Just my two cents

Musings on social media and the world as I see it


What’s really important in life


Thanks to Sterben Edelweiss for this great pic. http://sterbenedelweiss.deviantart.com/art/Hugs-319958604

It’s really easy to get stuck in our daily routines. For many of us, that routine is filled from morning to night with texts, phone calls, emails, and social network posts from laptops and desktops and smartphones and tablets. Usually, it all seems like what we’re doing is the most important thing in the world.

And then, you get a phone call that stops you in your tracks and makes you realize that the things that seemed so important really aren’t in the whole grand scheme of things.

Yesterday morning I got a blast from the past. It was from a dear friend from college, Deanna, who tweeted a picture of me with her mom. In fact, she was my maid of honor in my first wedding. We were very close for years, but then life happens and people change and move on. She moved to California and I stayed here and then, well, life just continued.

We sporadically kept in touch through the years (more years than I’d like to count!), first by letters and then through email, back in the days before social networks. Yes, I am that old. Of course more recently, we’ve shared more through the magic and ease of Facebook and Twitter. She’s been back from California for about 10 years, and although we had tried to make plans to get together, it just didn’t happen for one reason or another.

When I saw that picture yesterday, I was flooded with many happy memories, some that I had totally forgotten about. I spent a lot of time with Deanna and her family, and those were some of the happiest times of my life. But sometimes the past becomes the past and we don’t think about it. Maybe because we get wrapped up in everything that life brings as we get older.

Deanna’s mom, Mary Ann, was an absolutely wonderful and wise woman. She was quick with a smile and a laugh and truly enjoyed her children and their friends. She always had wonderful, calm advice to give if you needed it or asked for it. She also lost her husband way too early to an incurable brain tumor, and she did it with poise and grace that still amazes me to this day.

Having been in touch with Deanna, I knew Mary Ann had been very ill, and I knew it was just a matter of time. And so a few hours after I got the picture, I sent a message to Deanna through Facebook for an update. And less than a half hour later, my phone rang. It was Deanna, choking back tears, telling me her mom had passed about 20 minutes before, surrounded by her family. She was no longer suffering and was finally at peace and reunited with her husband and love of her life, Neil.

We did not talk long, just long enough for her to know I cared and I sent my heartfelt condolences and tried to comfort her during such a difficult time. And even though we have not seen each other for years, she said there would be a small memorial service for “Meeps” and she’d love it if I could come. And our conversation ended with an “I love you” on both ends.

And it’s when you get a phone call like that, when you hear another person’s pain, and when you feel the kind of empathy I did, that everything just falls into place. You see things with greater clarity. You understand that the important things in life are not the deadlines or the content or the branding or how many hours we spend working.

What really matters are our connections to each other, our shared experiences and emotions and our constantly changing relationships. It’s about being a good friend, a supportive daughter, a loving and caring spouse or partner. And it’s about being there for others when they need you, especially during the difficult times.

And so now I will reunite with a friend, and it’s such a shame that it took something so sad to bring us together again, in person. Because really, there is nothing like a warm embrace to show someone you love and care for them – and that’s not something any social network can ever provide.

So take the time to be with the people you care about. Pick up a phone and make plans to see them. Hug them, kiss them, share your feelings with them. That’s what life is really all about.



When I read that WordPress was down yesterday, I didn’t get upset. My first thought was at least I now have an excuse for why I haven’t posted anything in a week. Fortunately for most, it was back up pretty quickly and that was a good thing. For me, all I could think was that I really don’t have an excuse, except for TIME. 

I read some interesting things this week. The first was a tweet from one of the people I follow on Twitter, @unmarketing. Scott is a great guy who puts his own personality into everything he does and he definitely practices what he preaches. I’ve learned a lot from him about engaging with people in this social media world of ours. This week, I read that he posted his tweet # 50,000. Amazing. And he manages to run his own company, travel, raise a son, and spend TIME on the golf course.

Then I read a post from @ginidietrich. Gini’s blog, the Fight Against Destructive Spin, is full of interviews with interesting people, along with a variety of topics and suggestions for businesses and individuals. Even her #FollowFriday recommendations are done through a blog post, taking the TIME to carefully explain why we should follow those she is recommending, rather than a quick tweet. She’s also an avid biker who I’m sure I could never even dream of keeping up with, just like her blog, and she and makes the TIME to do this.

Then I read a post by another of my favorite folks in the Twitterverse, @katjaib. Kat is a great lady whose bio tells me she is working to find the balance in life and finding the TIME to do it all. In her blog post this week, she pondered the reasons she was a little behind on her blog (I love that I’m not the only one so THANK YOU!), with a thoughtful look at striving to be perfect, and some fun reminders on how to keep it in perspective. And she found the TIME to write a perfect post.

Then there’s @MackCollier, another person on Twitter who writes one great blog post after another, all while running his own company and finding the best ways to do things. And he even does the Twitter chat called #blogchat, which I haven’t found the TIME to sit it on. But at the same TIME, he’s finding the TIME to share his lessons learned with all of us. If I could ever find the TIME to read Mack’s posts or sit in on his chats, I’d certainly have a better blog with more posts and do a better job at promoting it.

These are just a few of the people who amaze me, and either inspire me or make me feel like a complete slacker… I haven’t figured out which! (And an apology to all those others out there who are not mentioned in this blog because there are SO many of you!). I’m calling upon these fantastic folks to share their thoughts on how they find the TIME to do all that they do. First, do you sleep? Second, how do you fit everything you need to do to make a living into a day and still have time to do your blog post, tweet, and do the things you love and have TIME for family and friends? I think we can all learn a bit from you. So THANK YOU in advance!

And if anyone else wants to add to this, PLEASE DO!