Some people reading this (once I have published and shared this) may feel the way I do. Maybe I am over-reacting a little. But I am trying to deal with a loss of something that has had a major impact on my life for a few years now.
So let me start with the back story.
Not long after my eldest was born, I joined a website found on the back of a Heinz rice cereal packet. Being my first baby, and the only one in my circle of friends to have a child, I was interested in all the information provided on the website, ranging from development, to tips on feeding. While there, I stumbled across a little community in the forum.
I was a quiet beginning, but being the pushy busy-body that I am, I quickly worked my way into the thick of it. I was sharing the milestones made by my eldest, and soon, the joys (and not so crash hot parts) of being pregnant with my second child.
After a while, for whatever reason, the forum admin decided to shut the forum and reopen it on a different platform. So many of us made the jump on to the new website, and continued to share in each others ups and downs, by this stage, we were starting to share everything, not just parenting skills. We enjoyed the features the new website provided such a sharing photos, little smiley faces, the little sort of things to help us express our personalities.
Time went on, and again, for reasons unknown, Heinz admin decided to shut down the forum for good. Friendships were thick and we couldn’t bear the thought of not having each other to turn to, so a few members started up another website for us all to go to once the orignal one had closed.
Again, we all made the jump (of course, it didn’t happen without a few dramas, mainly due to one person who will remained unnamed, but some readers will giggle and know who I’m talking about!)
Once the platform provider asked us to start paying for our use, we created yet another website, and made the jump again. So you are starting to get the idea of how close we are.
These gorgeous, hilarious, and compassionate women have helped me through so much over the past five years. They laughed along with all the funny things my kids got up to, gave great advice on things from cooking to relationships and health for both ourselves and our children. We do a christmas card list and secret santa (though its pretty obvious when the gift is from me. Since I am the only one in Western Australia. They just have to look at from where it was sent, and they know!) Gifts get sent to those who have just had a child, or if there is a significant birthday looming.
My only disappointment is that being the only one in Western Australia, everyone else is miles away and I can’t meet up with these ladies, for example, go out for coffee like some of them regularly do, or organise play dates for our children. But despite the distance, they have supported me greatly, especially so after the young one was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. The morning after he was flown to hospital, I sent a text message to a couple of the ladies and asked them to tell everyone the bad news. Everyone felt the shock and shared the pain of his diagnosis. So, to show their support, they rallied together and sent a gift basket to the hospital, complete with flowers, a teddy for the boy, and some much-needed chocolate! I cried when it arrived! I was so touched by their thoughts.
But I have been walking around my house, moping a little. You see, we recently had a bit of drama on the website, and some members left. I guess you can’t expect everyone to like each other, but now that we have a private group on Facebook, and most prefer the features on there, and the website is being shut down.
While I’m not losing contact with any of these ladies (well, I hope not anyway!), and I am still talking to many of them on a daily basis, but I feel like I have lost one of my best friends. We all helped to build the website. A big part of me went into it. It was like a child. We all helped to nurture it and help it grow, become something magnificent.
I don’t know why I feel this way over a website. Its stupid really. But I cant help but feel that I somehow let the site down by not maintaining input. I feel like I have let my friends down.
But I am so grateful for the friendship and support from these wonderful ladies. I am glad we can still keep in contact once the forum is gone for good.
Dont worry, I will get over my mopey-ness.