Life, Death and Social Media

Yesterday had one of the surrealer moments in my life. A friend from childhood has been ailing at Stevens hospital (properly, it’s now Swedish Edmonds), and was given a few days/weeks to live. So, last night he posted on Facebook that he had just hours to live and that this was his last post. With his deteriorating health, I fully believed the statement.
There’s much within this, but I’m focused on the newness of this. Since he has a phone, which can be worked pretty easily even when weak and exhausted, this contact was able to be pushed out.  Made me think of the last minute letters sent by rebels, resisters, those executed for political gain. Those letters were far more effort, and would only be readily sharable with a small group of people. Now, with a few strokes of your thumb, messages are sent to out to thousands, potentially millions. The ease of mass communication deeply changes our connection.
As shocking as such a message is, I expect this to become more commonplace. Perhaps we can eliminate the feeling of isolation. And, in the end, perhaps it’s good. Maintaining connection in the most challenging and intimate of times.