I’ve been putting off writing this blog since I found out that Inside Detroit would be closing down and the D:hive would be opening in it’s place. I felt as though the world was opening a new door in the city of Detroit, but was closing a door to the way I had found to tell people about this great city that I lived in. What I didn’t know is that it was opening a door to a new life for me, one that still happily involved the D:hive and promoting Detroit.
For those of you who don’t know me. I was the Social Media and Marketing Director for Inside Detroit, and carried over the Social Media Director for the D:hive when it opened. I spent every day since May 27th of 2010 promoting great things to do in Detroit. I have met amazing people doing amazing things, and have had an outlet to share those things with the world, or at least our network in the world. I have mailed Detroit swag all over the country. I have helped some of Detroit’s finest home based businesses have a shelf to sell their products on.
A few months ago a friend said something to me that made me seriously question what I had been doing for the past two years, something about how they had worked longer and harder for the city than I had. And it really made me think. Had the work I been doing in Detroit just fluff? Just adding to the bull that floats around Detroit. It set me back, made me feel like I wasn’t doing enough. Wasn’t making a big enough impact. And then I graduated from the D:hive BUILD class and attended the D:hive Launch party. And that’s when I realized that I was a part of making Detroit great again. I had helped a nonprofit spread the word about why Detroit is great, told people of the rich history, the new development, the people making a difference, and I had also been one of those people.
I have met new and amazing friends on bar tours, from random trivia questions I’ve posted on Facebook and Twitter, met owners of bars, blogs, and buildings, met and engaged with the movers and shakers in this community. I put on the first USA Cycling sanctioned bicycle race in Downtown Detroit since the early 80’s. I was able to pull resources, ideas and help from some of Detroit’s finest. I’ve had new idea’s, failed at some of them and succeeded at others.
The moral of this story is, that after 3.5 months of working a new full time job in Troy, and working part time for D:hive, I’ve reached the conclusion that it is time for me to leave. The past 2 years have been amazing! If you can’t tell by all the things I’ve stated above, I’ll leave you with some more below. Having a hand in the D:hive when it started was an amazing experience. I’ve learned from some of the smartest people to ever grace the sidewalks in Detroit.
And now I will leave. I have made my mark on Detroit’s varying landscape. I have been a part of so many Detroit revitalization stories, and that wont change because I’m leaving, it will just make my commitment even stronger as I’ll have to find those leads on my own, they wont walk through my door anymore. Detroit has been the place where I have created and fulfilled so many of my dreams. And now I leave my place at the D:hive so others will be able to accomplish this. The D:hive is full of a powerhouse of people, that, I fully believe can and will do whatever comes to any of their minds. They have already done so much. As a member who came in once a week for meetings it was unreal for me to see the changes that occurred. Every week there were new faces with new ideas and new ways to achieve other people’s idea’s. I have earned my yellow and black scarf, I have earned the weird smell that is emitted from it. But most of all I have found a whole new set of people that earned my respect and gratitude. They are the movers and shakers of Detroit’s next chapter, one that I will have less of a hand in writing, but one that I will be eager to read and dabble in.
I will continue to write about the weird and magical things that happen in this crazy town. I will continue to pop up (insert shameless plug for the D:pop opening) at D:hive events. I can still be found on my bicycle, having fun, taking photos, and dreaming of the day when Detroit doesn’t have to fight for good news; for a day when you are overwhelmed by the good.
I want to thank all the people that I have met along the way. The people who were moving Detroit before I had moved to Michigan. I want to thank you for welcoming me into your town, sharing your events, partaking in ours, and making things happen every day, not because you want to, but because this is how you live, with amazing oozing out of your pores. That’s what Detroit does to you. It makes you the person that you should have been all along. It makes you better because it can. Because you should have been this amazing to begin with, you just didn’t have the space to do it in.
I wrote a love letter to Detroit once once when I thought I was moving, it was about all the things I had done here, about the person I had become. All of this is still true, all of this is still part of me. And now, even though I will still be in Detroit, I feel as though I’m leaving a part of me behind. A part of me that gets to share all of the best parts of Detroit. I know that someone at the D:hive will be doing this, but it’s a part of me that I’m still not sure if I’m comfortable leaving behind. So I’m sorry if we are Facebook friends and you get inundated with events from me personally, but it’s a part of me that I will need a while to ween off.
I want to thank all of the members of the D:hive. You have shown me a dream turned to reality that’s bigger than I could have ever imagined. Thanks to the founding members of Inside Detroit, without your faith in me I would not be the person that I am today. I wouldn’t be the do-er of things, I would be something else, that thought is scarier than most. You’ve given me a life that I am proud to have lived in a city that I learned how to defend, love out loud and promote. You gave me free range, and while that could have been a bad thing, it ended up giving us all what we needed, an outlet for the others to grow in.
Thanks to those who have read, commented, posted, toured, and followed. Thanks to those who made the switch from Inside Detroit to D:hive and those who liked either of them because you have the same passions. I urge you now to get involved. Become that person that you’ve always dreamed of being, or that person who you haven’t even begun to dream up yet.
Thanks to the people who have shared in this journey with me. Friends who received event invites 6 times in a row while I was practicing. My boyfriend for always putting up with me being late because I was busy doing “just one more thing”. The bar owners who kicked us out long after closing. The tour guides for putting up with my last minute calls. The tour groups for putting up with my lack of knowledge. The Detroiters who were never afraid to correct my mistypes (as you may be able to tell, I’m a stream of consciousness writer).
Dear D:hive, you have given me so much, I hope I have started you off on the right path. I have no doubt I have left you in remarkably capable hands. I can never thank you (and Inside Detroit) enough. You have made me the person that I am today, and the person that I can see in the future. Thank you for all you have done. I hope and wish you nothing but success and prosperity. Thank you, thank you.