Sunday, 2 August 2015

The Frustrating Distance Between Us



I’m a big fan of the internet and will forever be grateful for the people I’ve met and continue to meet and the friendships I’ve formed and continue to form. Through Twitter and Facebook I’ve met the most amazing people, expanded my horizons, and found support beyond anything I could have hoped for. But – you knew this was coming, didn’t you – there are days when a friendship ‘only’ being virtual gets extremely frustrating.

Without naming issues or identifying those dealing with them – because my friends know who they are and theirs are not my stories to share – I have to say that it breaks my heart that I can’t physically be in their presence. While I’m not much of a hugger at the best of times, all my instincts scream at me to wrap them in my arms and hold them close. Having thousands of miles between me and those I want to comfort leaves me feeling helpless and frustrated.

What I can do to show my love and support all too often feels like not enough, a sad and insufficient substitute for what I want to be able to give. Sometimes words are not enough, inadequate, or too much. Some situations require more than clichés and empty, be it heartfelt, words.  All I want is to be present, hold my friends’ hands and pass the tissues when required. A direct message on Facebook, while better than nothing, does not allow me to give the level of comfort I want to provide.


I realize this post is rather self-indulgent. While it is very frustrating that I can’t physically stand by my friends while they go through very though times, my issue is trivial compared what they are actually facing. I wanted to say it anyway because it has been hitting me very hard over the past few weeks, and because I want those friends to know that while I may not always have the right words at the right moment, they’re forever in my heart and on my mind.

18 comments:

  1. Think I can safely speak for all of us when I say we feel you in our hearts and that's where it really matters. Actually, for me, anyway, it may even be better than a physical presence. I had people all around me last night, but the most comfort I got was the few minutes I retreated to my car and texted with you. So, yeah...while I would love nothing more than to finally get to hug you in person...your virtual hugs are priceless to me. It's odd to say that my best friend is someone I've never met who live half a world away, but it's true - and - the fact that you're virtual means you're with me ALL the time. I love you, my friend. <3

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    1. I love you too, gorgeous. I just felt so frustrated when I went to bed last night, and still when I got up again this morning that I had to write the words. You know where to find me, regardless of time(zones), if you need me.

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  2. I agree with Jaycee. While I'd dearly love to run to Ireland for hugs from you, your support from half a world away has been no less helpful/effective because of the distance. And I don't find it self-indulgent at all to feel frustrated. I know when I'm on the other side of things I'm frequently frustrated when I can't physically be there for the people I care about.

    Your love and your words are enough. You, just as you are, are enough. I love you dearly and there's nothing virtual about that. <3

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    1. You are right, there is nothing virtual about my love for you and Jaycee (and one or two others I could name but won't). I guess it all got to me last night and this morning. Like I said to Jaycee, I'm always here and you know how to find me <3

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  3. Yeah - ditto the frustration part - I've felt that a lot lately too - that I can't be 'enough' for everyone I care about. But as for being together for real, I guess I kinda hope that someday we can all meet and hang out and when that day comes I want it to be filled with laughter - not tears. And... maybe wine.

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    1. I can't promise you there won't be tears if, no when, we all get together, but I do promise they will be happy tears. Wine is a given of course :)

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    2. Can you imagine? It will be so epic.

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  4. I think sometimes that my internet friends are more comforting, more fun, more genuine than some 'real' friends I have. And I think words do matter, especially coming from a friend who cares. And virtual hugs are just as meaningful. 😊

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    1. That ^. 100% that. Is it because we're all basically introverts? I find WAY more comfort, laughter, inspiration with my virtual friends than I do with my real life ones - and that, sadly, includes family most times. You all know me so much better than anyone in real life.

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    2. Maybe it's just frustration on my part. When I run out of things to say I feel horrible for 'falling silent'. If we were together I could just hold your hand or something, be supportive without having to say a word. And that's one thing that's impossible in a chat. *shrugs*, most of the time I prefer my online friendships over the real life ones as well. I guess the perfect scenario doesn't actually exist.

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  5. You & your hubby are truly the BEST friends I've never personally met ... but my family actually did! You both are as REAL & GENUINE in person as online!! I, too, hate not being able to get to my Internet friends when they are in need! If I ever when the big lottery ... on my bucket list ... to go visiting my *real* friends! So ... from a world away ... REAL Love from Alaska

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    1. Thank you Ann. I've said it before but I'll say it again, your family were a pleasure to have as guests and show around. Did you ever get to eat Shepherd's Pie? And yes, if I ever win the lottery I'll go on a trip around the world to meet all the friends I've never met face to face.

      We love you back from Ireland

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  6. I don't think there's anything self-indulgent about your post, it shows you care about your friends and want to be there for them. And by the sounds of it you are even though to you it feels as if you're not doing enough. But I get your frustration.

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    1. Thank you Yvonne. It does get frustrating at times, but it beats doing nothing any day, so I guess it's all good. It just got to me over the past 24 hours.

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  7. A beautiful post, sweet girl. The miles between us have no effect on your fantastic hugs. <3

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    1. Thank you, Cody. Most of the time it's enough but there are occasions when I really wish I could be physically there <3

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  8. Very heartfelt words and so true. Helena, you have a wonderful way of putting into words what comes from the heart and that connects as much as the best of hugs or holding hands. <3

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    1. Thank you Sara, that means a lot to me <3

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