Lisa Jo Baker has started 5 Minute Fridays, where friends each write for 5 minutes on the same word. No editing. No pressure. Just writing. It sounded fun, so I’m going to try it, along with my Foto Friday post. Thankfully, I’m a pretty fast typer. 🙂
The word: Connect
When I first think of Connect, I think of connecting to the internet. I’m reminded of when I had to click a little telephone icon on my dad’s computer in our stuffy office and wait as I heard the dial tone of the modem. What a great sound when the computer was finally online! AOL was just a baby, and I loved connecting via chat with all these “aged” college kids I was meeting in this new connected world. The Gaming Zone allowed me to play Spades with people in France. And that first month, I raked up a $90 phone bill!
Connecting online was still innocent and fun. My parents didn’t worry about who I was chatting with and cyber stalkers. The idea didn’t even cross our minds. When someone posted on that black screen, “M/18/Indiana” that meant he really was an 18 year old guy from Indiana. Who would lie on the internet?
Oh, how times then quickly changed.
As a mom, I joined a message board called “Moms Online” that connected women who were all due with a baby the same month. My daughter is now 11, and though the group of women has moved through various online message board websites, we’ve all settled into Facebook. It’s not as easy to connect as a group there, but I still feel warm inside when I think of my friend Dena’s house projects or my friend Maureen’s soccer teams that she coaches.
Even that board, however, was filled with dishonesty. A woman named Navy was with us for a few years, and then we found out that she was actually a college girl writing a paper! My, how we all felt so betrayed! How dare she lie to us?
So I suppose the internet allows us to have a shield around us, thinking no one will find out.
How else do we use the internet to connect? Email is by far a technology that seems so ingrained into our lifestyle that it’s hard to imagine a civilization without it. Facebook. Twitter. Blogging. Goodreads.
I’m on all of them.
And how connected do I feel?
Well, I see it more as a hobby. Though I’m connected to people who I ordinarily wouldn’t be, like the women on my May Baby Board, for the most part, it’s a nice way to share photos and funny moments with people you might not ordinarily talk to.
But if I’m your friend. If I know you in person. If we share life together. Then I want to share life together. I know it’s hard with our kids and home schooling and responsibilities and jobs and ministry. I know it’s not always convenient. I know it’s not easy. But a personal email means more than a generic facebook post. A phone call does more than a text. And a cup of coffee is like magic.