I have never been a very social person. I belong to a local guild but am not an active participant, I belong to quilt group, but I only attend occassionaly, but the one place I did drop in at every day is an online forum that I have been a member of for 2 1/2 yrs.
Here I have made friends with some wonderful people that enjoy the same things that I do, you may say these are only cyber friends, but they are not. Many of us have traveled long distances to attend quilt shows and exhibitions to meet each other in person, some have dropped in on these "cyber friends" as they have traveled across country on vacation or to visit family.
Here we have prayed together, asked for advice, celebrated weddings, births of children, grandchildren and probably some great grandchildren and we have laughed and cried together at the loss of parents, children and spouses. We have shared our talents and our resources, helped those that had lost everything through no fault of their own and have given to celebrate life as some battle through illness and strife. We have supported our military through gifts of Christmas stockings, pillowcases for the wounded and daily prayers. Projects from the Heart, that is what we called these endeavors and we have all been blessed and made stronger because of each other and the love that is shared on this site.
We have had our pitfalls and there have been some that were less than honorable in their intentions but we have moved past these. We learned that one needs to take precautions when a forum grows beyond certain expectations. yet many of us have remained close and we depend on each other for the friendship that we have found.
On Tuesday, September 1st as I logged on to my computer to share some news with friends I was surprised to see that this site had shut down their forum without explanation or warning. the only message was that there was restructuring going on and to check back for updates at a later time. I was devasted. Where were my friends? How were they taking this news? Who would I turn to when I was feeling so down?
Thank God that some of us had exchanged email addresses so I headed there and reached out to those that I could. Everyone I reached was in shock and struggling to find ways to get in touch with as many as we could. Facebook, blogs and message boards anything to stay in touch with what was happening to our friends, that seemed to be the one thing on everyone's mind.
As of today our forum is still down and either members will not go back or we will find out who the truly dedicated members are if/when we return. As for the website in question, well I do hope it does not affect them in a negative manner but they have thousands of very unhappy members all over the world.
To my cyber firends, I miss you all so very much and I hope that we can "chit chat" again soon and join in on another Saturday night "sew in" very soon.
Take care all and may God Bless each and every one of you "Angels"