We all see the constant stream of messages flowing down our timelines. We peek at conversations that we are not a part of and in a way experience how individuals are interacting. That is the public feed of twitter.
What we don’t see are the DMs. For those that may be new to twitter, DM is the acronym for direct message. It’s how you communicate with your twitter network in private….140 characters of texting. The DM is more than just the place where people saw a “video of you dancing”, a “picture of you online” or the “latest great diet remedy.” Btw, none of those are REAL. Please do NOT click the links! You will regret it!
DMs are where conversations go when the world does not need to see. We’ve all had many conversations through DM. It’s also where I’ve gotten to know so many people in a more personal way, extending well beyond PLN…to friend.
When my father became ill, all of a sudden, in the wee hours of the night, my mother made a strict demand that we not post anything at all to Facebook as she did not want the family to find out via social media. Being the rule follower that I am, and knowing that I could NOT contain my emotions, I posted to twitter. She didn’t say anything about twitter and my family does not follow me.
As the doctor was informing us that my father had to be revived, I was deep in a DM with none other than Kristy Vincent, who read my tweets and messaged me. I was panicked, heartbroken and in tears. Through DM, she calmed me down and helped me to breathe so that I could support my mother. In at least 20 private messages of 140 characters each, I was experiencing the first moments of a long term friendship that blossomed from twitter.
That day, I worried that I was sharing too much. I tend to do that at times…hence now. We use twitter for professional purposes. We grow and we learn together. However, so many of us are connecting so constantly until the personal side of us shines through. This is okay.
Kristy and I have been through storms together, each being support for the other. While I am not okay with my dad’s “hiccup”, as he now calls it, I am so grateful that amidst the storm, in the middle of a tornado, my phone pinged with Kristy on the other end.