I feel like we've been growing up together. I started my blog just a few weeks before Work It, Mom opened for business last year. I became a member here on May 23, 2007, so I wasn't quite here from the beginning, but I think that when I joined the members numbered in the low hundreds. The first time I browsed the member directory, I think it was 10 pages - today it's 160.
I have been a working mom for 20+ years, and I've seen some changes in society during that time - but it's surprising and sad how much really hasn't moved forward, and how some of the challenges not only are still there, but they've grown. Some aspects of working-mom life have gotten more complicated rather than less, and it can feel like we're being held to near-impossible standards at times.
That's why this community matters so much - it's a place where we can find understanding, support, advice, and just vent when we need to.
For me, WIM has been the first online community where I've truly felt comfortable being an active participant. I've gotten to know members through their comments and articles here, and found many great new-to-me blogs to read via that connection (and some have found mine!). The reliance on member-generated content has really been great for me too; my articles for WIM have been my first steady writing forum outside of my blog, and I'm still hopeful they may help lead to bigger things in that realm.
I haven't been quite as active here in the last few months. I'm trying to compartmentalize certain areas of my life, chiefly work and writing (which are mostly unrelated), and it's been harder to make room for WIM sometimes. There's another thing too, although I feel a little guilty about mentioning it - while it's great to see the site growing and thriving, I'm feeling a little lost in the crowd. I know that such a feeling would make some people jump right in with both feet and make themselves more known, but I'm more comfortable with smaller groups; I tend to feel overwhelmed and pull back in large ones, so I'm conflicted.
But I'll sort it out, because I'm definitely sticking around, and I'm determined not to fade away.
Congratulations, Nataly, Victoria, and the WIM team, on all you've accomplished in your first year! Thank you for everything you've given your members. I'm glad to be here, and look forward to a great future together!