When I started thinking about what to write for this post, two very different examples of connections immediately came to mind. One involves a quick but valuable tip for bloggers; the other is the challenge of maintaining personal connections as we travel through life.
I. Connections on the web: an explanation and a helpful tip for BloggersYesterday I mentioned “broken links” and talked about a tool I found to repair them. I was referring to
the computer links embedded within a blog post - like the link I provided in the previous sentence to take you to my article! When a blogger writes a post, they can add links to words, so that when those words are clicked upon they connect to other pertinent information. The link may lead to another article on that blog, or any other article on the web. If that link is not entered correctly or no longer leads to a valid page, the connection will be broken and the reader will not be able to find the information.
|This is not the screen a blogger hopes a reader will find, when they clink on a link in their blog post|
- Remember to use the "Check this Link" feature on Blogger (I assume there is something similar on other platforms.) I can't believe how many times I have incorrectly entered a link! It is a really easy mistake to make. Using this feature would have prevented a lot of my broken connections from happening.
- Be careful when entering my url when commenting on another blog. While checking my broken links, I realized a number of them were because a blogger inadvertently typed their own information incorrectly. My apologies to anyone on whose blog I may have done this!
II. Connections in real life: words of comfort when friends and family are far away.
The most important connections in life are the ones we have with other people - especially those dear to us. Because of life circumstances, we frequently find ourselves far apart from those we love.
I may have had more practice at this than most. I've moved a lot from place to place. I have gotten to know and then lost touch with many people, but I've tried to stay connected to good friends.
- Age 3: we moved to a new house 150 miles from the old one. I was too little to remember, but I probably missed my playmates until I made new friends.
- Age 14: my family moved from Calgary, Canada to Spain. (We originally only planned to be there a year, but we all loved it there so much that year turned into four.) This was long before reasonable overseas telephone rates or the invention of the Internet. Prior to the move, my sisters and I struck a deal with my parents - for an unlimited supply of postage to write or mail things to our friends!
- Age 17: I left home to go to college in a city in the United States where I didn't know a soul; my parents and younger sisters remained overseas, and my twin sister was several states away. It was then that I first discovered some lines of a poem, Homesick in Heaven, by Oliver Wendell Holmes. These words have been my touchstone ever since.
- Since starting college: I have moved a number of times - to London, West Virginia, back to Spain, to Pennsylvania, Ohio and Montana. Keeping in touch with far-away friends was sometimes hard. One of the perks of Facebook is that it has provided an opportunity to reconnect with many friends I had thought forever lost!
- Currently: The poetry of Holmes has become comforting to me again. My daughter has plans that will prevent her from coming home for more than a few weeks of this summer of her sophomore college year. My son will be gone the entire month of June on a backpacking trip. I will miss my offspring even more intensely than I missed my parents when I left home as a teenager.
Though the chain may lengthen, it will never, ever break.
Because, where we love - and where we are loved - is home.
Who are your most important connections, and are they near to you?
#1000 Speak for Compassion/ Connections.
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