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BlogHer ’15: A difficult decision

I‘ve been stewing about something for quite some time now – a couple of months, at least. Oh, I haven’t been thinking about it every minute of every day – but it’s always there in the back of my mind, nagging at me, reminding me that I need to deal with it and make a decision already. So this week, finally, I did.

I have decided NOT to attend BlogHer ’15 this summer.

This may not sound like a big thing to you, but it is momentous for me. See, I’ve managed to find the money to attend the conferences for the past three years, and was greatly anticipating this next one (especially since it’s going to be held in one of my favourite places, New York City). And short of buying my ticket and booking a hotel room, I’d committed to going – to my roommate, to other friends, and to myself.

But 2014 was a very expensive year for us. If you’ve been following Alphabet Salad for awhile you might remember that over the past months we made some large (to us) household purchases… we had some unexpected expenses… I took a costly flight to San Jose for BlogHer ’14… and, perhaps most importantly, I didn’t receive a significant sum of money that (based on precedent) I’d both expected and counted on. All of this added up to the knowledge that funding my attendance at BlogHer ’15 was unlikely, if not impossible… yet I’ve been reluctant to admit it to myself and make the final call.

But the deadline for early bird conference tickets is fast approaching, the hotel block isn’t going to last forever, and the last thing I want to do is to leave my roommate in the lurch by springing the news on her when it would be too late for her to make other plans… so I knew that I needed to bite the bullet and make a final decision, NOW.

And so I did. And I’m not going to go.

I’m struggling with disappointment, feelings of failure, and the knowledge that I’ll be missing an opportunity to make connections that will help me take my blog to the next level. I’m heartbroken that I won’t be able to spend time with my lovely roommate for the fourth year in a row, or catch up with all the friends I’ve made at previous conferences. And I’m already feeling left out because I won’t be there to take part in what promises to be an amazing event.

I know that I’ve made the right decision.

But that doesn’t make it any easier to handle.

Have you had to make a similar decision?
Please share!

NaBloPoMo January 2015
Write Tribe
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Laurel Storey, CZT – Certified Zentangle Teacher. Writer, reader, tangler, iPhoneographer, cat herder, learner of French and Italian, crocheter, needle felter, on-and-off politics junkie, 80s music trivia freak, ongoing work in progress.

{ 38 comments… add one }
  • Cheryl Jones January 17, 2015

    I’m so sorry, Laurel, that you can’t go this year. I know how much you enjoy these things because I’ve been following along and read your write-ups about them every year. I hope things work out so you can go next year. *hug*

  • Diane
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2015

    I totally understand. I’m sitting in the same (financially strapped) boat.
    Diane recently posted… And Then There Were TreesMy Profile

  • Carol Graham
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2015

    HEAR YOU – loud and very clear. It is never easy to make these kinds of decisions and my word of advice whenever someone asks my opinion is Don’t let emotion make the decision for you.” You didn’t and that is why it is the right decision. You based your decision on fact.

    I have to make these decisions more often than I would like because my husband is disabled and has more bad days than good ones. It affects my life in every area and for that reason, I have to figure out what and when I will do certain things. I thought about going to the conference as well and have been pressured by friends to attend — but my head tells me it is not wise. Sure, you feel discouraged for a moment but knowing you made the right decision carries a lot of weight. Good for you!
    Carol Graham recently posted… Do You Believe In Fate?My Profile

  • Alana
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2015

    You thought this over carefully and you know you made the right decision. Of course, you have regrets. We always do because life is rarely black and white. For you, I hope life permits you to attend BlogHer ’16. I never quite had to make a decision like you did. But, in 2013, I was deeply disappointed I could not attend the 150th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg (the most major battle,perhaps, of the U.S. Civil War). I had already taken the time off from work but couldn’t find a place to stay. But, at the last minute, I was able to visit a dear friend living some 5 hours from me, who was seriously ill. The next time I was able to visit her, she was too ill to see me and it may be a long while before I can see her again. So having that time free turned out to be a great blessing. I hope something good ends up replacing BlogHer ’15 for you, Laurel.
    Alana recently posted… Local Saturday – Green Eggs and Maybe HamMy Profile

  • Life Breath Present January 17, 2015

    I know that was a tough decision, but you did what’s right for you, right now. That’s even more important.

    I won’t be going again this year, but I’m sure hopeful I can go at least once….
    Life Breath Present recently posted… Launching….My Profile

  • Mary Burris
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2015

    When you’ve been an active participant in events such as this, it is always a very difficult decision to make. Perhaps you will find another event to take it’s place – one that doesnt cost as much to attend.
    Mary Burris recently posted… Blame Canada Series: Day 7My Profile

  • Shilpa Garg
    Twitter:
    January 17, 2015

    I can understand your situation. Happens to all of us. We have to take some tough and hard decisions based on our circumstances. It’s all about weighing the pros and cons and taking a decision without regrets and you did just that! Hope something more satisfying and enriching works out for you! Cheers 🙂
    Shilpa Garg recently posted… Never-Ending WinterMy Profile

  • marika January 18, 2015

    I know that you are disappointed, but I do think that when something doesn’t come through, there’s a reason, and it might be in your own back door. I have just joined a new writing group and it is like an injection of creativity. Why not explore what opportunities you have in your city. If nothing else it is always fun to be a tourist in your own town, do some exploring, I bet you’ll find a lot to post about.
    marika recently posted… a-MUSE-ingMy Profile

  • Judy Freedman
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2015

    I hear you. I am going because BlogHer’15 is nearby in NYC but if it was on the west coast I would not be going. I’m not staying at a hotel either due to the costs. Conferences get expensive and you have to pick and choose. I know it is hard to do.
    Judy Freedman recently posted… Take Me Back To Warm MiamiMy Profile

  • Dorit January 18, 2015

    I’ve never been to BlogHer but I heard amazing things about it. I wish I could go to experience it in NYC, my hometown. I can imagine how you must feel. I have to agree with the comments above. In these kinds of situations, thinking with your head is crucial.

  • Inderpreet
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2015

    Such a difficult decision to make. Hope it works out.
    We all face this sometimes.
    All the best.
    Inderpreet recently posted… Snap Your Week 3My Profile

  • Lux Ganzon
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2015

    Laurel, I can so relate to you so yes I totally understand.

    I’m sorry though that you have to make a tough decision and stick to what you feel is right. I’d like to say all thing happen with a purpose but I know you already know that.It’s normal to feel bad though. Allow yourself to feel it, besides it’s just temporary.

    I hope you’ll get a second chance next time. Wish you all the best.
    Lux Ganzon recently posted… 4 Ways To Silence Your Own CriticMy Profile

  • elly stornebrink
    Twitter:
    January 18, 2015

    That’s such a shame and disappointment for you Laurel: sorry to hear! I hope that something else just as promising or even better shows up for you. This is something that we all face at one time or another and it is only in hindsight, after the fact/event, that we may understand and realize why. I hope you are able to come to that realization sooner rather than later. In the meantime, know you have dedicated faithful followers who love your blog posts! 🙂 <3
    elly stornebrink recently posted… Gratitude List #1My Profile

  • Sammy D January 18, 2015

    Laurel, I’m so sorry. I can understand how disappointed you are, and I’m sure there are many who will miss your presence. I hope now that you’ve finalized your decision, at least your stress (if not your disappointment ) has lessened.
    Sammy D recently posted… Cadence Meets Keyboard in 2015My Profile

  • Adela
    Twitter:
    January 19, 2015

    I cannot see my way to finance the way this year either. It would be my sixth time. Instead, I’m going to BAM in Nashville. A little less expensive, a little smaller, and perhaps a little more nourishing. I will miss BlogHer 15. I know I will. Last year, I purchased a second hand ticket, got a roommate, and justified the plane fare with a last minute windfall. Could happen again.

    Then again, I decided this month that I must focus more on getting my book published. Sometimes we must let the familiar go in order to reach for the next opportunity.
    Adela recently posted… Gratitude Monday #62My Profile

  • Joy
    Twitter:
    January 19, 2015

    So sorry, Laurel. I can feel your disappointment but also know that this is what you feel as the wisest decision for now. I’ve signed up for the BAM and it will be my very first blog conference EVER. Honestly, if I only factor in earnings from my writing, I really shouldn’t go because I can’t afford it. But my husband encouraged me, just to break out of my shell and try it even just once. I figured it’s a smaller group and might not be too shocking for an introvert like me. So I’ll go. However, I also know that for next time, I really should be more practical and think of how the finances are balancing (the money I’m getting / earning myself vs. what I’m spending for my blogging). We all need to be practical, right? 🙂
    Joy recently posted… It’s Not Just a ConfessionMy Profile

  • usha menon January 27, 2015

    Laurel, I can undertand your feelings. Such things happen. We have no control on them. Just leave thoughts of going. You will better.

  • Kathy
    Twitter:
    July 19, 2015

    Hi Laurel! Sorry you had to miss Blogher this year. I’ll bet all of us have one or another things that we wish we could do (or have done) but as you say, remembering what we are grateful for is one sure way to turn our thoughts around. Me? Right now I’m grateful I was able to get out and take a walk/hike with my husband and dog this morning before the afternoon shower. 🙂 Life is good! ~Kathy
    Kathy recently posted… Midlife Desperate—5 Ways to Cope With Life At This StageMy Profile

  • blogqueendiane
    Twitter:
    July 19, 2015

    I just came back from BlogHer15 — my first blogging conference– and wrote a blog post about what it cost for a frugal person to go, which I thought might be helpful to other people. It wasn’t cheap, but it was a very cool experience! If I can save about $3 a day during the next year, I can probably go back.

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