m thrilled about and excited for the opportunity to stay at home, but will miss my BlogHer family. I’ll miss talking with the BlogHer community every day, I’ll miss scouting speakers, I’ll miss giving input on conference sessions, I’ll miss the crazy-chaotic conferences, and I’ll especially miss my co-workers. I’ve always said that the people you work with and the spirit of the company you work for play an enormous role in your professional contentment, and with that in mind, working for BlogHer has been the best job I’ve ever had. Around the office, we’re calling my departure a “long lunch break,” because you never know if there’s an hour when I might return. And while this job has been amazing -- a dream -- my heart has been wandering in other directions, and I’m leaping after it.
So in a month, I’ll slip out the door quietly, beginning my newest chapter of caregiver, homemaker, teacher. In the meantime, I’m training my successor. And you'll meet her next week! [Updated with link.]
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