I was sitting outside this morning, enjoying a bit of time before the heat and humidity forced me back inside. I had a cup of coffee and was chatting with K about our trip to Oregon this year, going over some of the little details of the trip out, discussing some of the things we will do while we’re there. During the discussion I started thinking about all of our people out there, which I often do. I wondered if we would get to see most of them, I hoped we would.
Thinking about the people you miss sometimes leads to thinking about the life you’ve had. Mine has been amazing so far. Amazing, mostly, because of the people who have been in my life, either for a short time or for most of it. It’s the people, you see, who make a life what it is. It’s the experiences you have with those people who make the memories you hold on to, that make this journey we are all on worth the ride.
In that short time sitting outside I ran the gamut of my life, thinking about antics on playgrounds, singing silly songs in high school hallways, riding around in my Plymouth Scamp, playing frisbee in dark parks, skipping class to go to the coast, bridesmaids dresses, card games, talks in coffee shops, bike rides, racquetball, drive-in movies, travel to far away places, crying together, music shared, and laughter. So much laughter. So many smiles. I have what seems like an endless litany of shared experiences.
My thoughts then turned to Facebook, which really isn’t that strange of a leap to make. I realized, during this short accounting of my life, that I am friends on Facebook with people from all phases of my life. I have managed to gather them there, these parts of my life, parts of myself. I can look at my friends list and see people I knew in grade school, people I spent time with in high school, people I met in college, and people from my work life afterward. And I realized something else… I love them all. I love them like I love those versions of myself. The versions of me I was when I knew them. I hold those parts of myself close, trying to remember who I’ve been, how far I’ve traveled in life, and who these wonderful people have become themselves. Who we are all becoming, every day as we move forward in life.
It’s a deep thought, not easily articulated. I guess I will say this. I love Facebook. Not for the games or the re-posting or the political stuff I seem to be inundated with every day, but for the connection. I love it for the window into people’s lives. For the thoughts and photos and snippets of things that are important to them. People I’ve loved, people I still love for who they were to me, who they are to me now. People who have made my life what it is, who have made me who I am. I’m grateful for this connection, for this window. I’m blessed to have been able to renew those ties to my former self, my younger self, and to stay connected to family and friends in far away places.
Before Facebook these parts of my life were like vapor. Diffused. Slightly transparent. Now, though still removed and in far off places, they are re-connected to me. And I am, miraculously, reconnected to myself, to my past, to this life I’ve lived and am living, and to the people that have made this life. I’m grateful for that.