Stacy's Place on Earth
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Tuesday, July 24, 2007:
The value of online friendship...priceless
Well, as you can imagine, it's been an emotional last several days. Anytime a child is involved, most people can't help but feel strongly affected, even if they didn't know that child personally. I think that was extremely evident with Hannah. She made quite an impact on people, and I know she'll be with me for a long time to come.

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It reminded me of how many wonderful friendships I've made online since I first ventured on-line many, many years ago. I may have talked about this before (I don't know, but I have a rather bad memory remembering what I actually blog about), but it seems so strange in a way, though, doesn't it, to connect so strongly with people online? How can you be such good friends with someone (or several someones) you've never even met face to face? Well, first it starts with having something in common, that's how. Then you realize that you think the same way, or laugh at the same jokes, or like the same movies, or think Clive Owen is totally hot, or that Justin Timberlake is NOT. Just like any other friendships, you get to know someone and you sometimes end up liking them more and more as time goes by, and before you know it, you might be sending them personal emails, or calling each other on the phone, or rooming together at RWA, to give you some examples.
Most of my online friendships have developed because of my strong love of romances. In RL, absolutely none of my friends read them. Oh, they read Stephen King or Pearl S. Buck or Jodi Picoult or even J.K. Rowling, but not Suzanne Brockmann or Lisa Kleypas or Lori Foster, and certainly not Lacey Alexander! Yet I love these authors so passionately, and to find others who share that same feeling is incredible, and so much fun. There's nothing like talking about a subject you endlessly love with others who feel the exact same way.
Lucky for me, I've gotten the chance to meet some of these friends in person, and hang out with them for a weekend or longer. We've drank together, played practical jokes, attempted to line dance, hung out with favorite authors, or discussed our favorite Black Dagger Brother (Zsadist...or Vischous?). We reminisce, and share our secrets, and recently, we've grieved together. Online friendships are unique, but no less powerful because deep-down, we can relate to what other people are going through. I think about the day Princess Diana died, almost 10 years ago, and the effect it had on me. I remember waking up early to watch the memorial service, and I was crying right along with those on t.v. who were there, watching as her casket went past. In those moments, it was like the world connected.
So make fun, or scoff, or whatever. I'm here to say that on-line friendships mean something significant, whether you believe it or not. I may never personally meet some of the people I blog with, but to me, they are still friends of mine, some of whom I've known for years, and they still put up with my moods...with the added bonus that they can walk away from the computer at any time *g*
So I'm sending out some love to my online peeps: thanx for stopping by, for sometimes commenting, for rolling your eyes in silence, for listening to me drone on and on and still coming back for more. Thanx for listening to me gush about cover models, or martinis, or my "late to the Harry Potter" party monologues. I 'ppreciate the friendship...and for not wincing too much at my perm LOL.
You all rock!

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  1. Stacy, I have only just come to realize just how crucial these on-line friendships really are. The outpouring of love from everyone during this time has been incredible!!

    Thank you for being one of 'em, Stace! :o)

  2. Stacy~ I was saying the same thing to Meretta and Loreth. Online community and support has taken over a large chunk of emotional support systems, especially for those of us who move around constantly and often find ourselves far away from our other, physical friends.

    Rachel's loss reinforced every good thing about blogs for me. Of course, I'd give it all up if I could turn back time and... well you know.

  3. This week has really been a tough and painful one. You're right, Hannah's loss is horrifying. But my gosh, it has a silver lining for me in that I really realize now how far the women all over the world that I blog with are willing to go when one of us needs support.

    It's a gift. A whole other community to tap into. And to nurture.

    Thanks for being such a big part of my life, Stace. You mean the world to me.

  4. Beautifully said, Stacy. I agree 100%. I value my online friendships so much. They are so supportive and caring. I'm so glad I've had the chance to meet so many wonderful people.

  5. Stacy - I freakin' love you, man! I never winced at your perm, just the thought of it. Luckily, you are the only person I know who flawlessly pulls off a perm. :)

    Yes, our common thread is romance reading. No one in my RL reads them either. They turn their nose up to it,just like I did for so many years, but you and all of the many others share that joy with me. The beautiful friendships have been an added bonus that I didn't count on. You were one of the first to accept me in the circle, thank you.

  6. {{{BIG HUGS}}}
    My online friends mean the world to me. I adore each and every one of them very much. They are wonderful women who I can't say enough about. Like, MK, this week has really brought home alot of realities for me. Both horrific and enriching. The support and love that has been passed around, really says alot about the kind of community we have made.

    Thanks for being a wonderful friend, Stacy!!! :o)

  7. Hi Stacy. I don't know what I would have done w/o my online friends through some ups and downs over the last few years. You esp have been a god send when I had to have my cat put to sleep. Thanks for being such a wonderful friend.
    Love you

  8. I've always known that real friendships can be found online way better than off because it's easier online to find people who share your interests. I am also glad to have such wonderful online friends and I think your post was just beautiful.

  9. This sounds so familiar to me! I've made so many great friends online. And like you, most of my friends offline aren't romance readers.

    My online friends are some of the best friends that I've ever had! I don't know what I'd do without you all.

    Thanks for the great post, Stacy!

  10. Rach, I'm glad that you consider me one of those people. Right back atcha, sweetie. {{{hugs}}}

    Toni, it's really pretty amazing, isn't it? I treasure each of these friendships. They've gotten me through some difficult times.

    MK, I feel the same way about you, and I am so glad to have you for a friend. It has been a difficult week, and you're one of the ones I've leaned on. Thanx for being there.

    Kelley, it's been great meeting some of my favorite online people, you being one of them. Even if we don't chat all the time, it's nice having people we know will still be there, you know?

    Jodi, I don't know what it was about you, but I just liked you right away - you are sweet and funny and laugh at yourself, and you're also caring and crazy and someone great to be around. How could I not like you? Impossible *g*

    Jude, you know you're one of my all-time favorites - we've known each other so long, and I treausre each moment. You've been there for me more times than I can count.

    Mailyn, I love having you visit my blog - you say it like it is, and there's such a good heart to go along with that sassy attitude. Plus, you've hooked me up with some great music and movies. You're a renaissance chick *g*

    Michelle, it's been great having you around again, and getting to meet you this year was great. I don't know what I'd do somedays without my friends - they keep me sane LOL.

    You all are incredible friends, and I am so luck to have you in my life. Lova ya.

  11. And it's something people who don't have any on-line friends just don't get. But I care just as deeply about so many cyber-friends (like you) than I do my RL friends.

  12. Squeeeeee!!!!! Glad I can help. ^__^

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