I was 27 the first time I used the internet, I was a stay at home mom with four young house trolls and a husband too often far from home in service of his country. I had a computer, I got my first one In 1993. It was a beast of a machine, a wonderful machine, really not much more than a glorified word processor, but it allowed me to print my words to more than scattered notebooks and scraps of paper, it didn’t stop the notebooks and scattered papers from piling up though, it never will.
Fast forward to 1997 and we were dialed in the World Wide Web of Wonder. I was in point and click .com nirvana. I searched out and soaked up so much knowledge. I emailed friends and family everyday, at least I attempted to. I found places to write, to mentor, and learn, I became part of the online community.
Internet friends started talking about Facebook, encouraging me to join. I didn’t. I wouldn’t. I checked it out, but my usual non-judgmental self became judgmental and I concluded this Facebook thing was for attention seeking, over sharing, drama addicts and bored housewives.
I figured it was probably much like MySpace, which I thought was simply dreadful. So, I refused to take part . . . but then . . . my family members joined the Book of Face and I realized it was actually a pretty cool way to have more of the interaction with them I so desperately desired. One day and I was hooked like a fish with a juicy worm on a hook.
I re-connected with old and dear friends I never thought I would see again, I made amazing new and fabulous friends, something I am generally incapable, or maybe just unwilling to do in the real world, and my life actually felt fuller. I kind of love Facebook.
Then there was this invite for a beta site called CafeMom. Pfft, dumb. I was bored though and the idea of being among the first to check out a new website and offer insights and suggestions sounded intriguing, so I joined. Life changed for me. It truly did. The life altering change happened when a stranger, a beautiful, fantastic, and wonderful stranger invited me to a group she was building there, an autism support group.
Historically, I have always steered clear of support groups, I never truly found much support within them. Something just felt right though. I have two boys on the spectrum and thought, if anything, I could offer support, advice, and encouragement to other moms blazing and tumbling along the same path. I never expected to be the recipient of any of those things, but I was.
The friendships I forged there transcended the group, they became more than my autism support group friends, they became my true, real, and lasting friends.
Then this thing called Pinterest popped up. Ha! Waste of time for sure! No way was I getting sucked in to that nonsense. I suppose you can guess what happened, the vacuum that is all things positively pinteresting sucked me right in. I can truly say I am addicted to Pinterest, to pinning and re-pinning. This may sound silly, but it’s therapeutic for me and quite calming. I kind of love Pinterest.
I write. A lot. When people would find out, they would always ask where my blog was, what blogging platform I used, and why the heck don’t you have a blog? You should totally start a blog.
Honestly, I used to think of blogging in much the same way I felt about avocados and I didn’t like avocados. I’d never actually tasted an avocado, but I knew I wouldn’t like them. In truth, I didn’t really know what a blog was. I had no idea most of my favorite places to visit online were, in fact, blogs.
One day, I accidentally ingested a bit of guacamole. Taste bud heaven opened up, I loved avocados. Loved them. I figured if I could love the vegetafruit called an avocado, maybe, maybe I was being wrongly stubborn about other things.
I started a blog. I love blogging. I love blogging and avocados and Facebook and an online support group and Pinterest. Love them.
I just know ya’ll were simply dying to know my history of all things internet, (you didn’t know you wanted to know, but you did and now you do). Then again, I may have just bored ya to tears, which was actually my inspiration for writing this all down, not to bore you to tears, but because I was bored.
I shouldn’t be bored because I have tons to do, other things I should be writing, and laundry and getting dressed, which is precisely why I am doing this instead. I don’t wanna do those other things . . .
Crystal R. Cook
I do love how the “book of a face” keeps me in contact with family and friends overseas. It does have it uses, hehe
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The story of our collective I-will-never-be-part-of-that-online-community lives 😣
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*giggling hard* I SO VERY GET IT!
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