A funny thing happened on Saturday. My website femalesolotrek.com became famous after my son posted about me on Reddit. He asked the Reddit community—as a gift for his 30th birthday—to please read my travel blog. I had no idea this happened. I was staying in a cabin in the woods where I had planned a family birthday party for him on January 20. I didn’t even look at my website all day because we were busy grocery shopping, cooking and walking in the woods.
Around 4:30 pm, I went online to check on clicks for my newly posted articles. I couldn’t understand the WordPress graphs. The numbers made absolutely no sense. It showed over 1,500 views. I called my son on FaceTime and said “What did you do?” And I saw his grinning face and I found out about what he wrote about me. It blew me away. So I want to thank every Reddit user who read my son’s post. Because you made my website grow to 2,100 subscribers in less than 24 hours. YOU blew me away by your awesome love and support. And you did this on his 30th birthday as a gift to him.
You see January 19 is one of the happiest days of my life. Thirty years ago, I gave birth to my son. And I knew from the second I held him in my arms and gazed at my husband that our lives would never be the same. Now I know it sounds sappy. But being a parent will change your life in so many ways that you can never imagine. You will laugh, you will cry, you will delight in them … and you will worry about your children every day of your life. And suddenly you will find yourself with an adult son and daughter who are your favorite people in the world. So I just want to thank you for reaching out to my son to let him know how much his Reddit post impacted you. He read every single post you wrote. I have also read and lingered over each of your posts to him. And I am extraordinarily impressed how you wrote about parents and grandparents who overcame divorce and death of their partner and illness. I also felt your pain and I am so sorry how life can suck right now. BUT I want to encourage you to take risks and be brave. We all get hurt in life. We carry a lot of sadness in our hearts. But we also have the capacity for extraordinary joy. I am pretty scared right now. I had a goal to get 100 subscribers for my travel blog in 2019. And suddenly I have over 2,000. I don’t want to disappoint anyone.
It took me four decades to get to this point. I tried to be a travel writer in my 20s. But I couldn’t earn enough to make a living so I became an editor of a trade magazine. When I turned 60 in September, I decided to take a gamble on myself and launch my own travel blog. This has been a dream come true for me.
Honestly the Reddit community has overwhelmed me with their support. And this all happened, like my son wrote, because I picked myself up after my life fell apart. And I want to encourage you to take risks and be brave. We all get hurt in life. We carry a lot of sadness in our hearts. But we also have the capacity for extraordinary joy.
My favorite modern poet, Mary Oliver, died on January 17. She influenced my writing so much with her love of nature and spiritual understanding of the world. I think her poems will speak directly to your heart.
“When it’s over, I want to say all my life, I was a bride married to amazement, I was the bridegroom taking the world into my arms.”—Mary Oliver
With my tears in my eyes, I want to thank you for amazing me yesterday. I love you Reddit community! Terri