It started when I stumbled across a "mommy board" where all of the women were expecting babies at the same time as me. Many were experiencing the same problems as me. Many had the same questions as me. I can't pinpoint the moment where this mommy board turned. Turned from being a resource of anonymous women providing answers, to being a conglomeration of wonderful friends providing support and comfort. But it did happen. And over the course of four years the desire to go from being friends through a network of fibre cables to being friends in the flesh became quite great. So much so, that some of us finally decided to meet.
Over the weekend, six of us from across the country converged in New York City to meet in person for the first time. I wasn't the least bit nervous. Through the boards and then through blogs, I felt as though I had gotten to know these women quite well. They were at a distinct disadvantage with me, however. I hadn't blogged all year so they didn't really know what had been going on with me and over time I'm sure the memory of me had faded a bit. After all, I was still only pixels and memories to them at this point. Nonetheless, they still wanted to meet me and I them.
In short, it was a fabulous weekend. The trip was everything I had hoped it would be and more. The women were everything I had come to know them to be and more.
I don't want to take away from the great posts that my new "real life" friends have already written, so let me point you their way so you can check out their take on the trips in first person view. It's interesting to me that all of them wrote very different posts about the same weekend. They all wrote their posts with focuses from their own strengths and their personality. Had I not have met them in person and been part of the weekend, why they each wrote with a different slant would have been totally lost on me. I love that I've now been able to delve into that aspect of them and see even more into their posts.
- Joanna wrote a fabulous post about the trip and the good, human side of the internet and summed it up beautifully as "Jelly Bellies for the soul." It was a fitting post coming from a woman who is even smarter and wittier than her posts allow her to be, and that is saying much.
- Lindsay wrote a great post about where we went, what we did, and how we ate, shopped, and twittered ourselves across the city. Lindsay is a planner and an organizer. She sent out spreadsheets and Word documents about our trip plans and emergency contacts. Can I just say just how much I love that?
- Laura is the photographer I hope to be one day. She took some great pictures and applied some skillful editing to make us all look good. Her post is loaded with some of those great photos.
- London wrote of our "shenanigans" and conversations. London has a flair for writing and words and it was only fitting that she would focus on that aspect.
- Rita wrote--well I'm sure Rita has written her post in her head a dozen times (As she says she often does, and I admit to doing too. I intend to rectify this I swear!). Since Rita hasn't published her post, I'll speculate on what Rita has swimming in her head. I'm guessing Rita would write a post focusing more on people's character and personality. Rita herself is a person booming with character and personality, as are the other women. But in Rita's case, it seems to come easiest for her to know exactly who she is and to be precisely that.
It was such a wonderful experience that I hope to meet more of my online friends in the future. It's truly amazing to me that this whole weekend started its making four years ago as nothing more than a search for answers after seeing two little pink lines on a pregnancy test. And know I have the pleasure of calling five amazing women...friends.