When my friends Jenne and Kari called me (together) a couple of weeks ago, I thought they were calling to arrange lunch together. That's what we do. I take pictures of their kiddos, and we get together for lunch/dinner occasionally. Turns out they had something big up their sleeve. When I first clicked on the link they sent me, I was more than a little overwhelmed. Jenne says I responded with, "Oh, my stars" and that's probably true.
And here's the thing. That same morning, literally, I was working on a blog post about how social media is not all bad. In fact, I find it to be all kinds of good. I have made connections with fellow adoptive parents, with photographers, with scrappy gals, with other women diagnosed with cancer, and the list could go on. I've watched prayer chains happen, support given, relationships form.
I have 994 friends on Facebook. I'm pretty sure I do not know that many people in real life, much less call them friends. And, yet, I receive on an almost daily basis notes of encouragement from these friends.
I was initially not just overwhelmed, but a little embarrassed. Despite my chattiness online, if you know me in real life, then you know I do not like attention. I'm one of those sit-in-the-back-of-the-room kind of girls. I am not eloquent enough to say how much I love and appreciate you all for your generosity to our family. From the sweet lady at work who tells me how excited she is for me about this trip every week. . . to the friends I know in real life. . . to the friends I've never even met who contributed - thank you isn't enough, but THANK YOU. I could not have dreamed something like this up, and it was the biggest and best surprise possible.
We haven't told the kids yet. We kept it a secret initially because I didn't believe it would actually happen. And now that it is happening, it feels as if such a big deal needs a big reveal, but we haven't figured out how or when to do that. [Please, keep us keep it a secret from the kids by not mentioning it to them!]