Few weeks back, the husband was going through the items listed on my credit bill when a domain payment for my ex-blog domain: www.natashaa.net was itemized. He asked why this was the case since it had been almost a year since I migrated over to the current so.natty.sg domain. I told him that I must have forgotten to uncheck “auto-renewal” instead of letting it expire. And since it had been billed, I would just leave it till the next renewal date while I slowly backed up my photos. The husband was obviously not in a great mood (but who is, when it’s that time of the month right? I mean paying bills). He insisted that I wrote to get a refund pronto since I wasn’t using the domain and we were billed till Oct 2015.
For some reason, I didn’t follow up on the husband’s request as with his other requests such as “please start selling your 3 other breast pumps on carousell since you have 5?” It’s a bad trait I know, and I get nagged at all the time for it…sometimes to the extent of getting ignored out of frustration. But somehow the things he tells me to do just don’t stick as much as following up on a client’s request at work (I’m still figuring out a better way to remind myself). There always seems to be something else that needs to be done, kids that need to be taken care of and then there’s just wanting some me-time selfishly for sanity’s sake.
Anyhow the topic of cancelling domain charges came up some 2 weeks later during one of our petty conflicts where I was determined to prove to the husband of my new mindset change that I had been actively putting to practice. It was over an umbrella that we left at the beach because (as the husband put it) I had conveniently forgotten about it despite a reminder at the start and I was so insistent with wanting a nice family photo that the husband had to lean it against a tree.
Instead of getting personal back with a tit for tat, I decided to present 2 solutions. But while my mindset had shifted to a more objective one focusing on solving the problem, in this case trying to address the husband’s unhappiness, it was obvious my husband’s perception of me hadn’t. To prove a case in point about how I hadn’t really changed, he “tested” me by asking me on the status of the domain billing issue, conscious that there was a tendency I was going to fail it.
In my fury to prove him wrong, after answering that I had submitted a ticket to enquire but hadn’t checked on their response, I tried to actively solve the issue on the spot by writing to my domain & web host immediately about how my husband was giving me a difficult time for domain charges that I wasn’t actively using, and how I needed a refund pronto.
Ego got the better of me. I didn’t realize that when I asked for a refund and cancellation, it didn’t just involve the domain. It included web hosting as well– which meant the online storage of ALL OF MY BLOG CONTENT.
You know how some sites seem thoughtful by asking if you’re very sure about deleting your account or if you might have 2nd thoughts through subsequent emails? Well my web and domain host did ask the same too. But in my eagerness to make a point I said yes, I was sure I wanted to delete my domain charges and even proceed to complete the necessary forms needed before activating the “final call” to cancel the account.
Little did I anticipate web host’s efficiency. Had it not been for a conversation about blog layouts and the obsession with side bars, I wouldn’t have visited my blog this morning only to discover that EVERYTHING WAS GONE. No cache. No external backups. No word documents of anything. I also realized while I had went ahead to purchase a new domain name: so.natty.sg, I hadn’t purchase the web hosting! Apparently it wasn’t bundled together locally like it was with US companies. No wonder I had no backups on the new domain which I assumed would magically happen.
Everything happened so fast, it took a while to sink in. “Oh, I’ll just write to domain and web host to reinstate everything like it was before”. Wasn’t till I tried to log-in to my Cpanel and was greeted with a “domain is no longer valid” message after several failed log-in attempts did the possibility of losing everything sink in. Suddenly I could feel my head going woozy. The thought of losing all the posts that mattered so much to me – first thoughts of finally getting pregnant for the 1st time, how I felt seeing Liam for the first time, my first few weeks being a mum, Liam’s monthly milestones and photos, Liam’s 1st Birthday, being blessed to be pregnant again for the 2nd time with Ollie, Ollie’s birth story, Ollie’s one month old party, Ollie’s milestones – started to feel real and painful. I wanted those posts back so badly because I knew that I’d never be able to capture those raw and vulnerable feelings again even if I started afresh with another blog. I felt depressed. The blog was after all about my life and losing a chunk of it – especially the part that I’ve come to love the most in the last 3-4 years, made me feel like I’ve lost a part of me. Those memories. Those experiences described in vivid details. Those moments which could be re-lived through my storytelling.
Thanks to some suggestions to my SOS Facebook rant on this incident, I could finally log in to my Cpanel and saw that I could retrieve my latest back-up by paying. It’s been 2 days since I’ve lost the blog. Now that it’s back again, I am so not going to take my archives for granted again.
“You don’t know what you have until it’s gone” has never ring so true in a long time. In this case I took for granted that the blog will always live on the Internet and failed to realize the true value (accounts of those important events) until it wasn’t there anymore.
I know I don’t have to remind those who have a social account on the importance of backing up anything of importance by sharing my story, but I still want to put it blatantly across because I used to be one of those that take my blog for granted: ALWAYS BACK UP YOUR PHOTOS/CONTENT/FILES on a monthly basis if possible. Especially if your blog is your “back-up” of photos like me. :p