One of my most favorite things about blogging is all the frengers I've made.
Frengers = stranger/friends.
My whole life I have lived in somewhat of a bubble. I was raised Southern Baptist by awesome parents. I did go to public schools my whole life, but I was somewhat naive when it came to other people. I think I assumed that most people's families were similar to mine. I went to a Christian college where my bubble continued to envelope me. I got married right out of college and settled down to have kids. The bubble was ever present. Life in the bubble was comfortable. Easy. I did teach school for awhile and met a few people who lived life outside that bubble. I didn't understand them, and they scared me. My world-view was small and safe.
In 2002 we moved overseas. I tried to carry my bubble with me. There were many, many people who were different than me, but I did find a rather large group of people who fit quite nicely into my bubble. But then something happened. I got tired of life completely in the bubble. I was meeting people outside of the bubble naturally, and I found myself challenged by our differences. They didn't scare me. I wanted to understand them.
This same philosophy has carried over to my blogging buddies. My blog used to be private. Only people I gave the blog address to could see it. In November I made the big change from private blog to public blog. I stepped out of that bubble. Since then I have had many people I don't know read my blog. Some have even come back for a second or third visit. Some have even become friends. Despite our political, religious, cultural, and sexual orientation differences we have become friends, and that doesn't scare me.
I still have my bubble. I have amazing friends from my life inside the bubble. I know they aren't going anywhere. They will always be here for me, and that means a lot to me.
But one thing I know now is this...I may not always agree with those I meet. My beliefs may be completely different from theirs. I may not always understand where they are coming from. But I can listen to them. I can love them. I can be their friend. And the great thing is I want to. I want to live a life full of compassion and love...for those inside my bubble as well as those outside of it.