Last Friday I read a post on Anissa's site where she mentioned a meet-up for bloggers in Atlanta taking place on Saturday.
It was free, local, AND they had beer.
I mentioned it to my husband in that way wives talk to their husbands about things they want to do but need the push to make it happen:
"There's like this thing downtown...with bloggers...and I don't know. Maybe I'll go...but I don't have anybody to go with so....I probably won't...and I won't know anyone....but maybe I will....I don't know."
First, my husband was scared that I expected him to go with me. OMG. He might have to hang out with a bunch of women and drink beer at a brewery.
Once I assured him that I definitely did not want him to attend. He came up with an idea, invite Tiff (otherwise known as Beeker and for the record, I'm Shotgun, don't ask, go with it.)
I was hesitant.
This blog is kinda, sorta, really a secret.
I was worried Tiff would be offended that I hadn't shared my blog with her. My husband assured me she would understand. I wasn't sure, so I sent her a 50,000 word, insecure, rambling email which basically said:
"I wanna go because I'm interested in starting a blog...but definitely don't have a blog, so yeah. No blogging going on 'round here. Please, please go with me!"
I'm sneaky like that.
"Jesus, Amanda. What's up with the long ass email? Do something just for you which has nothing to do with me? Uh, yeah, count me in. There's no Shotgun without Beeker!"
Of course she did.
So we went. When we arrived (an hour late) my nerves kicked in. I thought the event would be in a large private room where peeps would be standing and mingling. Maybe a keynote speaker. I don't know. I'm a rookie. Instead, everyone was seated around the corner of the restaurant's entrance at a group of tables.
The first people we saw were Julia Roberts (yeah, really) and Anissa, The Legend. I won't go into all the reasons I love Anissa, I'm sure you love her for the same reasons. After greeting Anissa and Julia we went to take our seat at a table down from them.
This is when things could have been awkward.
The area we were in had four high-top tables with chairs on one side and a shared bench on the other side against the wall. The tables were full and the last table sat by the corner about three feet away from the table next to it.
Shit. We're gonna be the weirdos in the corner.
Tiff and I couldn't decide if we should move the table over or not.
Hi, my name is Amanda watch me move furniture.
I didn't need to worry. The seated ladies told us to move the table over and they squished in to make room. We met Katherine and she was lovely. We met Jana and she was lovely. Then we met Miranda, Lauren, and Stacie, and we met some other bloggers too. Everyone was lovely. A group of lovely, smart women (and a few awesome men too. AHEM.)
It was amazing.
Y'all these women are legit. Like too legit to quit. For reals.
I can't name all of their credentials, but I was out of my league. Big Time.
The best part is that while I was there I had no clue how important these ladies are. None. They didn't talk about it. They didn't have to. These ladies are awesome and secure with themselves so they don't need to read everyone their resume. They listened to Tiff and me ramble, and they laughed at our lame jokes.
I have never felt so welcome and at home.
It's about to get even deeper up in here.
After reflecting (yes, I reflect - with my super duper handy dandy thought mirror I reflect. It's kinda a big deal.) about the meet-up I feel there is a deeper meaning to it. I'm not very religous but maybe Someone (God?) was opening my eyes. The ladies I sat with have dealt (and are dealing?) with postpartum depression. Was Someone showing me that if I have a baby it's not necessarily the perfect life I dream of, there may be issues that come along with giving birth, and support is there for me if I need it?
Whoa. That's some serious shit.
Miranda. She's totally my sister from another, er, mister. We each had our wedding at the same venue, when planning my wedding, two years ago, I came across her bridal profile on a website. I pored through her photos for ideas and tried to find her email address to ask some questions. I had no luck then, but Saturday she sat across from me. Maybe people come into your life when they're supposed to.
Tiff. Wow. What can I say about Tiff? That I love her? Yes. That she's a true friend? Yes. Tiff has been my rock these past months. Before my miscarriage I thought I knew what friendship was. I didn't. I do now.
Because of Tiff, I know.
We spent most of the weekend together and at one point she jokingly asked:
"So is that best friend spot filled yet? Are you gonna let me fill it?"
I laughed and said, "You already have."
That's the truth. She filled the best friend slot years ago. It took this weekend and this event for me to see it.
Thanks for the meet-up, ladies.
Thanks for being my best friend, Tiff.