Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Connection and the Internet

I know that a lot of people bemoan the advent of social media, and blame it for all kinds of disconnectedness.

I see the memes going around on Facebook.

I don't believe them.

Oh, I do think that people are less connected, in some form or another.  I just don't blame it on social media or cell phones or the internet.

Admittedly, my perspective is a bit different than most.  I thoroughly enjoy my social media accounts.  I laugh along with all of the cat memes and the dog-shaming pictures.  The cute animal videos get me every time.  Don't get me started on the military reunion videos.  There WILL be tears.

I DID have a MySpace page, back-in-the-day.  
I used to instant message with my grandmother on AOL.  

Now, I have a few different accounts, and love them all for various reasons...but sometimes I feel overwhelmed, also for a variety of reasons.  

As a military spouse, and a mom with children in other places, I use my social media accounts to keep in touch with people.  

I have friends all around the world, and I can keep in touch with them, and know very quickly that prayer is needed, and how to pray intelligently.  

I use my accounts to network.  
For trying to find a job. 
For help with recipes.
For help with children. 
For help with cars, and moving, and pets, and finding a new hairdresser in a new town.  

But more than all of that....

Social media helps me feel connected.  
I grew up feeling disconnected from EVERYONE.  
Some days, I still do.  

Through the use of social media, I can more easily maintain connections with important friends from old duty stations.  

I can keep up with what is going on with my sister in Savannah, my cousins near Atlanta and Asheville, my brothers in South Carolina, my aunt and uncle in California, and my friends in churches we have attended in South Carolina, Texas, Montana, Virginia, Massachusetts, and other places that they have spread out to.  

I can rejoice with friends from college when they welcome a spouse, a child, or a grandchild.

I can weep with the friends who are weeping over a loss...of a child, a spouse, a parent, a pet, or a job.  

I have been able to find friends who I have not been able to be in contact with in years.  

So, please remember that while YOU may be frustrated with the drama you see on your social media, others may welcome it, and may be using that exact drama as a tool to help them pray, and to connect with others.  

 PS.  I still don't want to see your political posts, no matter how much I want to stay connected with you.  I just don't *do* politics.  

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