Real Life and Online Friends
Enjoy the wedding, Michelle! I've been loving your writing ever since I discovered your Substack, and this piece was especially poignant.
Having recently moved to a new city, I maintain lots of my old relationships via text, email, and the occasional phone call, but after an extended stay back home recently, I realized how much I'd been missing in-person connections with people I've known for decades. There's just no substitute!
I am so fortunate to be one of the people in the Zoom boxes hanging out with you!
Having a good balance of online and in person is healthy for me. Sometimes based on circumstance it comes in cycles. Almost all my work has been online for the past year+. I just started some in person work again and have found it simultaneously exhausting and energizing. Loving it though. Just not forever.
I have learned so much from my broader Zoom box relationships. I've been in a meeting with people who work in airline crewing in six different continents! This would be hard to accomplish in person. To me it shows how common our experiences are.
I love this post so much! Before I joined online communities like WoP and FTO, I didn't think it was possible to feel this connected to people I've never met (and potentially never will meet) in person. You, and some of my other internet friends have become some of my favorite people to talk to throughout the week!😊💜
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I love how this turned out. SO MANY FEELS.
such a lovely piece, I laughed out loud at the "most aggressive handshake". have never understood why we do that -- it's so pointless! this idea of online friends vs real-life friends is top of mind for me too since I just posted about going nomadic for a bit http://tobiwrites.com/p/i-became-a-nomad and missing my friends back "home". That said, I love the arc of online friends to real life friends. Conference coming soon!
Airport pickups awww the internet misses you already! 💕💕 have a great weekend offline!
This is a really beautiful essay Michelle, both in the sentiments you express and how well you express them--a really poised jewel of an essay. Bravo!
I love not knowing what journey you're going to take us on each week. It's never the same but it's always profound.
Beautiful and thought-provoking reflection as always! Honestly, I'm struggling with the idea of Internet friends because while I consider you and a few other people we know as friends, I feel like there is a "real-life" element that impedes me from feeling fully like it's a friendship. Perhaps it's tied to broader trust issues I have 😅. I've definitely been thinking about this a lot and this piece got my gears turning.
All that said, I'm certainly feeling very lucky that our paths have crossed in this digital realm. Lucky to know you!
Hahaha airport people watching, that's a favorite pasttime when nothing happens and we just hang around. Online and IRL friends, each is great in their own rights, and I'd be remiss to say that I don't like friends who's just a DM vs an ocean away!
What a lovely piece and meditation on human connection, technology and the changing culture and its trade-offs. Have a great time at the wedding, Michelle! I appreciate your online friendship and connection immensely. 🙏♥️
You and I. In person. Soon.
My irl trip with people who allowed me I to their kitchen and home offices all this time make this a very poignant and timely read.
"My online friends can be in Idaho or Milan, San Francisco or Lisbon, yet they can pop up on my screen at any moment for a chat." -- Isn't that magical? Glad to be the friend from Milan popping up on your screen at any moment for a chat! :) Nice words, as always, Michelle. A pleasure to read your thoughts.
It's amazing how the internet has brought together with people from all over the world, and allowed us to connect over shared interests and experiences. Glad to be internet friends with you.
Awww what a great intro, enjoy Your weekend of offline revelry!
Came for the people watching painted in words. Stayed for the internet friend feels. Hopefully we will meet soon without requiring travel sized Michelle to porter my luggage. 🙂