28

On the correlation between
gaining weight and losing value:
like knowing to throw salt behind your back for good luck,
throw that notion away with the same reverence of belief
that no one really believes that either.

There is no glory in eagerness to be extra small
there is no shame in size medium.
Your wardrobe should not be a museum
of all the smaller versions of you
that you can’t wear anymore.

This toxic idealism;
a carrot, dangling;
if I continue to remind these clothes hangers of the old me,
maybe I’ll fit back in, someday.

Like a butterfly, yearning
to crawl back into cocoon
you are neglecting progress.
You have shown yourself compassion
by not ascribing your worth to your weight.

Your beautiful three-pound brain
is far from average
and if it expands with knowledge,
empathy, humanity and dignity,
and if others weigh in on your gain
and if you are alive and healthy,
quite frankly,
tell them to go fuck themselves.

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2000 Followers!

Are you guys for real??

When I began this blog on October 1, 2017, I was in search of a place to land. Somewhere to put my dozens of dusty journals filled with poetry, songs, short stories and anecdotes where they could catch a bit of sun and bloom. And my goodness, did they ever.

I had no idea I would find friendship in so many of you. I am unbelievably grateful for the endless support you have shown me. In reblogs, likes, comments, even in your help in getting me 4 100 votes in my scholarship essay! This community really is a village, and I am in love with it all.

I always get inquiries from readers about blogging help and I only thought it fitting to share those tips with you all today!

Please note that I put a lot of effort into this blog because I also use this as a portfolio for my professional life as a PR student. Showing that I can generate that traffic is integral to my work as a future communicator in my field. You and I probably have different goals—please don’t think that my journey has been grown naturally or of luck. I have read some incredible work from WordPress writers, and someone who is using their platform as a personal diary and someone like me who uses it as a portfolio piece will not have similar results. Do what works for you!

Without further ado, here are my top three tips to boost blog traffic:

1: When someone leaves you a comment, comment on their blog!
I can’t stress this one enough! If someone gives you that courtesy, return it. This is a community of writers who love comments and feedback from other writers. We are all here to learn from each other. 

2: Utilize your other platforms!
And I don’t just mean put the link in a new tweet—add a little blurb about what it’s about, or a great quote from it you love. Engage in the community by following hashtags! On Instagram for example, if you view the #poetry hashtag and follow/like some posts there, you’ll build a new connection on a platform that will link back on WordPress—and maybe get you some Insta-friends on the way!

3: If someone likes your post, like three of their posts.
This one is a bit aggressive, but stay with me here. Everything about traffic generation is giving courtesy back when it has been afforded to you. Maybe I’m just Type A, but I always remember those users who leave comments and likes on my page. When their blog comes up on my feed, I won’t hesitate to leave a few comments on their blog as an appreciation of their ongoing friendship with me.

I want to STRESS the idea that this blog takes time and effort. I spend at least two hours everyday—and I mean everyday—going through new posts, leaving likes and comments, optimizing my social media outlets and always writing new content in order to get those numbers up. On Sunday for my big posts, I am easily mulling over my page for five cumulative hours. There is A LOT of work behind the scenes; don’t be discouraged if we are at different points in our blogs!

Elleguyence is the first place I ever spoke publicly about my struggle with bulimia in my post, 18. I cried the night before, terrified that I would be judged or misunderstood for attention-seeking. I had a lump in my throat as I clicked “Publish”, and I cried again as my inbox FILLED with women telling me their stories, too. It was a rush of relief, knowing we weren’t alone (and we never were).

When we were born, we were put on this planet with other people. We are nothing without the support of each other, and this community has shown that to me tenfold. Please, don’t hesitate to ask me questions about this blog, whether it’s diagnostics, widgets, content creation and more, comment below!

Thank you all again for your support. This little pocket of the internet has really become a facet in my life.

Love,

ELLE

27

My whole life I’ve heard:
“travel the world
fill the passport pages
and at the last sheet,
you find yourself.”

How clean, picturesque a concept
you forget about the way there.
I’ve left my home behind in search of the greater me
and I’ve also not arrived at the destination.
The fear of adventure lies
in the in-between of on-the-way

The eerie silence of a hostel
filled with travelling strangers
staring at the ceiling, willing it to open up
and for the stars to align your way.

That deep sense of regret,
of thinking you’ve made
the world’s worst choice by leaving home
and the blessings of everyone you’ve loved
your comfy nook of this universe
their good will an ocean away.

The flight isn’t the scariest part
but the landing.
Buying a ticket to destination is easy
finding somewhere to
set your heavy luggage down
somewhere soft,
and making it a home is the battlefield.

 

Thank you all so much for your support in voting for my scholarship essay! We reached 4100 votes by closing day, and I couldn’t have done it without everyone in this community. The recipients are announced on April 30, but I’ve already won, knowing how supportive my followers have been to me in this academic endeavour.

I can’t thank you all enough for your sweet kindness towards me. I appreciate you all endlessly. Happy Sunday.

Love,

Elle

26

Being me is not enough
for someone like you.
If all my affection piled up like
an avoided accordion file,
you’d say I was too much
with no folder big enough
to carry the burden of
such an expansive heart.

I called you once, in a huff
ready to say everything I had pent up–
that you were selfish and cruel,
how dare you try to shove my wild love aside
because it was more than what you wanted.

If my worst trait was being “too much,”
then maybe it was your worst trait, too
that you couldn’t carry it.

I’ve read universes of books to know
someone telling you they didn’t hurt you
has no business in telling you so.

I’d yell and yell and yell
and you’d say “are you done?”
like waiting for the beep
you’d leave your message
while I sat on the line, listening
to everything you weren’t willing to hear
but it’s different, coming from you

All you’d say was “my, me, I,”
and all I’d hear was the dial tone.

25

Like a button labelled “do not press”
you’ve never listened to your mother’s instructions.
“Be nice to girls,”
“Don’t touch someone else’s things,”
barging through my door, you
scolded my table manners

“You’re so irresistible, how
could I have stayed away from you?”
Like misinformed flattery,
like a free sample,
you just had to try.

Like your fear of missing out was greater than
any pain I’d feel after you realized I wasn’t your cup of tea
spat out, my fault I was too hot
on the tip of your tongue.

My mistake
for being too hard to swallow,
if only I was more complacent
I could’ve been like honey,
smooth silk down your esophagus.

Too bad my father raised me to drink my tea black
so I’d learn what quality tasted like in my own mouth.
And while you continue to disobey your mother’s axioms,
I wonder when you’ll realize she’s
the only woman who will ever love you.

24

All my love had always been held
in callused touch.
I was used to unreturned calls;
unopened text messages;
laughing at jokes that weren’t funny;
pretending not to be hurt when
he said he wanted casual,
as if me taking us seriously
was a silly miscalculation.

I’d stay awake nights
the bags under my eyes
heavy with tears
like lost luggage,
a carousel spinning away.

Every pair of hands upset me to the point I thought
I had made a grand mistake,
thinking there was not a single soft pair of hands
in the world meant for me.

I had been so used to being shut out
that your warmth and tenderness terrified me.

But you didn’t leave–you said,
“Where else would I rather be,
than here, with you,
as you have so graciously made room for me?”

23

It’s easy to romanticize the past,
that we once had it so easy
because damn,
it sure hurt a hell of a lot
at the time.

At the core of me is a
jaw breaker centre
filled with ghosts of all the people I could’ve been
all the tears I shed, in defence
and how they turned me to cement

All I wanted to say, realized
only after I’ve walked away.
Like trying to subdue a snowstorm,
I should have been Miss Behaviour
and turned back around.

I always thought we experienced pain now
because our future selves deserve more;
they’re worth more than this ache
and frankly,
they have more important things to tend to
than themselves.

We hurt now because pain hurts less (later on)
when we’ve already
quietly forgotten what we cried about.

But as it turns out,
it has been quite the effort
to keep afloat.
The promise of “later”,
a doll, dulled
waiting in the cold so long,
waiting for the water to run warm
that once I dipped my toes in,
the drastic change burned me, even so.