I imagine it was just a regular day for you as you held your coffee mug and surfed the Internet for a quick morning read. Maybe after reading some of the blogs you normally follow, you had a few minutes to spare before you absolutely had to be on your way. It is possible you saw my gravatar on one of those blogs and something compelled you to click on it, or maybe you just happened to search through the WordPress Topics regarding 9/11 that day when my newly birthed blog lit up your screen.
Truth be told, my blog didn't consist of much that would light up a screen back then. I hadn't a clue what I was doing. I had no idea about the rules of blogging. I didn't even include an image in the post. I gave no thought to length, unaware of the rule/myth that blog posts should not be longer than 500 words. Apparently, that's the magic number when you lose a reader's interest. That original post was exactly 475 words. Maybe that's why it held your interest to the very end.
Regardless of length or lack of images, zero tags and no categories, you not only found my blog, but read my first post from beginning to end. I was thrilled to find one person had visited my blog and read my post. If I'm being completely honest I was over the moon, but that feeling was quickly replaced by sheer and utter exhilaration when I received a notification that someone had commented on my blog post!
Image: Andrechinn via Flickr
Twenty words on your computer screen as your fingers flew across the keyboard and you hit enter. Twenty words that travelled across the United States, floated over an ocean, and arrived on an island to appear on my laptop screen. Twenty words that encouraged me to keep writing. Twenty words which validated me as a writer. Twenty words that changed my life.
Since then, you have been a loyal follower, avid reader, and have continued to share your words of praise and encouragement with me.
"This was the kind of excellent writing that produces a raspy sob that catches in your throat so unexpectedly! An awesome reminder about perspective and pain."
"Your writing makes me want to spend the day in your archives wandering around wondering what else I’ve missed."
"Pure art. When you get me to cry, you have won the prize. You write so beautifully. This will be one I come back and re-read when I am not rushing off to work!!! I love your last sentence about hugs! "
"My heart is full. My eyes too. A grand story."
To any blogger, especially one just getting started, comments are that prize in the cracker jack box, the song on your iPod you keep going back to, the unexpected card in a red envelope when you open your mailbox. They put a smile on our face, warm our heart, and motivate us to keep pounding that keyboard and sharing our thoughts. One thing I know for sure is your comments have been all these things to me and so much more.
For this, I thank you.
Little Miss Wordy (Leah Vidal)
If you're a blogger, I invite you to revisit your first blog post and write a letter to your first commenter. Let them know what that first comment has meant to you!
If you're not a blogger, I invite you to leave a comment on someone's blog. You never know how twenty words might change their life!
More from living