Monday, December 13, 2010

On Bloggy Friends

I was going to write about something else today, but I can't. I cannot stop thinking about Dana and her family. Her 22 month old son died suddenly yesterday, and so I've been half in tears all day, full of sorrow for a family I've never met in person but feel as if I know.

Dana's blog was one of the first homeschooling blogs I found and subscribed to. I've read her for years now. Though we don't see eye-to-eye on everything, we have much in common beyond just "homeschooling mommy."

I remember when she announced that she was pregnant with her little boy--it was right around the time Sean was born. I remember when she announced his birth. I laughed the other week over her characterization of her "Oatmeal Pollock" and several of his sisters and brothers, feeling camaraderie with her plight, and trying to imagine my own life with double the kids.

The blogging world is an interesting world. I know so many more people today than I did five years ago. I have my Objectivist bloggy friends and my homeschooling bloggy friends and my food allergy bloggy friends and my Rage Against the American Community Survey bloggy friends. Because I have opened up my life a little bit to strangers through the phenomenon (okay, alright, obsession) known as blogging, my life is just that much richer.

And people know me, because I am telling all of this stuff about myself for them to read. And I get to know other people who tell stuff about themselves, too. Yet it's a different kind of knowing--we're not-quite strangers who know all of these personal things about each other. We are internet friends and acquaintances, and though most of us have yet to meet in person, we are connected and sometimes involved in each other's lives. We cheer each other's successes, fret when their kids are sick or have a food allergy reaction, sympathize when they struggle with helping a child work through an academic issue. And we share their sorrows, too.

As I've been trying to wrap my head around Dana's unimaginable pain, I've been cognizant of another feeling--deep appreciation for all of the people who write blogs I enjoy and the people who come to visit me here.

So that's all for now. Gonna go spend some time with my kids today. RIP, Mattias.


Lady Baker said...

I love our blog community too and feel so close to those fellow moms sharing their joys and challenges with Objectivism influenced parenting. Yesterday, I kept finding myself getting teary because your friend had such a heartbreaking loss. I'm deeply appreciative of this warm, blog community too.
Get well soon,

Dana said...

Thanks, Jenn. It is a weird sort of community. I used to call the people I talk to online my "imaginary friends" when I'd suddenly find an online story making its way into my conversation with people I know "IRL."

But it is a real community, as well. Maybe not quite like our neighbors and acquaintances and friends who have surrounded us here, but the thoughts and generosity of "blog friends" and even total strangers is not in the least imaginary.