Weatherford Democrat

November 26, 2012

COLUMN: The time is nigh to say goodbye

Margarita Venegas
CNHI

— Well, Weatherford, it’s been interesting.

In the two-and-a-half years that I’ve been editor at the Weatherford Democrat, that’s really the word that best sums up my experiences.

There have been very good times — times that didn’t always include laughter. One of my most memorable interviews was sitting in the dining room of a mother who had recently lost her son. Recalling her loss, she cried. I cried. And, when I left, I felt a closeness that comes when someone is kind enough to not only let you into their home, but let you see the emotions in their heart.

There have been some bad times. I got a call one afternoon from a person with good intentions. He wanted to let me know that a “hate blog” — an online chat board — had been started about me. I’m not sure what he expected me to do. It irritated me — I’m human. When someone talks bad about me, it’s upsetting. But, ultimately, I wouldn’t have taken any action. I believe people have the right to free speech and being in the public eye, I’m as much of a target as anyone else.

As you have probably guessed, however, no amount of bad has been able to chase me away and no amount of good can make me stay.

Soon, I’ll be leaving Weatherford on my own terms — and love me or hate me, you’ll still be in good hands.

I’m getting married in December and my fiance and I have decided to live in Denton, which is far too far away for me to continue the job of being a community editor.

The staff here at the Democrat will continue to persevere and in the coming days, you’ll find out all about the new editor that we’ve chosen to replace me.

Rest assured, the needs of readers in Parker County will continue to be a top priority for the Weatherford Democrat.

When I first moved to town in May 2010, I wanted to get to know everyone and I made sure that everyone knew I have an open-door policy. While that made for some interruptions during my regular work day, it enabled me to be able to meet as many people in the community as possible. I wouldn’t trade those missed minutes at my computer for anything.

Although I’ve heard, at times, that I must align myself with the most “powerful” people in Weatherford, the fact is that the most influential people here have been the ones who rarely try to curry favor with the public.

The truth is no one is more powerful than you, our average, ordinary reader. Don’t let anyone ever make you think anything different. I listen to my readers and go to great lengths to ensure that we have a common understanding. Sometimes we do, sometimes we don’t. But, I always see my most important job as one that involves the “average Joe” or “average Jane.”

So many of you have let me into your homes and businesses to be interviewed for stories or just to chat. As I move on to the next chapter of my life, I will miss that most of all.

But, I am thankful, Weatherford, that I got to meet you and be here with you. It’s been interesting, and it’s also helped me grow.