Community – Do You Feel Connected?

~Human beings are hardwired with the impulse to share our ideas and a desire to know we’ve been heard. It’s all part of our need for community.~ Touch

I think that community is incredibly important and that it comes in many forms.

I grew up in a working-class neighbourhood, where all the neighbours knew each other and people looked out for each other. For example, if I got locked out of my house, I had no qualms about going to see a neighbour and staying there until my parents came home. We had other kids in the neighbourhood come to our house for lunch (because my mom stayed at home, while some other moms in the neighbourhood were working). There was a real sense of community that still exists today – I have friends from that time in my life that I am incredibly close to and I think that part of the reason we are still connected is because of our shared community history.

Over the years, we have moved a number of times and one thing that I missed a great deal was that sense of community. I could walk down the street and not know any of my neighbours. More importantly, even if I reached out, my neighbours weren’t really interested in getting to know my family either. I think that part of the reason that happened was that we were new to the area and didn’t know anyone there (whereas other already had that community sense like the once I’d experienced growing up). That being said, I do remember moving to a small town and living in a tiny apartment complex where we all knew one another well and, despite our differences in age (there were a couple that were in their early 20s all the way up to an elderly widow who was in her 70s) we often had barbeques together and even found overselves bonding during the NorthEast blackout of 2003 (where, despite what Wikipedia says, we were without power for 3 days!).

With the changes in technology have come the development of different types of communities. 10 years ago, if someone would have told me that I would be part of a blogging community, I would have said, “What the heck is a blog?” and laughed when it was explained to me! Today, however, that isn’t the case. I’m very lucky to connect with my readers and also with other bloggers. While it doesn’t, in my mind, replace the other important communities in my life, it does add another dimension to my experiences and allow me a connection with a group of unique and interesting people with whom I never would have connected.

So, when I was watching Touch a few weeks ago and head this quote, I had to pause and write down this quote because community has, and still is, a really important aspect of my life. With this community (as with others), I always hope that I am being heard and that people are interested in what I have to say.

That is why I love the comments that you, my readers, leave for me on my blog! It helps to learn more about you, to hear what you are thinking and it provides me with the reinforcement that I am being heard.

Is community something that is important to you?

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16 Responses to Community – Do You Feel Connected?

  1. mrs. shopper says:

    Well said MLRC. Life has changed alot from the good old days but we can connect to people, friends, bloggers, church, and hopefully neighborhoods.

  2. Christine says:

    Oh, yes! Definitely! When I lived in Montreal and Toronto, I didn’t really even know my neighbours in my neighbourhood. I just went about my business and that was it. Now that I live in a small rural community, I am heavily involved in everything that goes on in our community. Both hubby and I are on various committees and boards. We try to do a lot of volunteer work. Everyone knows everyone and when there’s a crisis, people are there to help each other out. It’s a wonderful sense of family and togetherness. I know it sounds really cheesy, but it’s actually a really nice feeling 🙂

  3. lisamariefletcher says:

    I miss having neighbours I can just pop over and ask for an egg from or a cup of sugar from. Neighbours who we can peek over the fence at and be invited over for the afternoon. I live in a townhouse community and even with a social committee, it still feels very disconnected.

    I’m thankful for my online friends. I’ve had such a great time getting to know people and having support from their encouragement in my journey!

  4. Ashley S says:

    I’m someone who likes my peace and quiet. I like having one or two close friends and other than that, my family is all I need to feel socially full. My husband is the other way, and needs a lot of social community. It’s amazing how different two people can be!

  5. Anne Taylor says:

    I can relate to your experience when you were a child as I had the same thing. We lived on a dead end street and if ever there were anything to happen we felt safe going to anyone on the street!

    Now, not so much! We’ve moved alot also and have searched for that connection, but haven’t found it yet.

  6. Things were definitely different when we were younger. Times were different.

  7. I’ve never felt less connected in my life than I do at this point. I kind of know a few neighbors but not all that well. I work in a larger company where the people are all quite pleasant but we aren’t exactly “friends” like I had in my last position in a much smaller office. I thought being a mother would connect me to other moms but that’s been a mixed bag. On some level it has brought me closer to some moms but then I became aware of this competitive mom world that I never knew existed and it sort of blind sided me. Most of the time I”m fine with this, I’ve never been one to need a crowd around me at all times but sometimes I think it might be nice to have more people to reach out to. I guess that’s why I took up “social networking ” 🙂

  8. Community gives us a sense of purpose and belonging in a world where we lie in the shadows of darkness, alone and sometimes waiting for a helping hand. That’s how I feel. I live in a co-op where we are a mini community, helping each other, watching each other’s kids, friends and neighbors, and then now I have online communities. Nothing like CBN which is great, a place to vent, cry, laugh, share, get tips, ask questions you are too afraid to ask. Without community we only just pieces of a puzzle that just don’t fit.

  9. Elva Roberts says:

    June 1-I was brought up in a small town where everyone knew everyone and there was a terrific sense of Community. When my Father passed away, we were given so much food that we did not have to buy groceries for a while. That was fifty years ago. My brother died eight years ago and lived all his life in this same small town. His children came home from Ontario and stayed in his home. The neighbours, again, donated massive amounts of cooking and baking. The children were amazed at the generosity of these good people. I love community and before we moved to the city, lived in a rural community where I was activelly involved in at least five different organizations. I loved it!-el03ro

  10. JENNIFER HART says:

    I HAVE LIVED IN THE SAME COMMUNITY SINCE I WAS BORN, MY PARENTS ARE EXTREMLY ACTIVE IN OUR RURAL COMMUNITY AND IN THE AJOINING TOWNS. MY TWO BROTHERS HAVE FOLLOWED IN THEIR FOOT STEPS AND MANY,MANY, MANY PEOPLE KNOW WHO THEY ARE AND THEY, IN TURN, KNOW MANY PEOPLE. I ON THE OTHER HAND FEEL CONNECTED INWARDLY TO MY COMMUNITY, BUT NOT OUTWARDLY. PEOPLE IN MY COMMUNITY THAT HAVE KNOWN OF MY FAMILY FOR A LOT OF YEARS BECOME VERY SURPRIZED WHEN THEY MEET ME AND SAY ,OH I DID NOT KNOW THEY HAD A DAUGHTER, ALMOST APOLEGETICALLY. IT IS A BIG SOURCE OF AMUSMENT FOR ME. BUT BECAUSE OF MY CONNECTIONS AND GEOGRAPHY I AUTOMATICALLY FEEL A KINSHIP AND THEY DO AS WELL,LIKE WE HAD KNOWN OF EACH OTHER ALL OF THAT TIME.

  11. Hello.This article was extremely fascinating, particularly because I was searching for thoughts on this topic last Wednesday.

  12. Pretty nice post. I just stumbled upon your weblog and wanted to say that I’ve really enjoyed surfing around your blog posts. In any case I’ll be subscribing to your rss feed and I hope you write again soon!

  13. Mag says:

    Honoured to be part of your online community. Love reading your blog!

  14. Ester G says:

    I didn’t feel connected until I found a way to give back to the community; volunteering has filled me with joy and made me a part of my community!

  15. Kathleen Blom says:

    I just moved and have found it shocking that in three months we still haven’t met our neighbours.

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