I FINALLY slept past 5:30 this morning and it feels great! Traveling to Europe is wonderful, but that eight hour time difference kicks my butt every time!
But.......this post is not about my trip to Ireland (soon, I promise......) Instead I want to share about something that happened last week.
I began wondering as early as Tuesday, if I was going to have a "photo of the week" for my Project 52. I was tired and I had just been to a beautiful country that was so full of photographic possibilities that overwhelm set in the moment I began uploading photos to my computer.
While I was away, I made the conscious choice to be "offline". One of the reasons was to refrain from advertising the fact that my house was vacant, but I was also being extremely frugal with my "data usage" and did not want to rack up international charges if I didn't have to.
I was also feeling the need to disconnect from the noise of social media and instead chose to stay present and soak in all I could from my travels. I can easily get frustrated and impatient with online activities, but something happened last week that showed me the power and beauty of the global possibilities the internet provides. This experience shifted my perspective and filled me with gratitude to be living in such a world.
A few months ago, Kim Klassen, who writes one of my favorite blogs, revealed in a post that her husband had been diagnosed with leukemia. I have never met Kim or her husband in person, but have come to know and be constantly inspired by Kim's writing, images and the occasional email exchange.
Having lost my mother and a good friend to this undiscriminating disease, I was filled with sadness when I heard this news. I know first hand how a diagnosis like this affects everyone. (I am sure most of you do too........)
I wasn't aware that her husband was scheduled to have a stem cell transplant until while scrolling through my Instagram feed, I came across this post by Kim's friend Myriam Joseph:
I immediately grabbed a candle and then spent ten minutes looking for matches. This really was the only photo I made last week, so of course it is my:
"Project 52 - pic of the week".
The point of all this is, here I was feeling a little "snarky" about social media when it was brought to my attention the power of the online community. Of course I wish deeply I could do more than light a candle and this won't cure any disease, but sensing the energy this simple act was creating, made me pull back, count my own blessings and send good thoughts through the universe for a friend and her loved ones.
This is a small sampling of the 193 posts made with the hash tag "LightForJohn".
Before I end, I just want to thank all of you for being part of my community. This includes my online friends and those of you I am lucky enough to be able to engage with occasionally in "real time". Participating in social media through this blog, Facebook and Instagram has definitely enriched my life and broadened my experience of the world. While it's not always perfect, I now have a stronger sense of the important role it plays in our lives and I am grateful.
To read Kim's eloquent account of this experience, click here: Friday Finds (You will quickly discover, if you don't already know, she is an inspiration to many and I am so grateful I came across her work and her words when I did......)
PS You can still post with the hashtag "lightforjohn". While the surgery was a success, they will continue to need our support in the weeks and months to come.......