This March will mark the third year anniversary of Expat and the City blog. It seems like yesterday that I started writing my first post and I can't for the life of me remember how I went from two readers to over 60K hits per month. There used to be this sweet Kuwaiti man who I affectionately called M&A for Married and Anonymous. He barely left his house but loved to read Kuwait blogs. I think I was one of the only blogs that he would comment on. Anyway, he was a nice man with a warped sense of humor. He used to really make me laugh. I sometimes wonder if he still reads this blog.
M&A: Are you still here after all of these years?
The whole idea of starting this blog was to write about my experiences in Kuwait. More of an online journal and nothing to do with becoming a famous Kuwait blogger, invitations to the hottest events or making money through advertising. Not that there is anything wrong with that but I wanted to stay anonymous mainly because of my job in Kuwait.
Right away I discovered so many Kuwait blogs that I enjoyed reading and after some time I became friends with many of the Kuwaiti bloggers. This by far has been the most outstanding part of my blogging experience. Many of the local blogs linked my blog to their blog and I started gaining followers and popularity. Before I knew it there were invitations, gifts, advertising inquiries, events and even personal invitations to bloggers homes. It was all very unexpected and flattering. There are companies that send out flyer's and requests for advertising to every blog and then there are the ones that can pick and choose certain blogs that they feel are the most popular or influential. For some reason Kuwaiti blogs seem to be a popular means of free advertisement compared to blogs in other countries.
As the number of blog readers grew the harder it was to stay anonymous. I'm not so concerned with friends or co-workers as I am with upper management and now my fiance's family finding out about the blog. The more popular the blog grew the more I couldn't write the entire story and I'd have to change things up a bit so I could protect my identity.
With the long hours I work here in Kuwait I've asked several friends over the years to join me so that the blog would stay fresh and have frequent new posts. Friends have come and gone on the blog and in Kuwait. It's hard to find interesting people you trust that have the time and passion to commit to blogging. It takes a lot of dedication and hard work to keep a blog going. A big thanks to all of you who help me. :*
Then came along an unexpected romance with an extremely private person you all know as Hayati. The more involved we became the more I feared he would find out about my secret hobby. There is so many interesting things about my life in Kuwait to write about but I am too scared of getting caught by him or upper management so I usually don't post about them. Over time the need to stay anonymous has all but ruined the blogging experience for me. I feel that if this blog had not been so well known that I would have been able to share more of what it's truly like to live here.
At the risk of becoming another Arab Times / Events blog without a personal touch I think it's best to shut this thing down either right before or after I get married this summer. I'm not really even sure how many people truly read this blog anymore because they genuinely like it. There seems to be a lot of jealous or hateful comments that make me laugh but also make me wonder what's the point of sharing my experiences on a blog. So what if I moved to Kuwait to work here and gain experience and then just happened to get engaged to a very wonderful Kuwaiti guy. Kuwait is full of millionaires so it's not a big deal that I'm about to marry one. I enjoy sharing some of the romantic things he does for me on the blog but believe me they are only the half of it. Thankfully I don't have to be with a man for his money as I choose to be with him because he is my soul mate.
I started this blog to write about my experiences living in Kuwait so I am damn well going to write about them (as much as I safely can). It's not my fault that nobody has ever treated you (the hater's) like a princess but it doesn't mean it doesn't exist or that it could never happen to you. Jealousy isn't flattering on anyone. Be happy for others and you'll be blessed to.
I really feel truly happy and in love. He's the man of my dreams and he makes me want to be a better woman. I'm so thankful for having such an amazing guy in my life who is also my best friend. When he recently went out of town I thought I'd literally die from missing him so much. He must have spent hundreds of Euros on calling cards because we talked for hours every day he was away.
Trying to blog about your life here but having to change a few important details about your experiences because of the need to stay anonymous and the censorship in Kuwait takes its toll after time. It's no longer as enjoyable and you don't feel free to write as you please. I never knew why some popular bloggers just stopped blogging but now I think I get it.
Well, it's late and I'm going to end this now. Not sure that I even made sense but I just want to say that I've enjoyed blogging very much but I also look forward to starting the next chapter of my life. A new chapter that doesn't involve strangers knowing about 75% of your personal business. I'm starting to feel it's time to say goodbye to the blog, Twitter and Instagram. Sometimes I think it would be fun to start a joint blog with my experiences as an American newlywed married to a Kuwaiti man. But I know that is never going to happen because if I told him he would never approve. At least he has changed and grown considerably since I first wrote, "His Rules". He used to lust me and now I know he truly loves me as I do him.
For B and the girls and all my Kuwait blogger friends I love y'all! Thanks to the readers who actually support me and wish me well. Your comments and encouragement are what keep me going. And for the haters: thanks for the laughs. <3
* I'm not going to stop blogging now. I just feel that it might be best for me to stop right before or after I get married.