I have a mixed relationship with Facebook.
I hate the endless “a like means you hate cancer” (like who loves cancer?). I get frustrated at being reminded that there are such things as stupid questions (seriously people, use the search feature). I get alarmed by the bully-pulpit that develops in local politics (get involved but learn the facts before you post on a subject you have no knowledge about). And for the love of all things Holy, please do not put your personal crap on Facebook in a vague way and then ask people to respect your privacy.
Yet for all the reasons I might want to leave Facebook, I have one reason to be incredibly thankful.
Facebook has given me friends from across the world. Friends I have never (and may never) met in the real world. Friends that if we were neighbors we may never have known one another. I’ve written before about my blog friends, those who I have gotten to know through the power of their own words. This is the same, yet different.
Tonight I got a call from a PACS1 mom. We had “met” through e-mail and a Facebook support/share group. She sent me a quick question, I gave her my number and asked her to call me.
And she did.
We had an immediate rapport. Anyone listening in on the conversation would have thought that we had known one another for years. There was no awkwardness. There was no pregnant pause where you think to yourself: what the heck do I say to this person. We shared how our girls were alike and different. We laughed at how our children drive us crazy in the good way and commiserated in how they frustrate us in the bad way.
I am beyond lucky that our friends accept Bridget for who she is, that they support us and uplift us. Not to discount their value, but having compatriots in the PACS1 world makes me feel less alone in this life of a rare syndrome parent.
Facebook gave me that moment, that hour on the phone with a woman in Texas who is facing the same struggles and dreams that I am. A parent who gets the feeling of YES a diagnosis and a CRAP it changes nothing in our lives.
So thank you, Facebook, for giving all of us a place where we can find our village.