Sunday, April 13, 2014

Friendships through Blogging

A while back, a friend asked me if I had gotten to meet any interesting people through my blog. I had to think for a moment because although I read a lot of other people's blogs and feel like I "know" them, I don't think my blog reaches any further than the people already in my circle of friends. If you take a look to your left, you'll notice that I have been sitting at 30 lovely followers for about a year now.

I have really enjoyed blogging and at one point had put a lot of effort into learning about expanding, even making money. But the type of blogging I do is more or less journaling my life, which is not exactly demanding a high readership! I'm okay with that.

What I wanted to write about today, is that although I might not be able to say that I've met new people through my blog or being a part of the blogging community, I have developed a friendship of sorts with several people from my past.

There are three women that I knew back in college, none of them very well, but we knew each other none the less and may have even called each other "friends" at the time. After college, we lost touch. We remained "friends" on Facebook but nothing more than that. Then we each started blogging. I'd follow them and in turn they would end up following me. A comment here or there to encourage one another or a quick Facebook message to ask questions/share more privately has led me to feel that a bond of friendship is forming.

Because the format of blogging isn't limited to a number of characters or quick status updates, it allows for a deeper level of communication. It may be one sided until the reader engages, but there are opportunities for transparent and real, vulnerable thoughts to be shared.

I followed Sarah and Leah because they were living the life I wanted. You know the saying "the grass is always greener." Well, to me, they had the greener grass. Their families were well under way. Babies and more babies! I appreciated their "mom" blogs because they were real. I couldn't get enough. But I found myself being hit with how difficult their reality was. Being a mom is rarely, if ever, easy. Their openness kept me in reality. I also loved reading Leah's ideas in keeping her children active and entertained. So many of her ideas went in my "I need to remember this for my future" folder.

When I was looking for answers to my cloth diapering questions, both of these mamas gave me great advice. I was so thankful they were a part of my circle of friends and had the experience to share!

Tracy blogged off and on about a few different things. I first started following her when she began running. I was intrigued because I NEVER run. Then came her son and her Shaklee business and now she's blogging and video blogging (and running) like crazy. And she's hilarious.

I was reflecting back to my time in college and how Tracy and I met. We had several classes together as we had the same major, but it wasn't until we were processing our photos in the dark room together during photography class that I realized I wanted to get to know her. Our assignment had been to take photos that expressed our identity. I had tried so hard to create an image with my favorite things but couldn't get it to look the way I wanted. Tracy had done something similar with her name and her's turned out great. I watched the image appear in the processing tub and although I may have been a little jealous, I actually thought "I need to remember her name!"

A semester later we ended up working together with the Campus Activities Board as well as having classes together, but outside of those events, we never really hung out. After she graduated we lost touch.

Anyway, now she blogs and video blogs and I check in with what she's posting on an almost daily basis. She still has the same laugh she did nearly ten years ago and still has really great, creative ideas and makes life look like fun (all things I admired in college). We've had a few conversations about sleep training and cleaning supplies and I think now, through our blogs, if I were to drive thru her city, I'd give her a call and stop by. (I'd like to think that she'd answer!)

Of course, you don't have to follow people you already know, which really opens up endless possibilities for who you can meet and the things you can learn.

Who do you follow? Have you met anyone interesting through blogs or social media? 

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