Four years ago I wrote this:
"I have entered blogland with fear and trembling. Feisty is sitting on my lap and Care Bear is here too. I don't have time to think or write, but just wanted you all to know that Kristen has launched me. There have been so many great messages in the last two days that I feel I need to do some explanations. I will do that as time goes on. I just wanted you to know I'm here. Just Call Me Grandma Dawn!"
I had many family members who were quite surprised that I jumped in, because I had resisted for a long time. Three months later, I became a full-fledged member. . .
. . . and wrote this:
I am waiting for someone to begin a support group - Bloggers Anonymous. At that time, all of us who have known each other anonymously can meet face to face! Face it - we have an addiction. I wonder how soon it will become a part of the DSM-IV (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition). I can see it now: Blogmania, a recently diagnosed mental disorder with the following symptoms:
- Computer is on 24/7
- You are running to the computer every few minutes
- Laundry is piling up
- Meals have become the frozen variety
- Conversation with mate revolves around what you read in cyberspace
- Blogger problems become bigger than life
- Your mind is always thinking of what to write next
- Depression occurs if there are fewer than 7 comments on any given day
- You are sleep deprived from staying up reading hundreds of messages
Of course, this is an exaggeration, and meant to be a bit tongue in cheek. Seriously, it does become addictive. But there are so many good things about this new mania:
- I have met so many wonderful people from so many places - Canada, Chili, Australia, every state I've lived in.
- I have found so many kindred spirits who know my Jesus.
- I have seen miracles through the prayers of these new friends.
- I have laughed and cried, both with tears running down my cheeks.
- I have discovered people who have such a gift of words.
- I have found astounding spiritual truths from new acquaintances.
- I have been challenged to be a better Christian.
- I have become better acquainted with family members who are bloggers also.
- I now look at everything that happens as a potential post. It has opened my eyes to a whole new way of looking at things.
- My memory has been jogged and I realize what a wonderful life I have had.
- I was reduced to happy tears when so many people welcomed our prodigal home. God is so good!
- So many of us will someday meet, if not in this life at least in the next.
It has been quite a ride. I have to say I've enjoyed it very much. It is hard to imagine, before you jump into blogland, how close you can become to "cyber friends." I have been immensely privileged to meet 10 of my blogging buddies IRL (in real life, in case you don't know the the terminology). What fun!
There have been many changes over the last four years. Quite a few of my original followers are no longer blogging. Several are now Facebook friends, but I do miss their posts very much.
Many of us have stuck with it, but have cut down considerably on the number of posts per week. I am in awe of those who manage to write something every single day.
During my first couple of years of blogging, there were lots of activities going on - Christmas open houses, neighborhood visits, memes, contests, awards. Maybe these things still happen, but not in my circle so much any more. It was fun, but time consuming.
Blogging buddies have come and gone. I lost quite a few when I had to go private for over a year.
One former blogger asked on Facebook the other day if it was wrong to have more contact with our cyberfriends than our "real life" friends. If so, then I must admit my guilt. I can hardly believe how close I feel to so many of you as we share our joys, our trials, our prayer requests, our trivia, our families, our homes, our yards, our dreams with each other.
You have become prayer partners during many family situations - if it weren't for many of you, our little miracle twins may not have been born in perfect health. You have been such a support of Kevin as he has gone through his recovery process. You have shared with Sema as her family in Africa were in serious financial crisis. You have watched the 4 girlies growing up.
No big giveaway today - sorry! Just thanks to you all for your friendship. Some of you have been with me since Day One, when Diane hosted a Welcome Home Prodigal party for Kev. Many of you I have found along the way, and I wish I remembered where and how! I'm glad some of us continue to write. I love checking in on you every day or so. You are definitely a big part of my life.