I admit it. I LOVE social media!! I love Facebook, I love blogging, I love reading blogs and Facebook, and I would so chirp and tweet if I even half-way understood it! I unashamedly admit that “My name is Alicia and I love social media.”
I have heard talk against such things but quite frankly, it goes in one ear and out the other. I am too busy blogging to pay much attention to it. I know there are some warnings to be heeded and so I am not trying to make light of having some good old-fashioned common sense when it comes to who you let into your private life. But, assuming you possess some of that common sense, the point of this blog entry will not be to convince you one way or another about social media but to let you in my head on why I adore it.
1. Instant (almost) access to those I love. Because of my love for friends and family, I love being able to keep in touch with many of them every single day without long phone calls or emails. Facebook allows me to say “Have a good day” or “I’m praying for you!” in 10 seconds and since I have the gift of gab, I could never get a phone call in that quick!
2. Picture sharing! A quick way to share pictures with others. Other places take a long time to load pictures but Facebook loads many of them very quickly so you don’t have to take all afternoon just trying to share pictures. I love watching the children of my friends grow up through pictures. It makes me feel not so far away from them.
3. Immediate prayer. When I was sick and became paralyzed, prayers all over the world were being said for me in a matter of minutes after a post. Just knowing that others are bringing you before the throne of God and interceding for you are an indescribable comfort in the very dark times. I have watched it happen over and over for others too. What a powerful way to quickly have access to the prayers and needs of others.
4. My personal story. Facebook is very personal to me because of the huge amount of support I receive to deal with my disability. I have received and still do receive so much encouragement from my Facebook friends that I always want to give back. I try very hard not to whine (because I don’t deal well with emotional babies) but on a rough day, it is great that the only thing I may be able to do is to be on Facebook and reach out to others and try to encourage them. Encouraging other people is a wonderful way to cheer yourself up! I also feel that because of all the support I receive and the interest you all have shown in my life, that I have an obligation to keep you updated on the Reagan family. So, if you are my friend on Facebook, you will get a day-by-day play (mostly) on the many things we find ourselves involved in. If you do not like reading the antics of our interesting family, you may want to hide my posts…and I wouldn’t blame you!:)
5. Practice for real life! Facebook is a wonderful virtual illustration of what we should be doing in real life – encouraging, reaching out, praying for one another, lifting one another up, being kind and complimentary and making friends. These are all great biblical things to do and there are only so many people around me to do this with. Facebook opens up the world for us to practice a Christ-like approach to others. Personal opinion here: This is why I do not use Facebook to engage in political arguments, Christian “grey” area discussions, to rebuke or fuss at others, or to make enemies. This is not the reason I am here.
I won’t use a list to share why I love blogging. I will, instead, just share my thoughts about it.
Blogging is for me. I am happy (and very thankful) that other people read my blog and are blessed but I write for me – not them. I am a little uncomfortable in my own skin when I have something emotional to say. Public speaking has helped me to be able to share my heart more passionately but I really have to make myself do that. I am very private in my emotions. My own hubby, who I have been married to for 13 years, can still probably tell you every time I have cried in front of him. I do cry, but I prefer to do it in my bathroom with the door locked and the sink running!
I have to stay on top of my emotions much more now that I am disabled. Things make me frustrated quicker, pity parties pop up their heads faster and the devil loves to make sure that he can try to ruin my day if he can. So, I blog. This is how I deal with the private things of my heart. This is how I can get things out and make sense of them. I love how therapeutic writing is for me. I love how life has so many analogies! I love reminding myself throughout the day of how “whatever happened” is a lesson for my life. So, I write. I write things in my head all the time. Some of them make it onto this blog and some do not. If no one ever read this blog, I would still write.
MY PERSONAL WEBSITE (http://www.aliciareagan.com)
This is the one that I feared I would get criticized over but then I got over caring if that happened or not because I just felt it was what I needed to do. My worry was that people would think I was trying to promote myself. My hubby was 150% behind it and actually my greatest cheerleader (in every masculine way) in getting it going and out there, and he assured me that was not what people would think. So, if you do think that, then please do not let me know because I enjoy living in denial about it.
We live in a very rural area. When I became paralyzed, no one showed me how to do anything. I just won’t even go into the details of the amount of trial and error that occurred in this home. Google and YouTube videos became my best friends as I would type in anything I needed to know and it would tell me or show me. When I finally received real physical therapy, I had to learn many things over again because I didn’t catch subtle moves on video and had still learned wrong.
Another thing was that I watched many videos on YouTube to learn how to do things, but 90% of those videos were guys. Strong, muscular guys. If you are a normal, shortish, not skinny or muscular girl, then it was a little defeating to think that you could ever do what that guy was doing. But, I have always been competitive with the guys so I went after it! However, I saw a need for a girl to demonstrate some stuff. Just a normal girl. If I could do it, and share with other people like me, then that could encourage them to try! So, the idea of a website was born.
It has grown and evolved as public speaking has arisen and will change even more now that we are traveling more and singing as a family. It won’t just be about me and my disability but as God expands our coasts, then the website will expand with that.
I love my little corner of the web and I already know that God has used it for the very purpose He put in my heart. I receive many emails from around the world of people thanking me for what is on there so that just thrills me.
There are many other avenues of social media and even though I don’t use them all, I love them. Communication has always been around. It just changes forms. I, for one, am glad that sending smoke signals went out of style and this is one reason why I love social media!