Progressive Pudding... Why I am Here.
Undoubtedly, we've all been asked why we're here. No doubt, most of us have joined for the scholarship. I too was in that category a year ago; I joined for the scholarship opportunity. I found this site through another scholarship engine, as no doubt many of you have.
And I don't feel that there is anything wrong with that. No one should be made to feel as though finding this site or using this site for the opportunity of a scholarship is bad. Hopefully, as the Community of Progressive U grows, people who have come for the scholarship will stay for other reasons.
What we need to do is find those reasons.
I have been reflecting; why am I here? Do I want / need the scholarship? Most definitely, don't we all? During my first go round, I don't even think I was noticed, to tell you the truth. I had posted up a total of maybe 20 blogs or so. During the Fall 2006 competition, I received an honorable mention. My buddy list started to grow as I began to talk to more people and write more. But I continued to write even between these three contests. There was still another reason that I was here. There had to be, or why would I continue writing?
Not long ago I began receiving some very hateful emails from some Progressive U users; complaining that I wrote too much, accusing me of cheating - just down right hateful. I considered quitting; let someone else win - that's what they want. But I decided instead, through the direct support of some of my friends here on this site, to continue on and continue making an earnest effort towards this contest.
Then I received an email from another friend of mine, a semi-newcomer to this site, asking how I did it. How do I handle all the bad on this site, the personal attacks, the accusations, the arguments? How do I go through these things and come back and continue writing and commenting? How do I not retaliate? Could I help her through some of the attacks that were falling on her?
I had to sit and reflect. How do I do it? More importantly, why do I do it. Yes, the scholarship means a lot to me; of course I would not turn it down if I won. But is $500, or even $1,000, worth that much stress and criticism?
I can tell you, it is worth it, even if you don't win, if you find the reason you are here.
Well, here is an example of what I have come to love about Progressive U:
Submitted by Fallon on Tue, 04/24/2007 - 4:40pm.
I know. I said some Christians for that very reason. :)
Submitted by meburgos on Tue, 04/24/2007 - 4:48pm.
Just thought I'd
Add proof to your pudding...;)
Since they were soooo sure that everyone believes the way they believe...
Submitted by Fallon on Tue, 04/24/2007 - 4:54pm.
Submitted by Fanaile Essence on Wed, 04/25/2007 - 11:39am.
? Pudding! ?
This conversation went on resulting in a new recipe for me for homemade Chocolate pudding...
This conversation is one of many that I have become privileged enough to participate in, though sadly I no longer have the links available to share with you (though, as new conversations come up I will try to update this and give you new links)
That's when my reflection came to a head. I came here for the scholarship, but I am here for these conversations. Progressive U really has grown into a community. Sure, we all have Buddy Lists, some of us use them for different things. But it's different, and that much more important, to recognize the Community that Progressive U has become.
Now I am watching as members who were here when I first joined and disappeared shortly after the scholarship ended (or even before the scholarship ended) come back and begin posting again. Debatechick has rejoined the Progressive U Community as a moderator, Reboloke as well... Cadet has returned a year older and just as articulate... Peppermint Frost (a past winner) as returned recently and is just as strong in her beliefs as ever. Mike (embryowassup) has been vital to helping to guide people grow in their writing and in their blogging with his advice and support.
So to those of you who are new and joining in this community, I'd like to say welcome, and if you'll allow me, to pass on some advice.
This is a place for debate, expression, and argument. There will be people here that hate you, are hateful towards you, will call you names, will call you stupid, and will criticize you for being "you". You will receive outside affirmation for your works, and in the next few minutes you will receive criticisms. Some will be honest, some will be lies. Some will be with the intent of helping you grow and claim a spot within the community, while others will be hurtful with the intent that you will leave.
I say to you: look, read, and think for yourselves. Learn to see through the BS and find the comments and conversations that matter. Take the advice from some of the people that have been here the longest and allow them to help you grow.
And most importantly, find the reason that you are here, nevermind what the reason was that brought you here.