Monday, 9 April 2012

Following



I lost a blog follower today. I mull this over and decide I feel just a tiny bit abandoned and unloved.

 I can’t really afford to lose any followers. Half my followers are family and two people followed me twice. Then there are probably a few people who followed me hoping I’d follow them. And some who returned the favour and followed me because I did follow them. There are others who followed and most likely forgot about me and my blog a long time ago. And somehow, though I never intended, I managed to follow myself. So numbers are deceptive. And I am one follower down.

“Our blog lost a follower today,” I tell Jesus.

“I know,” He replies. “I once lost a follower too…”

Suddenly I’m feeling enormously silly.

Follow me? Follow Jesus.

“It’s not a popularity contest. Don’t get wrapped up in followers and stats. Leave our blog in My hands and just do your job… just write.”

And so I will.

But I can't help myself. “How’s our blog going, Jesus? Is anyone reading?”

“How’s your writing going?” He replies, not answering my question.

Why is it sometimes so difficult to just get on with our job and leave the outcome totally up to God?


25 comments:

  1. How can you follow twice? I tried to do a mass following for you, so that you'd feel really, really loved but Google won't have any of it:(

    Oh well, you'll have to make do with this, instead - xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox:)

    Feeling better, yet?

    (PS. Maybe, it's someone who decided to subscribe, instead.)

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    1. Vicky,

      You are a sweet sister and your love is much better than followers. I have no idea how anyone follows twice. I don't even know how I managed to follow my own blog!

      Losing a follower did make me think, and I think it's quite OK. Don't worry. I'm not pining away. I'm planning my next blog post whether there is anyone around to read it or not!

      Love you.

      Delete
  2. I'm reading, Sue. Keep writing! I love your blog! : )

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    1. Stephanie,

      Thank you for taking the time to stop and say those kind words. I always love sharing with you.

      God bless!

      Delete
  3. It's not me ... it's not me ... promise ... it's not me. I'm still following. I did slow down a bit when I tripped on my shoe laces. I fell all the way down the stairs too. I was asked: Did you miss a step? I replied: No ... I hit every one of them ... but I'm still following.

    God bless.

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    1. Victor,

      It can't be you because you're not one of my visible followers. As you always read and comment on my posts so faithfully, I assume you follow quietly or subscribe.

      You have to be careful with shoe laces, Victor. Perhaps shoes with velcro fastenings would be safer.

      God bless and thank you for your many comments!

      Delete
  4. Sue,

    First of all, this was an excellent post.

    Second, I don't "follow" people. In fact for a long time I didn't even have the follow option visible on my blog and then I realized that was silly, because there are some out there who like that option, and I should offer it to them. It was gratifying to see the numbers climb from 11 to over 30 in a couple of months, so I understand the danger you are writing of here.

    I read all my blogs through Google Reader and subscribe via a feed. You can put your feed statistics on your blog (mine is at the very bottom) and see how many followers you have that way. The beauty of those numbers, though, is that they fluctuate often and by 5 or 6. Not sure why, but one day I may have 185 and the next 178 and the next I am back to 182. But my point is, you just can't stress over that number as much because you are not quite sure what is going on. ;-) You just have to look at the big picture -- the overall rise over time. Sometimes I think it was better when that was my only option, but I do want to be reader friendly.

    I also drop many blogs off of my reader for Lent (not yours!). I clean it out and pare it down to my few essentials (which was still about two dozen this year!). It's nothing personal -- I just take a hard look at what is meeting MY needs at the moment. Then over the year more will slowly creep back in. I wonder how many other folks do that too?

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    1. Pam,

      My followers gadget appears and disappears depending on how I am feeling. Like you, I sometimes think it's an option some readers may like to take advantage of. At other times, I don't want to think about numbers and I remove it. Whatever the situation, I really don't think the number of followers is indicative of how many actual readers anyone has.

      There are some blogs I subscribe to but don't follow. And I have a clean out of these too sometimes. It doesn't seem so personal unsubscribing to a blog as unfollowing. I do hate hurting people's feelings!

      I've noticed how feed reader numbers fluctuate quite a bit too. I don't understand how this works either. Actually I hardly ever look at feeder numbers. Maybe I would take more notice if I put the stats on my blog as you suggested.

      Pam, thank you for reading my blog. I have enjoyed discussing this topic with you!

      Delete
  5. I just wanted to let you know that I read every post :)

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    1. Miu,

      You read every post? Wow! Thank you so much. You are very kind. Now that has put a huge smile on my face. I am so glad you have been stopping to say hello, Miu. It's great to share.

      God bless!

      Delete
  6. Poor Sue ;-) Here I am pouting because my mother blew out the Easter light from vigil, and you LOST a follower - now I can stop pouting about my little irritations and feel bad for you instead ;-) I know how you feel though, we manage a quiet little ap group and get messages when someone unsubs, it always makes me wonder why?? Of course, the reasons are myriad, people are too busy these days and we spend so much time online.....

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    1. Beate,

      You make me laugh! And get things into perspective. Yes, we do sometimes wonder why though... I think: did I write something that offended someone? Are my posts getting boring? And then I think: does losing a follower really matter? No it doesn't.

      Thank you for your comment!

      Delete
  7. Beautiful.

    Sometimes I wonder if anyone reads mine. I have maybe 2 or 3 who I think read at least some of my entries. But I have entries where I suspect no one has ever seen them. It does sometimes make you feel unloved, or that you don't matter.. or 'who cares' what I write or if I even write at all. And I am positive that not one of my family reads my blog. Maybe Amy occasionally, but that's it.

    But yes.. us losing a follower compared to Jesus losing a follower makes us realize how silly we can be. Pride, I guess? But, we are human, and you, my dear friend, are not alone in feeling that way sometimes!! :)

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    1. Susan,

      I read every one of your posts. They are a real insight into who you are and I love getting to know you better. Sometimes I don't stop to comment because we discuss things in more detail privately in a message but I do always read and think about what you've written.

      It's so hard to admit our human weaknesses, isn't it? I am getting better at laughing at myself as I get older. Sometimes I realise how silly I am. The funny thing is when I admit my imperfections, quite a few other people open up and admit theirs. I wonder why we feel we have to keep up an image of perfection all the time?

      Thank you my friend for stopping by and sharing!

      Delete
  8. It definitely wasn't me. I'd follow you twice if I could :) I haven't been on the computer much lately but I expect that will change.

    Sometimes they drop like flies! I lost seven in two weeks once. I laugh about it now but I admit it made me wonder, "What's wrong with me? Ouch!"

    Sometimes when people stop blogging they remove their profiles. It could be something like that. Losing Padre Pio really hurt me though ;) How about you, did you lose a saint? Lol!

    Humor aside, I loved both your post and your comments. We all have imperfections and you know what? I like imperfections. Seriously. I connect much better with people who are authentic. So please continue writing with honesty as you do.


    God bless!

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    1. Mary!!!

      I missed you. It's so lovely hearing from you again.

      I've no idea who I lost, Mary. I suspect it was someone who didn't have a link on her profile to a blog. Padre Pio? Yes, that would have hurt! I remember that funny series of posts you wrote about losing followers. We all had a very lively exchange of comments as we waited to see if any saints would disappear.

      And I'm glad you like imperfections, Mary. Sometimes that's all I have to offer.

      God bless you!

      Delete
  9. Aww..what a bummer..but you have to do what I do. I make excuses:
    -Maybe they just had a baby and don't have the time to read right now.
    -Maybe they gave up blogging and blog reading because they realized they are spending too much online and want to spend it with their family instead.
    -Maybe they are still following it, but secretly, or in a reader, where it's harder to track.
    -Maybe they have your blog address memorized because they love it so much, so they don't need to use the following thing anymore.

    =)

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    1. Elisa,

      Making excuses is a great idea. We shouldn't take these things personally. I guess it happens to everyone. Actually with all these comments and support I feel very fortunate rather than unloved and abandoned! I don't think I have anything to complain about at all.

      Thank you, Elisa for stopping by.

      Delete
  10. Love this post.

    Don't worry.. Some people don't follow or they read you in their google reader. My numbers fluctuate. I've learned to ignore them. Sometimes. :)

    God bless!

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  11. My comment disappeared!

    Love this. Don't worry. Numbers fluctuate. What's important is you keep writing!

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    1. Colleen,

      I love how you added the word, "Sometimes"! It is nice to know there are people reading my blog but I will try to ignore numbers and just keep on writing! Thank you for your encouraging comment.

      Delete
  12. At first I thought it said twenty comments...now I realize it's only two, and one of them is from Sue who replies to each person's comments - which I love.

    Am I your follower? I hesitate to ever click "follower" on any blog because I don't like how the internet knows so much as it is (about me). Tonight I ended up here, reading your posts.

    Oh happy fault! I just love that line from the Easter readings.

    I loved what you wrote about your success story (Callum dropping out of uni and that he even said you should write about it!)

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    1. Amy,

      You make me smile!

      I guess anyone who reads my blog is a follower, Amy. So that makes you one because you are always so kind visiting and sharing my stories. I know a lot of people don't bother to use the 'follower' gadget and become an official visible follower because they follow the links from Facebook or subscribe. It doesn't matter about follower numbers at all.

      Callum is so funny. I am not going to have a nursing son but at least I got a blog story out of his shortened university experience! Everything has a positive side. Even losing a follower has turned out well. Look at how many friends have stopped by to encourage me along!

      I am so pleased you ended up on my blog, Amy.

      God bless!

      Delete
  13. Hi Sue,

    I haven't been reading many blogs recently but your blog and Vicky's are two of my favorites. You are both so creative and encouraging. I just now enjoyed spending an hour catching up on them both. I love your stories and the way you tell them. Please keep writing as long as it fits into your life!

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    1. Willa,

      Thank you so much for sharing my stories, and especially for taking the time to stop and write such kind words. I feel so encouraged. Can you see me smiling? I always love chatting with you on our blogs.

      God bless you!

      Delete

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