I had an entirely different subject picked out for my musings today but having just completed a number of interactions with some of MySpace “friends”, I have decided to go in a different direction. I have made a connection with so many wonderful, strong, caring and sharing new people there that I just have to share.
The last place that I ever expected to meet such a group of people was through a social networking site. Most of them are survivors or caregivers to survivors. Their stories are absolutely amazing and the depths to which they have had to go in order to survive is nothing short of miraculous. And for all that they have endured; the one theme that I see constantly repeated is that they care about other people to a degree not normally seen and that they are willing to share themselves and their experiences with others so that others don’t feel so alone.
For those who are here in support of me as a cancer survivor, I have received tons of wonderful prayers and blessings and offers of help if there is anything that I need. I have received the stories of so many who are going through radiation and chemotherapy for anywhere from the first to the fourth time. And yet, there they are, reaching out to me with their prayers and apologizing for not being able to write sooner because they have been too sick or preparing for surgery or recovering. I have received so many notes of thanks from those who are out there fighting their own battles for the fact that I am willing to share my own story, something to which they can relate and appreciate and understand. They are letting me know how much they feel supported in their own struggles when others take the time to listen and share and pray for them as well. And to all of those caregivers, I must keep telling you that you have the harder part and that you will never know how much you are appreciated.
There are those who have come to me in support of my being a survivor of domestic abuse. They have shared the awful atrocities that they have endured, the ends to which they have been driven in their own retaliations and lives that have been full of nothing but pain for as long as they can remember. And they have come here to share their stories so that others can know that there is no shame in these lives, that there are many others who know the same experiences and to thank others who are willing to speak out and tell the world that this is not right and is not acceptable and they are not to blame.
So, to every single one of you who has taken the time to write to me, who has posted words of kindness and understanding, who has shared your own story to help others and who has let me know that by my sharing my experiences that I have helped you, I thank you. Each one of you is a very special person because you are reaching out to others with your love and caring. You are strong and courageous in your own survival. You couldn’t be a better “friend” if you knew me intimately in person for what you have given to me. And as I am sure that each of you knows about me by now that if there is ever anything that I can do to help you, I will do so. You are all in my thoughts and prayers every day.
Barbara Jacoby is an award winning blogger that has contributed her writings to multiple online publications that have touched readers worldwide.