Actually, I did not make a friend. But I did move a friendship to a new level and that’s kind of exciting. You see, I met this awesome lady and we started chatting in the same room and then we moved out friendship to AIM and, just this last week, it progressed to the phone.
I feel a bit like a school girl again! In fact, I feel a lot like a school girl again and I certainly felt that way when I was a wee bit nervous before the first time she called. It reminds me of how I made friends online when I was a teenager. We’d talk in a public place, we’d move to IM and eventually, if we became close enough, we’d talk on the phone. That was the natural progression of the Internet friendship when I was younger.
And it was fun. I could talk on the phone a lot. I still can. Im a talker. After 2 hours on the phone with my friend last night, my throat was begging for me to STFU. I have a lot of friends and not all of them are so awesome on the phone. I hadn’t realized how much I miss it.
Nor did I give much thought to why I pretty much stopped moving to the phone with my Internet friends. There is no single reason but many factors. The places where I chatted shut down. I became busier in high school, a trend that continued after I graduated and I began working. I began dating and married Ryan so much of my time was dedicated to him. I moved to Japan and I rarely called my mom, let alone new friends. I struggled with depression and other issues and, in general, I kind of stopped making new friends via the Internet for a while.
But this ain’t no pity party. It’s actually the exact opposite because now I remember how awesome friends are and I’ve made a great new friend. That isn’t to say I didn’t have any good friends. Some of my best friends now, both locally and internationally, are Internet friends. We just don’t talk on the phone much.
Whether or not our friendships rely on the phone, I’ve made some really awesome friends online. Somehow, I have connected with people across time zones, state lines and cultural divides. I’ve found wonderful people who listen to me when I need a friend and amazing people who make me laugh like crazy. And crazy people who are a match for my own insanity. And, hopefully, I’ve been able to provide the same for them.
So for those critics who say you can’t forge real relationships online, maybe you just fail at making friends while we do not. The Internet has changed my life with these amazing friendships.e