Dec. 7 – Community
Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010? What community would you like to join, create or more deeply connect with in 2011?
This is the first Reverb10 prompt I haven't actually written the night it's released, but the fabulous thing is that's because I was out reconnecting with one of my “communitites” A group of girlfriends and I, who go back 10 or more years, got together for dinner and drinks last night, for the first time, all of us together, since 2001. Some of us are married, some of us have babies, we drink a lot fewer long islands than we did back then, but I feel completely energized after spending time with this amazing group of women, and I'm thankful to have them in my life.
Moving on to the prompt…
Discovering community… I've been online, in one way or another, since about 1990, when I was a sysop for an old-school BBS. My dad installed an ISDN line when I was a sophomore or junior in high school, so I've had some sort of online community ever since… scrapbooking boards, mommy boards, premature baby boards, photography boards… there's always a common interest that pulls us in, but the friendships that keep us there.
But we're talking about 2010 here; not before then, and it's easy to say where I've found community online this year. It's Twitter. I originally joined to document my kidney transplant, and to give my husband a very simple way to keep friends near and far updated on the process… now that the transplant stuff is pretty much settled (Going back to work next week) it's evolved into something different, and for the past few days, it's Reverb time all the time! LOL
Reverb is the first project of this scope and type that I've participated in, so I'm totally the new kid on the block, but I was in awe of the massive community that sprung up, seemingly overnight. Unfortunately, at this point, I still very much like an outsider, even at the Reverb party. I don't feel like my writing is even *close* to the quality of so many of the blogs I read… I'm not making statements that people will carry with them forever, I don't have a bunch of blogger friends that I knew going into this; I blog to keep my in-laws up-to-date on Max; this writing, and this *much* writing is a real departure for me, so I don't really have an automatic audience of readers. I understand this, and know it takes time to get *in* to a community, even one that's as newly established as this, but I'm not giving up!
Communities I'd like to join, create or more deeply connect with? All of them. I'd love to “meet” more people on Twitter, I'd love to develop some real friendships on my local mom's board. I think I want to start going to church again. Jamie and I met at church, in high school, and I really want Max to grow up in a church. It's hard now, with Sundays being our only day off as a family, so it's just not a priority these days. Family cuddle time in the morning and chores for the week are the order of the day around here these days. But someday, we'll find a church family.
Until that day, I'll make do with what I have.
I largely feel the same way about reverb. I knew going into it that my writing wasn't going to win any awards but I'm taking this as an opportunity to practise opening up and being honest. If any of it rings true with anybody and we end up sticking around and swapping stores after Dec 31 then I think that's great. If not, I'm still having a lot of fun and learning a lot. I know there are people here who make a living at this and they get 1000s of hits a month; I'm obviously not in it for the stats (gawd, I started at 0 so how could I be?!). I'm thrilled with some of the people I've "met" this way and some of the viewpoints I've absorbed over the past few days. I don't agree with some of what I've read but I love the passion with which they're spreading their message.
Katherine Maund says
It's ironic that you joined Twitter to document your kidney transplant. My next big blog series is promoting organ donating in Vermont. Would you be interested in writing a guest post about the importance of donating? I think it would be incredibly inspiring.
I love reading at the Reverb10 posts. This movement in itself has created a community that I'm thrilled to be a part of.
I feel exactly the same way about the Reverb10 community–being the new kid, feeling a little "left out". I think part of it is hype–while there are definitely amazing blogs I've read, I don't think all of the ones getting thousands of RTs are necessarily "better" than ones that aren't. I've stumbled across quite a few thought-provoking, moving posts that I found under the #reverb10 on twitter.
Also, I think it's amazing that you managed to get together with a group of friends that you've known for so long. That's amazing! I hope to have that at some point.
I wish you luck in finding a home church community too. When we were church shopping I wrote in journal:
Church Shopping = Exhausting.
And it is! But soworth it whenyou find it. In the mean time, soak up the girls nights and snuggle time…and new friendson Twitter. 🙂 #reverb10
I think most of us are the "new kids" at the #reverb10 party, and that in itself builds community! I'm loving reading so many diverse perspectives on the same prompt. It's incredible how widely our experiences vary, and yet you can find themes and commonalities.
My goal for next year is to take more of my fabulous Twitter relationships into real life, as some things can't be expressed in 140 character increments. I've done it with a few people and have reaped the rewards.
Love this post! Your writing is great-we shouldn't compare ourselves to each other, or everyone is going to end up miserable and I definitely don't think that's the point! : )
Belonging to a group of shared interests where the friendships take over as the binding agent is a wonderful thing.
This whole reverb10 thing has been good for many people, I expect.
"it's evolved into something different, and for the past few days, it's Reverb time all the time!" I know what you mean! This is my first time participating in something like this too. It's pretty darn awesome. Congrats on your recovery.
I think I am becoming addicted to your reverb 10 posts. I am also new at the whole thing and I still think you have a lot more readers than I do. I also get ya on the whole wrting experience as well, I feel like my writing is so much different from the posts I read of other bloggers.