One of the most surprising joys of blogging has been the online friendships I’ve made over the years.
My husband finds this to be absolutely unbelievable. “These are professional networking contacts, not friends.”
He is so very wrong.
Professional networking contacts don’t mobilize and send a steady stream of superhero cards and toys to a contact whose 6-year-old son is enduring chemotherapy every Friday.
Professional networking contacts don’t change their Facebook avatar in support of marriage equality, or an acquaintance’s dying mother’s favorite food, or to tell the world that cancer can suck it.
Professional networking contacts don’t share marital tips, gynecological advice, and in-depth details for managing their kids’ chronic constipation.
Professional networking contacts don’t text each other late at night with exciting news, pics of new tattoos, or unspeakable tragedies like losing a friend to domestic violence.
I have made real friends through this crazy Internet thing. Real friends whose triumphs and heartaches touch me and inspire me every day.
Courtney is one such friend.
She is a schoolteacher, photographer, and blogger in Nebraska. She’s 33 years old and has two beautiful young children. She married a tall, handsome, funny, musical man named Scott shortly after college. Their love for each other is extraordinary.
Last December, right before Christmas, Courtney shared with our blogging friends that Scott had just been diagnosed with a rare form of cancer called angiosarcoma of the pleura.
Courtney’s unshakable faith, strength, and love have been an incredible blessing to witness these past eight months.
Not to mention her sense of humor…
I am so sad to tell you that my friend Courtney buried her beloved husband Scott yesterday. He was only 34-years-old and had just completed his final radiation treatment earlier this month.
It is heartbreaking to see the excruciating toll this awful disease took on Scott and his family. But you can also see what an incredible beacon of hope, love, and strength Courtney was for her family during this difficult time.
This is the Courtney that I have come to know and love through my blogging group. She lights up the room and is a gift to everyone around her.
I cannot imagine the grief that she is facing right now and will continue to endure without Scott by her side.
And halfway across the country, how do I even hug her? Or help her?
But this group of “professional networking contacts” has banded together to do the one thing we can all do—and that is pray.
Please pray for Courtney and her children. Pray for peace and strength and a never-ending supply of good memories. And please pray for a cure. Nobody should have to endure what this family, and so many other families, are facing every day in their battle against this hideous disease.
Our blogging community is also trying to raise $25,000 in memory of Scott to help our friend Courtney focus on her family right now, and not on the stress of mounting medical bills.
If you would like to contribute in any way, please click here to visit our Give Forward campaign.
Oh yes, my dears. Internet friendships are real. And they can make a difference.
Holding you all close in my heart, today and always,