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High Impact Mom

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Finding “True Belonging” in Digital Friendships

August 18, 2010 Amanda 17 Comments

@DanielleSmithTV @KatjaPresnal and myself at BWE 2009

This morning in the quiet after Jon had gone to work and before I woke the small people I read a devotional {as I do most mornings} to get my mind in the “right place” for the day.  But the basis of this devotional was how online or digital relationships don’t give people a sense or a reality of “true belonging” and that got me thinking, because that is just not fact for me.  Now, don’t get me wrong…I get that the moral of this devotional was that we {humans…duh} find “true belonging” in and from God alone, but the author spent much of her time describing how empty digital relationships left you. Let me tell you a little about the ladies who have wound themselves around my h @jylmomIF @savorthethyme @MomSpark and me (@HighImpactMom) @ TAM 2009 eart and the “true belonging” I found in them.

I live in a fairly rural {ok, most definitely rural} area where my personality and “self” is often not the norm.  I’m often the youngest in the crowd at KG’s school…in short I often feel misplaced like I can’t find a place to belong.  To put it more plainly I’m ‘Rock-n-Roll’ and am surrounded by ‘Country’.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I don’t fit. However, through the relationships I have formed while blogging, on Twitter, on Facebook…whatever…I’ve found my “forever friends”.

@SLPowell, @ResourcefulMom, @Teachmama, and @KTnestingspot @ Disney's Social Media Mom Celebration 2010

Women who get it, who get me.  They’re in the same place I am and they know what it’s like to juggle home life, work {out of the house and in house}, kids, husbands {who are sometimes like kids}, blogging, social media participation, school participation and everything else that goes into our lives. They don’t judge…because they’ve been there or are there now. They’re women of all shapes and sizes, they come from different countries, and have different religious beliefs…we don’t all like the same music, live in the same area {or continent}, and some of us don’t have children, but we’ve carved out a place for ourselves online and in each other’s hearts.

I see some of these ladies once a year, some more, some less, some not at all…but this doesn’t make them any less dear to me.  You see, I have found “true belonging” with them. Would I love it if they were my physical neighbors? You betcha!! But just because the majority of our interaction takes place online doesn’t deteriorate the “true belonging” we find in each other.

/end rant

I’d love to know your experiences.

Have you found ‘forever friends’ online? Where do you find your true belonging?

About Amanda

Amanda has written 727 post in this blog.

Join me as I raise 2 small people in rural Kentucky, learn with me about becoming a “greener” family, laugh and cry about life’s journey, and maybe find some good deals and people who are doing it right along the way. This blog is dedicated to following our crazy beautiful lives through word, photo, and song. Send me an email: amanda(at)highimpactmom(dot)com

#blogging#digital#Facebook#friendship#online#Twitter

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Comments

  1. Andrea @ MommySnacks.net
    August 18, 2010 - 7:36 am

    Amanda, what a great post!! It’s all true. So very true.

    I do have those dear forever friends. I’m lucky though to have some of them so close. I know God had His hand in it the entire way.

    Most of my IRL friends don’t get it. They don’t see how we can get so close with our online friends – who are truly just friends after all.

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    Andrea: None of my IRL friends “get it”. They don’t get why blogging is such an integral part of my life or how I could have made these close relationships via social media. But as you said they “are truly just friends after all.” I’m blessed to have made so many amazing friends…IRL and digitally. Thanks for stopping by!
    ~Amanda

    [Reply]

  2. Jyl Johnson Pattee
    August 18, 2010 - 8:47 am

    I love this post, Amanda. And, I love looking at that pic of us and thinking about the fun we had at the Type A Mom conference last year.

    I always look at the digital world as an amazing filter that helps you find or form friendships with people you never would have had the blessing of meeting IRL, but feel immediately connected to once you do. It also speeds things up somehow, making me often feel like I’ve had some of these friendships since Jr. High, crazy as that seems.

    I count my relationships from this space as some of my nearest and dearest of all my friendships and am so grateful for them!

    Thanks for a lovely post!

    xoxoxo

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    OH Jyl! I couldn’t agree more! Many of these woman have become sisters of my heart, gaining much the same adoration as my blood sisters. I know just what you mean about feeling like you’ve know them forever too. There are women here in this digital place I feel like I have known since early childhood and who’s lives are just as dear to me. I am grateful for these friends and count myself blessed for knowing them.

    Thanks for stopping by!
    PS. I love that pic of us too! It was a very good time last year and I hope to see you back there this year!
    ~Amanda

    [Reply]

  3. Aparna Vashisht
    August 18, 2010 - 11:09 am

    Hugs. :)

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    Hugs right back my dear! I hope you’re feeling well!
    ~Amanda

    [Reply]

  4. Katja Presnal
    August 18, 2010 - 6:29 pm

    I love you and this post! And it holds the truth for me too. I don’t “fit” any better in my neighborhood, and in fact I am tired of even trying to explain to people what I do. I love how you describe what we have as “true belonging”, because that’s exactly what it is. Just feelin’ good, that I have found my tribe, my kind of people. Who just get it, even though I don’t even have to explain it too much. Hope to see you soon.

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    OH Katja,
    I hope to see you soon too!! We had so much fun at BWE last year! I have quit explaining what I “do” now too, I’m tired of the weird looks and the snide comments. I’m happy with who I am, what I do, and where I’m going. I’m thankful for friends like you who ‘get’ it.
    =)
    ~Amanda

    [Reply]

  5. CeciliaKy
    August 18, 2010 - 8:50 pm

    In January 2001, I found myself unexpectedly pregnant with baby #3. For the first time, I had access to an online community of other expectant moms, all due in September 2001. It was there that I found my sassy sisters. For 8 years, we’ve been through a LOT together. In addition to celebrating the babies that brought us together (only one actually born in September, LOL), we’ve celebrated 3 more babies, mourned the loss of two parents of ours, worried while spouses deployed overseasm sent older kids to college, and shared every milestone our “babies” have achieved.

    Like many groups of online friends, we’re scattered all over the country, which makes it difficult to see each other often .. but every day we talk. without fail. We don’t always gets along, but we are there for each other, without question.

    People used to look at me funny when I told them I had friends on the internet. Heck, they still do. But these people are my sanity. They are the sisters I’ve never had but always wanted. They get it. And I am much better for having them in my life.

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    *Cold Chills*
    Beautiful story. These digital relationships have the power to stick and stay in our hearts forever.

    I know just what you mean by their being sisters. I am blessed with 2 birth sisters and many sisters of the heart. Thank goodness for them and their life-saving, sanity-saving, soul-speaking selves.

    Thank you so much for sharing your experience!
    ~Amanda

    [Reply]

  6. CeciliaKy
    August 18, 2010 - 8:50 pm

    and PS. I can’t do math. It’s 9 years. LOL.

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    Bahahah! =) You are forgiven. With kids it’s hard to keep count..I call it “mom brain”.

    [Reply]

  7. Rock and Roll Mama
    August 18, 2010 - 9:01 pm

    Amanda. :) This is just one more reason you’re a sister in my heart. When I think of the ways my life has changed in positive ways due to my digital engagement, it baffles me to think there was a time I lacked this outlet.

    But now that I have it…and the friends I love so much…I can’t imagine how one dimensional the world would seem. Thank you for this reminder. :) xoxo, L

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    Oh yes, Lindsay. You are a sister of my hear too. Life would be so much more boring if we weren’t able to communicate, share our problems, dreams, loves, joys, and music online. It’s hard for me to remember a time when I wasn’t connected {oh ugh…that totally made me think of a Barbie song my girls are killing me with} and I don’t want to go back there. I love living in this digital world with all of you amazing women!
    <3 Amanda

    [Reply]

  8. CeciliaKy
    August 18, 2010 - 9:12 pm

    in addition to being the reason for my fabulous friends … the 3rd child has sucked the last of the good brain cells out of my head. LOL

    [Reply]

    Amanda
    Twitter: highimpactmom
    Reply:

    I am *liking* this comment :)

    [Reply]

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